Raleigh, NC, Nov. 3, 2008 — Advanced Energy, in partnership with Duke Energy and Progress Energy, will initiate a smart charging trial of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). Twelve converted Toyota Priuses will be equipped with charging management technology from Seattle-based V2Green and deployed in North Carolina and Florida. The trial will assess the potential of plug-in vehicles to positively impact electric grid operations, maximize use of clean energy and test the viability of PHEVs as an alternative to traditional automobiles.
Each of the Priuses involved in the trial will be equipped with a V2Green Connectivity Module (VCM) to establish two-way communication with the electric grid and make the vehicles grid-aware. V2Green server software will be used to manage the flow of electricity to the Priuses, successfully meeting the needs of both drivers and the grid. When renewable energy, such as wind or solar power is available, charging behavior can be altered to maximize the use of cleaner energy. In periods of peak demand, charging can be delayed or slowed to avoid grid congestion and the need to provide electricity from high cost sources.
“Developing the necessary infrastructure to enable widespread use of electric vehicles is part of our balanced strategy to address the challenge of global climate change, while meeting growing energy needs,” said Bill Johnson, chairman, president and CEO of Progress Energy and co-chairman of the Edison Electric Institute CEO Taskforce on Electric Transportation.
The involvement of both Progress Energy and Duke Energy will allow the trial to explore the billing and operational requirements of supporting plug-in vehicle “roaming” between adjoining utility service areas. Many plug-in vehicle owners will charge their vehicles at home in one service area, then commute to work and connect to the grid in a different service area. Valuable insight into driver behavior will result from the PHEV trial, informing future consumer programs and inter-utility information exchange.
Progress Energy will operate six of the grid-aware vehicles, deploying four in North Carolina and two in Florida. Duke Energy will utilize three plug-in Priuses in North Carolina. The University of Florida’s Program for Resource Efficient Communities, along with UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences extension service, will also participate with one vehicle.
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