The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has announced to fund $2.4 million to ActewAGL to demonstrate vehicle-to-grid (V2G) services in Canberra, Australia. The V2G technology allows electric vehicles (EVs) to discharge electricity back to the grid or even provide services to improve grid security.
The project is called Realising Electric Vehicle-to-Grid Services (REVS). In this project, 51 Nissan LEAF EVs will be deployed to test and provide V2G services. The EVs will be part of fleet operated by the government of the Australian Capital Territory. When plugged in the fleet will be able to provide frequency control ancillary services (FCAS) to the national electricity market (NEM). The FCAS was provided traditionally only by coal, gas and hydro-electric power stations and more recently batteries. It is used by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to maintain the frequency on the electrical system and provide a fast injection or reduction of energy to maintain grid stability.
This will be the first time that a fleet of EVS using bi-directional chargers will supply FCAS to the NEM and thereby provide services that improve energy security and avoid blackouts. This will help in reducing the total cost of ownership of EVs. Fleets make up more than half of all new vehicles sold annually in Australia and the results of this trial will help inform future procurement choices of private and public sector fleet managers. ActewAGL will be working alongside a consortium of academic, government, transport and electricity system partners including the Australian National University (ANU), JET Charge, Evoenergy, SG Fleet, the government of the Australian Capital Territory and Nissan. The fleet will be used normally during business hours but will be plugged in when not on the road which allows for approximately 70 per cent availability for providing grid services. Utilising the data from the trial, the ANU will lead the development of a roadmap for the commercialisation of V2G technology for all stakeholders.