Dormouse wrote: ↑
22 Sep 2021, 14:00
Gibbo2286 wrote: ↑
22 Sep 2021, 12:28
These quotes arrived today, what do you guys think?
What precisely does Smart Grid Enabled mean?
Charge points that are eligible for the OLEV grant since around 2018 (not long after I got my "dumb" charge point in 2017) are required to have smart grid features.
Essentially this means that at some point in the future the national grid would have control over turning off individual chargers during peak hours to be able to smooth and manage grid demand by deferring charging later into the evening.
With the number of EV's on the road at the moment it's not a problem if people arrive home and plug in at 6pm or so, but if you imagine a future where most cars are EV's, that would be a major headache for the grid and local power companies if everyone plugged in to charge just after work. There's enough capacity and generation in place to charge a nation of EV's even today, but not all at the same time and not all at 6pm on a weekday.
I voluntarily charge my car in the small hours of the morning with a timer anyway because it's better for the battery to leave charging closer to when you need to use the car. (minimise the amount of time it sits around near full charge)
No doubt when EV's become more popular split rate tariffs will be used as a "carrot" to entice people to charge off peak and save money, (you can do it now if you have a smart meter and a suitable tariff) but the ability to actually control the on/off status of the millions of charge points around the country at peak times will be key to ensuring that the grid can cope and that demand can be smoothed. If a car is already charging when the charge point was commanded off it will just resume again when the charge point is commanded on again, and I would think that there would be a way to manually override it.
As well as just telling a charge point to go off, it can potentially tell it to just throttle down a bit during peak times - for example a 7kW charge point could be asked by the Smart grid control to throttle back to 3kW from 6pm to 8pm for example rather than completely turning off. (Charge points can dynamically request the car to reduce the charging rate all the way down to a minimum of about 1.4kW if necessary) And by controlling how many EV chargers they command to turn off or throttle back it gives the grid operators very fine grained control to balance the load on the grid.
As far as I know none of this is in place or active at the moment other than in trials, so "Smart Grid" features in a charge point are just future proofing for the day when EV's are common. I think it will be several years (at least 5) before any of this load management stuff actually gets switched on at a national level.
I liken this very much to hot water cylinder control in NZ. I don't know if you guys ever had this in the UK but it was common (and I think still common) for hot water in NZ to be provided from a large electric hot water cylinder that primarily heats at night then stores the hot water during the day. The power company had remote control over what times the power for the hot water cylinder was on and they used this for load shedding. In return the rate for the hot water supply was drastically cheaper than normal 24 hour electricity supply to the rest of the house.
I remember it well because if all the hot water was "used up" in morning showers, there was no more hot water for most of the rest of the day...