A new partnership between electric vehicle charging solution provider eMotorWerks and electric utility EDF taps into eMotorWerks’ intelligent network of chargers to enable grid-scale demand management.
The core of the new solution builds a bridge between the desire of many EV drivers to cut emissions out of the picture not only at the point of use but in the electricity generation sector as well, by offering drivers the option to charge with low- or no-carbon electricity.
97% of the electricity EDF currently provides to continental France is generated from zero-carbon technologies, largely due to France’s massive nuclear electricity generation base, while other regions EDF operates in around the world are less optimized but still trending towards renewables. Looking forward to a future where electrical grids and utilities supply power not only for homes and businesses but for transportation, EDF views integration with intelligent EVSEs as strategic:
“Electrification of the transportation sector is essential for reaching our ambitious decarbonization goals,” explained Jan van der Lee, Vice President of R&D and Innovation at EDF. “EDF has studied EVSE platform technology for a number of years, and eMotorWerks, with its state-of-the-art and fast-learning platform solution and expanded list of charging hardware options, has shown to be a viable partner from a technical and commercial standpoint. And the grid service capabilities give utilities the option to keep fossil fuel generation sources dormant and meet peak load requirements through demand response.”
The partnership was established through EDF’s Innovation Lab in Silicon Valley, which worked with eMotorWerks to validate the concept and ultimately define a new EVSE standard for EDF built by eMotorWerks. The EVSE includes eMotorWerks’ intelligent, cloud-connected JuiceNet software that includes capability for grid-scale demand management. Beyond the base use case, EDF sees the connected, intelligent chargers as a platform on top of which it can develop solutions.
Think about demand management like the opposite of grid-scale storage for achieving the same purpose: if a utility has the ability to scale up or down 1,000 EVs charging throughout the day at a 10 kW rate, that is a total of 10 MW of output extended over the timeframe the EVs are charging. The ability to throttle down a 10 MW load throughout the day as needed is roughly the equivalent to having a 10 MW battery that can discharge for a set number of hours depending on its total energy capacity (but without the efficiency losses of having to charge up the battery then discharge it later). This is, admittedly, oversimplified, but it should serve to illustrate the concept of what EDF and eMotorWerks hope to achieve with the partnership.
“EDF has a long history and incredible vision for supplying innovative renewable ideas to their customers, and we’re pleased to provide core intelligence around load management for their EV charging solutions,” said Valery Miftakhov, founder, and CEO of eMotorWerks. “With this collaboration, EV drivers can be more confident that they are in good hands when integrating our JuiceNet cloud solutions and proven JuiceBox EVSE technology through EDF’s expertise and network.”
The new partnership shows not only the foresight of eMotorWerks’ strong focus on building not only chargers but an intelligent control platform that offers immense value to utilities looking for more control over the massive new loads being put onto their grids. eMotorWerks’ JuiceNet was built with automated, multi-tiered control algorithms and load balancing that allow EV drivers the flexibility to charge their cars on the cleanest and least expensive energy available. On the utility side, it allows for real-time visibility of major grid parameters and control of EV charging demand. That translates to a drastically increased ability to stabilize loads, driving down the need for new grid infrastructure that would have otherwise been required.
The white label partnership with EDF is the latest in a long string of agreements for eMotorWerks that also includes agreements with AeroVironment, Share&Charge, Volta, and Webasto, and the cashless payment solution provider Nayax. eMotorWerks has deployed over 22,000 smart-grid charging stations to date with its flagship JuiceBox EVSE, which was recently reduced in price to reflect the scale up of flexible electric load capacity on the JuiceNet platform and the monetization of that load via utility demand response and other grid services revenue streams.
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