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Back You are here: Home Low-Carbon Green Transportation Aerovironment, P.N.N.L. work on grid-friendly E.V. charger

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Aerovironment, P.N.N.L. work on grid-friendly E.V. charger

Aerovironment, P.N.N.L. work on grid-friendly E.V. charger
AeroVironment integrates Pacific Northwest National Laboratory technology into its EVSE-RS to enable grid-friendly PEV charging (Photo: Business Wire)

A partnership between technology provider AeroVironment, Inc. and the United States Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory aims to bring grid-friendly plug-in electric vehicle solutions to grid operators and drivers.

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Under the terms of a commercial license agreement, AeroVironment will use a portion of licensed P.N.N. L. technology in a new prototype version of its Level II charging systems.

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“Vehicle charging infrastructure is important for the market adoption of electrical vehicles and plug- in hybrid electric vehicles, said Dan Ton, program manager of the Energy Department’s Smart Grid Research and Development program.

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“We need charging stations and we need them to be intelligent in order to work with smart vehicles and smart grid infrastructure to avoid potential strain on the grid and to provide flexible billing tansactions for energy and grid services,” he added.

Developed at P.N.N.L, the Grid Friendly E.V. Charger Controller technology directs the car’s battery charger when to start and stop charging based upon existing conditions on the electrical grid.

By incorporating this technology, AeroVironment’s new prototype charging station could help stabilize the electrical grid by continuously monitoring the grids alternating current frequency and varying the vehicle’s charging rate in response.

“If a million owners plug in their vehicles to recharge after work, it could cause a major strain on the grid,” said P.N.N.L. lead engineer Michael Kintner-Meyer. “The Grid Friendly Controller could prevent those peaks in demand from plug-in vehicles and enable our existing grid to be used more evenly.”

The technology will allow E.V.s to be charged when electricity is most readily available, translating into lower bills for their owners and also resulting into a more stable grid.

If, for example, an unexpected event on the grid causes a drop in AC frequency, the system will stop charging, providing a grid “shock absorber.” This stabilizing technology will be particularly important as more and more energy from renewable resources are added to the power grid.

According to studies, the use of the technology could save $150 or more a year of a user’s electricity bill. The technology could also be subject to favorable rebates or incentives for providing shock-absorbing services to the grid operator.

AeroVironment is a technology solutions provider with an advanced portfolio of electric transportation solutions. Prototypes of the new AeroVironment charging systems are available for beta testing. The prototypes include bluetooth wireless connectivity for data streaming and local control function. – EcoSeed Staff

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