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Kaluza readies electricity grid for mix of charging technologies

Kaluza has created a new platform to help local energy providers manage electricity supply and demand between a mix of vehicle charging technologies.

The flexibility platform has been introduced for Western Power Distribution’s (WPD) IntraFlex project so those charging at home with vehicle-to-grid (V2G), smart charging or battery storage technology can all trade energy back and forth.

WPD is a distribution network operator (DNO) for the Midlands, South Wales and the South West, with around 7.9 million customers.

Kaluza’s flexibility platform will shift electric vehicles (EV) charging away from times of high demand, to import energy when it is cheapest and greenest for end customers and WPD.

V2G technology allows electricity to flow in both directions to and from electric vehicle batteries, allowing energy stored in the battery to be sold back to the grid when demand for power is high.

Vehicles can then charge when demand is lower or renewable generation is high, reducing reliance on fossil-fuelled generation, giving V2G a role in carbon reduction efforts.

Smart changing means EV owners can plug in their vehicles and a management system will top up the vehicle at times that will be most beneficial to manage energy demand.

It also allows drivers and fleet operators to manage their charging stations remotely, implement new features automatically and gather data about how chargers are being used and by whom.

Conor Maher-McWilliams, head of flexibility at Kaluza, said: “While flexible, low carbon technologies become increasingly prevalent in people’s homes, there hasn’t been an effective way of coordinating charging across different types of devices to support grid balancing.

“This service changes that and will enable truly scalable flexibility so that millions of devices can store green and affordable energy in the future.” 

Roger Hey, DSO Systems and projects manager at WPD, said the project will enable his company to understand how charging technologies will work together.

He said: “For electric vehicle owners it brings forward the prospect of cleaner and cheaper energy in a way that can be replicated across the country.”

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