In the Netherlands, GreenFlux and ElaadNL strive to accommodate as much renewable energy in the energy system as possible and will explore the possibilities of matching demand to sustainable generation.
The Dutch pilot will cover three domains and two different approaches to charging electric vehicles on renewable energy.
The first domain explores a charge point at home in own driveway or carport. Usually there is only one charge point and the available maximum power for charging is low. If there is renewable energy available, it is almost always from roof solar panels. The charge point is connected to the grid connection of the house
The second domain explores a group of charge points at an office building, a shopping centre, a football stadium, etc. The charge points are all connected to the same network connection and often have to divide the available capacity to prevent overloading this connection. The charge points are sometimes publicly accessible but not 24/7. Local renewable energy production can come from solar panels, but also from windmills or other sources
The third domain explores a charge point in the public domain. The charge point has its own connection to the electricity grid and its own energy contract. It is completely interoperable (everybody can charge there) and it is available 24/7. Connection to renewable energy sources is via the energy contract, this might be reflected in dynamic energy prices.
The two approaches are:
- The ‘grid approach’: Where you are able to use renewable energy at the location that it is produced, and where electricity does not need to be transported over large distances which reduces energy transport losses significantly. Also, it diminishes the load on high power transmission cables, which reduces network costs in general.
- The ‘system approach’: Supply and demand always need to be in balance. This effectively means that electric vehicles are charged when (renewable) energy is available and are not charged (or discharged) when there is none. This does not need to be locally produced energy (since electricity travels at one third of the speed of light through a cable), it is really the system balance of a country or large region that is considered here. The (im)balance of the energy system is reflected in the (dynamic) price of energy.
Each of the three domains tested in this pilot requires a different approach and a different business case. In the first two domains calculations on Business Case possibilities will be performed, assuming a fixed energy-system. In the third domain the flexibility possibilities to be entered in the energy system are considered. Besides practical implementations, also data-extraction and data-analyses will be performed, and methodological user (impact) research will be done.
The biggest challenge for the future is to maintain system balance when renewable energy sources become dominant in the energy system. However, in the next 5 to 10 years, there will be a very strong desire among consumers to charge vehicles with ‘their own’ energy. Attractive visualisations and graphical user interfaces for charging and production on apps/screens/websites will be developed as a part of INVADE platform. It will be crucial to demonstrate how existing smart energy solutions can be made interoperable with the Integrated INVADE platform.
This pilot will help study the effect on the electricity grid load of charging with locally availably energy resources and determine its financial value.
In the pilot all three domains will be demonstrated and both approaches will be tested.
Domain 1: Charge EVs at home, by charging as much on locally produced solar energy as possible. The user will have the option to overrule the smart charging process if they are in a hurry and there is no local production. The ‘grid approach’ is used here. GreenFlux will be in charge in this domain.
Domain 2: Charge electric vehicles in the semi-public domain. The EVs are, as much as possible, charged when locally produced energy is available. The source of this local energy can be both solar and wind and is preferably connected to the same grid connection but could also be in the vicinity. In this domain the ‘grid approach’ is also used. GreenFlux will be in charge in this domain.
Domain 3: Charge electric vehicles in the public domain. In this case, charging will not be based on the availability of local renewable energy but on the total amount of renewable energy in the national system. In this domain, multiple possibilities for connecting the e-mobility system to the electricity system are implemented and explored. We will explore the possibilities for multi-objective-optimisation: the EV-driver’s needs, the sustainable generators need (by Balance Responsible Parties) and the Transmission System Operator’s need. In this domain the ‘system approach’ is tested. ElaadNL will be in charge in this domain.
The stakeholders involved are E-mobility Service Providers, CPOs, Distribution Grid Operators (via ElaadNL all Dutch DSO’s are represented in this pilot), EV drivers and Charge Point Manufacturers.
This pilot will be the first comparison between Grid-to-Vehicle and Vehicle-to-Grid. It will provide the first professional and, more importantly, the first scalable solutions for driving on renewable energy and it will be the first European realisation of smart charging using only open and standardised communication protocols.
The pilot also delivers information for the future market design and regulatory framework to ‘release the EV’s flexibility’ to national regulator.