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The webinar looked at the findings of OVO Energy's Project Sciurus - run alongside Cenex, Indra and Nissan. Image: OVO.
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OVO Drive on V2G services, residential charging and frequency services

The webinar looked at the findings of OVO Energy's Project Sciurus - run alongside Cenex, Indra and Nissan. Image: OVO.

In July, OVO Drive’s managing director Chris Russell joined us to discuss the barriers and opportunities to vehicle-to-grid (V2G) tech as part of our Current± Briefings webinar series.

Russell highlighted the great potential for the technology, in particular given the introduction of market-wide half hourly settlement periods, the Balancing Mechanism opening up and the significant code review being implemented from 2023.

Following on from the Current± Briefings session, we caught up with Russell to ask some of the questions we ran out of time for during the webinar.

As a residential customer, what would be the key reasons for me installing a V2G chargepoint versus a smart chargepoint?

There are two main reasons why customers like V2G. First, the OVO V2G trial offered customers a way to directly make money from their car by selling energy back to the grid, allowing them to earn enough money to effectively drive for free.

Second, customers with solar love the fact that V2G allows them to power their home after dark using energy that fell on their solar panels in the day - known as ‘V2H’ or vehicle-to-home.

Is specific government support likely i.e. installation grants - differentiating V2G from regular chargers?

The government is consulting on V2X technology at the moment, and assessing what role it could play to facilitate the rollout of this technology. We hope to see some concrete policy support emerge once this consultation is completed, such as install grants.

With frequency services becoming far more stringent; who would be on the hook for service penalties with EVs being the source ?

This is a great question and is certainly one of the challenges that V2G faces in bidding into the frequency markets. We’d ideally like to see frequency products / grid services in general come online that are tailored to EVs, which could reduce the risk of stringent penalties. In the absence of these, the aggregator platform would need to take the risk.

Do you think will V2G ever be used at a large-scale on high-power chargers in the future?

High power V2G could be attractive from a grid perspective, but we’d need to look closely at the battery impact if cars are being asked to export at high power for long periods of time.

Additionally, there would be some customer acceptance issues to get around if the car is plugged into a rapid charger - as customers charging on these are usually hoping to charge as quickly as possible!

What would be the key criteria to allow participation be as the number of different makes and models grows?

We’d hope to open up eligibility as widely as possible, with those data points being automatically ingested by the charger when plugged into the vehicle. More development is needed particularly on the CCS charging standard to enable more vehicles to be compatible with V2G, and we’re speaking to the auto manufacturers about this.

The next Current± Briefings webinar will be announced soon, so keep your eyes peeled!

Editorial

Molly Lempriere Deputy Editor, Current±

Molly Lempriere is deputy editor at Solar Media, responsible for its UK-facing publications Solar Power Portal and Current±.

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