Delaware Gov. Jack Markell was joined by executives from NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG) and officials from the U.S. Energy Dept and the University of Delaware to celebrate the eV2g project’s naming as an official PJM Interconnection resource.
In lay terms, this means they have successfully developed and commercialized technology enabling the sale of power from electric vehicles back to the grid.
NRG and UD have been working on the eV2g project since Sept 2011, attempting to set up a two-way interface so that power can flow from the grid to electric vehicles or the other way around.
On Feb 27, 2013, the eV2g project became a PJM frequency regulation market participant. This frequency regulation is the basis on which demand and supply is balanced every second.
For the last two months, the fleet of eV2g electric vehicles has been selling power back to PJM, the power transmission organization charged with the coordination of wholesale electricity movement across an area that includes 60 million consumers in 13 Mid-Atlantic states.
Gov. Markell said the NRG-UD partnership on this project illustrates the potential research institutions have for spurring economic development.
Denise Wilson, NRG executive vice president, likewise said that the advancement of the project proved that such partnerships had the power to accelerate development of clean energy technologies.
UD President Patrick Harker thanked all the policy leaders and industry for coming together for a project that involves stable energy, clean energy-powered vehicles, and profitable sustainability.
One of the key reasons the eV2g project is big news is because it has an intermediate layer where power from multiple electric vehicles can be aggregated to turn it into one big power source for the grid, rather than a large number of smaller ones to be dealt with individually.
Vehicles charged at night using wind power can become a big source that can be tapped by the grid during the day, when demand is higher. It will help fleet owners generate revenue even when vehicles are parked.
The fleet of electric vehicles required for the project was provided by BMW. The charging stations based on technology developed by the University of Delaware were provided by Milbank Manufacturing, and AutoPort Inc. installed the control technology.
PJM changed its rules and reduced the minimum amount of power required to be provided by participants. Michael J. Kormos, senior vice president of PJM Operations, said that they knew it would attract innovation, and that they were happy to be a part of the project and hoped for more such innovation from the industry.