V2X* as a Solution to the Duck Curve

By Dr. Jose Torre-Bueno, CCE Executive Director

Executive Summary

The state of California has a goal of having eight million zero emission vehicles on the road by 2030. The vast majority of these will be battery electric vehicles (EV). This could either exacerbate the problem of providing energy when the sun goes down and solar power becomes unavailable (the so-called “duck curve”) or be a major source of support for the grid if vehicles are allowed to send power from their batteries when parked at charging stations (EVSE, Electric Vehicle Service Equipment). This is variously referred to as V2G (vehicle to grid), V2H (vehicle to home), or V2X (vehicle to anything).

Duck Curve Graphic – Source California Independent Systems Operator (CAISO)

Currently V2G is not considered a potential source of grid stabilization in the CA Public Utility Commission’s (CPUC) planning process which will lead to the approval of costly grid infrastructure to support transportation electrification. The Center for Community Energy is presenting an alternative where vehicles are charged during the day with power from local solar arrays mounted over parking lots, bring the charge home and deliver some of it to the homes they park in at night to flatten the duck curve.

Validating this concept requires knowledge of vehicle travel patterns and home energy usage. One reason that V2G is not being considered in the current planning process is that the only dataset currently available to the state is an old and relatively limited survey. This proposal describes a method to improve the modeling of V2G grid support by collecting travel data from the companies that currently collect such data from customers’ cell phones.

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*V2X: Vehicle-to-Everything, e.g., Home, Building, Device, etc.