Electric Nation: Networks have EV uptake covered

Outputs of Western Power Distribution’s Electric Nation project were presented in front of 220 people on 16th July at the British Motor Museum.
The project has defined new levels of understanding of consumer behaviour around EV uptake and charging.

A key message from the extensive analysis undertaken through the project is that – for the foreseeable future – the networks will be able to cope with increasing EV uptake. This will be possible through a combination of:

  • Reward-based managed charging to take advantage of ToU tariffs, initially using mobile phone apps to gather user requirements and preferences
  • Developing hardware that can intervene and curtail charging as an emergency measure to ensure the lights stay on until the affected circuits have been reinforced
  • Stronger services into new homes to cope with increased loads from LCT at the end of the networks
  • Targeted reinforcement as business-as-usual, backed by modelling to assess where reinforcement will be needed most

The good news is that the DNOs have the problems in hand and are developing solutions that will prevent network issues, so there is no reason not to buy an EV, and motorists don’t need to worry as the network will develop in parallel with EV uptake to meet the increased demand.

The Electric Nation project recruited more than 650 electric vehicle drivers in the world’s largest domestic electric vehicle smart charging trial. The project has improved our understanding of the impact of EV charging on local electricity networks and driver attitudes towards smart charging technologies, fine-tuning technology to facilitate mass adoption of EVs.

Electric Nation is a Western Power Distribution (WPD) and Network Innovation Allowance funded project. WPD’s collaboration partners in the project are EA Technology, DriveElectric, Lucy Electric GridKey and TRL.

Further information about the project, including presentation material from the dissemination event can be found at www.electricnation.org.uk.

A summary of the trial findings can be downloaded here.