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UK government awards £1.5m for smart EV charging projects

Image: Getty.

Image: Getty.

The government has awarded over £1.5 million to two electric vehicle (EV) charging projects to help utilise electricity when its at its cheapest and help balance the grid.

Both will try to demonstrate how the smart metering systems can be used to set charging times and rates wherever EVs are parked and charging for several hours as part of the Beyond Off Street Electric Vehicle Charging programme.

Agile Streets – led by Samsung Research UK – has won £722,820.96 for its first phase as it looks to develop a purpose-built optimisation platform capable of generating commands to set a charging schedule. This will be based on EV drivers’ charging preferences, new half-hourly 'Agile Business' tariffs, distribution network operator (DNO) constraint data and other local chargepoints’ charging schedules.

As part of the project, on-street control cabinets will be installed, containing SMETS2 technology that will supply power via underground controllers to up to 12x 7kW Connected Kerb chargepoints.

A consortium, including Octopus Energy for Business, Connected Kerb, TS Design Limited, The Energy Saving Trust and the Power Networks Demonstration Centre will run the Agile Street project.

The second to win funding from the governments Beyond Off Street Electric Vehicle Charging programme, is the Smart Subsurface Technology for Electric Pathways (SmartSTEP) project. It has received £856,130.00 for its first phase, as it looks to integrate smart meter technology with an EV chargepoint and management system.

Element Energy is running the project as part of a consortium with Trojan Energy, Landis+Gyr and Octopus Energy. It will retrofit control cabinets to include Landis+Gyr SMETS2 technology, which will then work with 18 7kW Trojan Energy lance chargepoints.

The project also includes the development of a platform that can reward users for participating in load control. Octopus Energy customers will be able to pay for on-street EV charging through their domestic electricity bill thanks to the platform as well.

Start-up Trojan Energy launched the STEP project – which the SmartSTEP project will build on – thanks to funding from Innovate UK. It is rolling out 200 chargepoints throughout the London boroughs of Camden and Brent as part of the project.

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