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Project aims for standardised Smart Grid technology

Working with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), the project will aim to establish a demand response system, which can work out how much energy the grid can supply, and how much is required by the vehicles using it to charge.

This will develop a cloud-based central server which will receive supply and demand data, and output a standardised communication to vehicles regardless of marque, enabling them to intelligently stop and start charging to share the load on the grid. The end goal is to share existing capacity, avoiding expensive upgrades while still providing energy to charge a growing fleet of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles.

Dan Bowermaster, EPRI manager of Electric Transportation, said: ‘As electric vehicles become more prevalent in the marketplace, it will present some unique challenges and opportunities for utilities who manage the flow of the electric grid.

‘The focus of this collaboration is to create a standard program that will allow utilities to work with different types of plug-in vehicles to more efficiently manage their demand on the grid.’

Project partners comprise BMW Group, Chrysler Group, Ford, GM, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubisi Motors and Toyota, working with utility companies DTE Energy, Duke Energy, PJM Interconnection LLC, CenterPoint Energy, Inc., Southern Company, Northeast Utilities, Southern California Edison, Pacific Gas & Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric, Commonwealth Edison, TVA, Manitoba Hydro, Austin Energy, ConEd and CPS Energy.

General Motors already has Smart Grid functionality built into its OnStar telematics system, the manufacturer said.

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Alex Grant

Trained on Cardiff University’s renowned Postgraduate Diploma in Motor Magazine Journalism, Alex is an award-winning motoring journalist with ten years’ experience across B2B and consumer titles. A life-long car enthusiast with a fascination for new technology and future drivetrains, he joined Fleet World in April 2011, contributing across the magazine and website portfolio and editing the EV Fleet World Website.

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