An interesting conversation about the ever growing amount of rooftop solar and the journey of EVs.
Dr Björn Sturmberg, who is the research leader of ANU’s Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program says vehicle-to-grid offers multifaceted solutions to Australia’s energy woes including reduced prices and increased grid resilience. Sturmberg thinks EV owners can get an even better deal than free charging when it comes to V2G.
“The opportunities for V2G to generate revenue in Australia are significant, due in no small part to the volatility of an electricity market with concentrated market power and aging fossil fuel generators as illustrated earlier this week in Victoria.” said Sturmberg.
On Wednesday after storms in Victoria cut transmission lines leaving 500,000 households without power, wholesale electricity prices spiked as high as $16,600/MWh.
Sturmberg thinks that V2G has the potential to provide a lot more financial benefit than free charging to EV owners.
“Our research shows that the potential income from V2G will in many cases far exceed the cost of EV charging, meaning drivers ought to receive more than just free charging.”
He also believes EV owners should be incentivised to keep their vehicles connected as much as possible.
“For the grid – and thereby for the reliability and affordability of all Australian’s electricity supply – the most important aspect of EV usage is that EVs are plugged in to chargers (or a regular power outlet) as often as possible,” he says.
“This provides the greatest flexibility in their charging, to reduce the cost of electricity generation as well as, critically, the costs of network maintenance and emissions. This requires a shift in drivers’ behaviours, to habitually plug in their EVs whenever parked.”
Sturmberg says he wants to see innovation and trials of tariffs that provide incentives for every minute that EVs are plugged in and available for managed (‘smart’) charging and says this has the potential to be very effective even before including V2G.
On the impacts of V2G to EV battery life Stumberg thinks provided systems are well managed, there’s no need for concerns around battery degradation.
“The impact of V2G (and driving) on batteries is primarily determined by the state of charge of the battery and the rate at which power is injected or drawn out of the battery,” says Sturmberg.
“Well managed V2G, that keeps the state of charge of vehicles within batteries’ comfort zone (generally 30-80%), will have a very modest impact – and in some studies has been shown to improve battery health compared to unmanaged charging by reducing the amount of time that batteries are at a very high state of charge.”
We have just published a new article from the REVS V2G trial about how participants in a field trial – in this case, the fleet, sustainability and asset managers – make sense of and influence technologies when a group comes along wanting to deploy and test them.
We found unexpected effects which revealed insights about what configuration of V2G might be acceptable to fleet end users. If energy market participants want V2G to solve their problems (and make them profit), they need to do the flexibility work.
Vehicle-to-grid is a niche technology that has the potential to benefit electricity markets and support more renewable energy in the grid. However, interest from prospective users in adopting V2G is not well understood, particularly in the context of fleet vehicles. Technology-oriented field trials can contribute to the development of niche technologies. Trials usually focus on making engineered systems work, institutional embedding and testing business models. However, through the participation of users they also provide the opportunity to explore processes of problem definition and the formation of social, ethical and cultural meanings. This article presents findings from the Realising Electric Vehicle-to-grid Services project, an Australian trial of vehicle-to-grid in a government-owned light passenger car fleet, aiming to explore co-productive processes as essential aspects of participatory technology development. Our data comprises interviews with organisational actors responsible for facilitating and mediating the trial, as well as others in similar organisational roles. Adopting ecologies of participation as a framework, it reveals the productive effects of these actors in mediating the local embedding of vehicle-to-grid. These findings challenge the framing of vehicle-to-grid as being a question of consumer acceptance and suggest that, for this promising technology to contribute to a more sustainable future, the electricity sector must accept more risk.
Full article: https://lnkd.in/eukchts2
Story in SBS about how an Australian physicist found a way to shave 10% off his neighbours’ power bills.
Arkadiy Matsekh changed the billing system of the embedded network of his housing complex. As a result, his neighbours are saving up to 10 per cent on their power bills.
Dr Sturmberg believes that the greatest achievement of this particular body corporate is that the community was able to reach an agreement and embrace change.
