Nottingham City Council launch UK’s first vehicle-to-grid pilot project

Last week Nottingham City Council launched a CleanMobilEnergy pilot project which is part of an EU-funded project to integrate renewable energy sources, storage devices and electric vehicles. Three other cities in Northern Europe have also been selected for the demonstrator. 

The project centres on Council’s Eastcroft Depot which has been refurbished to a level that readies it for the zero neutral future the council aim to deliver by  2028.

Work on the site has included the upgrading of the electricity supply connection and installing technologies to support conversion of its operational vehicles to zero emission alternatives. Solar panels with a combined generation of 176kWp have also been installed, as has a battery storage system made from end-of-life EV batteries, offering a combined storage of 600kWh – enough to power the average UK household for two months.

40 new vehicle-to-grid (V2G) fleet vehicles have also arrived, made up of  cars, vans, trucks, road sweepers and refuse trucks. These will hook up to 40 new bi-directional charging units.

The batteries and the 40 V2G vehicles can be used for short-term storage of the electricity generated by the solar panels at the depot. Monitored by a purpose-built Energy Management System, the bi-directional charging units can send power back to the buildings on the depot or to the grid during peak times, balancing the demand of electricity and reducing energy costs.

Jorden van der Hoogt of Cenex, a CleanMobilEnergy partner, said: ‘With the increased adoption of renewable energy and electric mobility, the mismatch between supply and demand increases, straining the electricity grid.

‘By developing an integrated Energy Management System, assets within the energy system are monitored and controlled where possible. At peak moments, the demand is being reduced, or surplus of (renewable) energy is stored in battery storage systems.

‘Controlling all assets from a higher level has the potential to maximise the use of renewable energy and reduce the need for expensive grid reinforcements.’

Wayne Bexton, Director of Environment and Sustainability at Nottingham Council, said: ‘The installation of the batteries concludes the infrastructure side of a remarkable project that enables energy from solar panels to be stored and sold back into the grid at the most lucrative times of day.

‘As a demonstrator microgrid, it means we are less reliant on energy from the national grid to power our electric vehicles, helping us save money, save carbon and work towards carbon neutrality. I am extremely proud of the team working on this and thankful to our funders Interreg NW Europe and Innovate UK.’


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1 year ago

Such decisions regarding renewable energy sources in the transportation sector need to be closely monitored, as improper use of storage devices and electric vehicles may not have a positive impact on the environment. The project itself is very promising and, if properly maintained, will yield significant results

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