“By year-end 2026, EV charging (both service and energy) will constitute 30% of net new revenue for Tier 1 utilities in developed economies*”.
In research from Gartner®, a company that delivers actionable, objective insight to executives and their teams, the – Top 10 Trends Driving the Utility Industry* , “Electric cars, which accounted for 2.6% of global car sales and about 1% of global car stock in 2019, registered a 40% year-over-year increase, IEA estimates that by 2030 the number of EVs will reach almost 250 million. Consequently, EVs are quickly becoming one of the largest ﬂexible loads on the grid in many countries.**”
The pressure is on for utilities to build strategies based on information and demands coming from the US Departments of Energy and Transportation, and from consumers that want to seamlessly charge their electric vehicles (EV) at work, home and on the road. Most large utilities have begun the journey to address the management of renewables and EVs on their grid. Medium utilities are learning from these leaders how to stay within regulated standards and ensure customers can enjoy their new EVs. To address these needs, utilities are preparing to take the next step: evaluating which software solution will quickly set them up for success.
What does the next step involve?
Utilities need a comprehensive solution to face the electric vehicle revolution happening on their grid right now. The goal is for every EV consumer to enjoy their vehicle and optimize its charging pattern at minimum cost and the smallest CO2 footprint, while keeping the grid safe and reliable for everyone. These at times represent conflicting objectives, which are solved by contractual and market logics, often managed with the contribution of a middleman: the EV aggregator companies or EV service providers.
What communication is needed?
For the utility to interface in a consistent fashion with the myriad of both individual EV chargers and aggregated ones, a standard communication protocol is required: IEEE 2030.5. This protocol is by far the most advanced for DER communications overall and has been well received by the Automotive industry. The protocol allows utilities to schedule or control some vehicle-to-grid events, where the EV is helping out the grid: for instance, by supplying power from its battery back to the grid when it is needed most.
More broadly, utilities need to build a complete set of capabilities in a step-by-step process in order to have full situational awareness of every EV from the grid control room and control them when needed in synch with the EV owner. Some of the necessary functions include EV charger registration, connection acceptance, modeling, monitoring, scheduling, market interface, optimization and control.
What is the solution?
Utilities need a modular solution suitable for their grid; a utility with 3,000,000 users has very different needs from a utility with 200,000 users. For almost a decade, GE Digital has been working with leading utility customers and building the industry’s leading Renewables and DER Orchestration solution, which now embraces electric vehicles as another DER type. The inherent complexity of adding EVs can be managed within the solution, but as well, abstracted to the grid operator as much as possible. GE Digital’s comprehensive solution addresses the EV revolution and its impact across transmission and distribution and has already deployed some advanced capabilities for major utilities.
Let’s start a conversation about how you will address renewables on your grid and how the top utilities globally are relying on GE to provide solutions for the EV revolution.
Safe, secure management and orchestration of the distribution grid
Enable utilities to manage and orchestrate Renewables & DERs in an end-to-end manner, via flexible deployment options ranging from edge to cloud
Predict intermittency for transmission and distribution