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Smart on-street EV charging project launched in ‘industry first’

A CGI of the smart charging system, with 15 smart meters located in the cabinet so there is one for each chargepoint. Image: Element Energy

A CGI of the smart charging system, with 15 smart meters located in the cabinet so there is one for each chargepoint. Image: Element Energy

A project exploring smart on-street subsurface electric vehicle (EV) charging has been unveiled by Element Energy.

The energy consultancy is to lead a consortium including Trojan Energy, Octopus Energy and Landis+Gyr for the Smart Subsurface Technology for Electric Pathways (SmartSTEP) project, which is to build upon the existing STEP project which is also being run by Element Energy, Octopus Energy and Trojan Energy.

Whilst STEP is looking to deploy 200 of Trojan’s subsurface chargepoints – which slot into the ground so they are only visible when charging – in the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden from spring 2021, SmatSTEP is exploring the use of smart charging with this type of chargepoint, with the consortium claiming it to be the first time smart charging has been used in shared parking spaces on residential streets.

Phase one of the project is to see the system designed, developed and tested, with Trojan, Octopus ad Landis+Gyr already working on this.

Octopus will also be providing access and integration with its Agile tariff, which Element Energy said would allow the project to benefit from low cost green energy. The energy supplier today announced it is launching in Germany following its acquisition of German supplier 4hundred last year.

If phase one of SmartSTEPS is successful, phase two will see the smart charging system trialed, with 100 of the chargepoints installed in the initial STEPS project upgraded with Landis+Gyr’s SMETS2 smart meters.

The project recently secured a £856,000 grant from the government through the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s Energy Innovation Programme.

Simon Egan, managing director of Landis+Gyr UK, said: “Getting it right with widespread, easy and accessible EV charging will be fundamental to unlocking the potential of this sector and bringing it into the mainstream.

“SmartSTEP will have huge benefits in terms of widening the potential pool of EV customers and its success will play a major role in driving further roll outs of e-charging infrastructure at scale.”

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