“Dr Matsekh seems to have done a lot of work by actually talking to his neighbours and getting their support,” he says.
“The bigger impact of what he has done is not kilowatt-hours of solar that he has produced. But the social expectations that he is setting in his neighbourhood.
The message to the broader society says that ‘everyone deserves access to cheap and clean power’.
“We see our (NRMA) partnership with the ANU Solar Racing Team and the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge as a great opportunity to support young people who are the leaders and policymakers of tomorrow. This is just one of many steps we’re taking to help Australian motorists in their transition towards an electric future.” NRMA CEO, Carly Irving-Dolan
ANU Project Lead Isaac Martin said the Solar Racing team had spent the last six years working to develop sustainable innovation within the ACT and were looking forward to working with the NRMA for the BWSC.
“Our team is so lucky to be made up of such diverse individuals from different backgrounds and experiences, and we’re excited to continue to push the boundaries of sustainable technology together,” Mr Martin said.
It’s wonderful to have The NRMA continue to support #electricvehicles and get behind Australia’s solar race (from Darwin to Adelaide) and the ANU Solar Racing team! The team’s making their final preparation for next week’s departure and I can’t wait to join them for the 3022km trip down the Stuart!
Full story in the Canberra Weekly
In collaboration with Graham Walker of the National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science I am conducting research on how Amy’s Balancing Act influences readers’ conception of the electricity system and the transition to clean energy.
Below are a copy of the worksheets being utilised for this (one for young persons the second for adults) and the accompanying participant information sheets. This research is conducted under ANU Ethics Protocol 2023/286.Continue reading
This has been one of the most engaging – and out there – projects I’ve ever had been involved in. It was an absolute privelidge to work with Brad Riley and collaborators in the First Nations Clean Energy Network on the content, Mitchell Whitelaw and Dave Fanner from the Engaged ANU on the creative engagement, and Tristan Schultz from Relative Creative who designed the richly layered absurdist mnemonic experience.
My speech from the events:
Immerse yourself in an absurd wellness ritual, and design your renewable energy future in the style of a wellness EnergiZine.
In this immersive journey, we embrace the strange obsession of modern culture with wellness and extend its fascination to our energy choices. Like a vibrant metabolic soup, energy systems and sub-systems interplay, offering trade-offs and options for just transitions. Through cutting, pasting, hacking, crafting, mapping, and layering, you will design your renewable energy futures in the style of a wellness EnergiZine, tailored for your own home, workplace, and community memory places. Nourishing the soul, you’ll explore renewable energy sources that nurture our planet and promote our wellbeing.
Drawing on the intelligence of Indigenous knowledge systems, you’ll develop mnemonic techniques to store your energy knowledge for later use. Guest speakers, including First Nations experts and ANU researchers, share perspectives that enrich your EnergiZine.
Join us in this remarkable experience where wellness and energy transitions intertwine. Let the workshop’s immersive atmosphere fuel your creativity and inspire conscious choices. Don’t be left in the dark. As the sun dips below the horizon, let your EnergiZine shine, illuminating a path to a sustainable energy future for ourselves and the planet we call home.
While the pivotal role of electrification in decarbonisation has been understood for decades, it has rarely been described as vividly or enthusiastically as by Saul Griffith in The Wires That Bind. Griffith recognises that electrification is a story, at its heart, not about decarbonisation but about cleaning the air in our kitchens and streets, improving the liveability of our homes and communities, and “keeping wealth in our households and communities” – and nation. In short, electrification is a story about a better future.
While attuned to this human story of electrification, Griffith is, at heart, an engineer so it’s no surprise that The Wires That Bind is packed full of figures. Emissions are carved up, the grid is mapped and fossil machines are counted. This achieves Griffith’s goal of “clarity about the job in front of us” and complements his persuasive case for electrifying everything. The question that remains is: how can the transition best be accelerated and steered towards just and enduring outcomes?Continue reading