Enel X’s eMotorWerks has successfully deployed a 30 megawatt / 70 megawatt-hour virtual energy storage battery load comprised of distributed electric vehicle charging loads on the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) markets.
The new offering bundles together the electricity demand of thousands of plug-in vehicle drivers and pays drivers for the ability to throttle charging speeds up and down in response to signals from utilities. In exchange, owners earn credits on eMotorWerks’ JuiceNet platform.
Bundling together the charging demand of EV drivers and using it to offset periods of high demand on the grid operates much like a grid scale battery does, with the capacity to offset spikes in usage on the grid with reduced usage.
That’s where the virtual energy storage battery names comes in and represents a new way of adding storage capacity to the grid without the need for any new capital spending. No batteries, no installations, no wiring, no connection fees or construction permits. The system simply takes existing assets that owners have already purchased and uses the software and connectivity that they come with to create value for utilities and to generate revenue for plug-in vehicle drivers.
eMotorWerks’ solution leverages the intelligence of its JuiceNet platform to create a virtual Battery Management System (BMS) to allow it to trade on the CAISO wholesale day-ahead and real-time markets. Having direct communications back to each of eMotorWerks’ 6,000 participating California chargers allows JuiceNet to dynamically adjust charging loads to balance grid demand in realtime. That capability can and is being used in California to help keep the cost of electricity down while absorbing some of the spikes caused by intermittent renewable generation.
“Having proved at scale capabilities that no other EV charging technology has accomplished, eMotorWerks is aggregating and bidding EV loads at the wholesale level,” said Val Miftakhov, CEO of eMotorWerks. “Our intelligent platform already delivers on grid integration, wholesale energy cost reduction and renewables integration with cost-effective load aggregation. It’s time for utilities around the country and the world to take advantage of these capabilities and help grow this virtual battery to support our shared electrification and decarbonization goals.”
Moving forward, eMotorWerks is pushing other utilities around the country to sign on to its forward-looking demand response program in the hopes of offering additional zero-capital virtual energy storage battery capability in their service areas.
“The technology advancements we are delivering in smart-grid charging is analogous to the technology advancements project developers leveraged when pioneering third-party finance in the solar industry 10 years ago,” said Preston Roper, Chief Marketing & Operating Officer of eMotorWerks. “Similar to innovative work expanding the solar industry into the mainstream a decade ago, eMotorWerks has demonstrated our capability to deliver energy services from grid integrated distributed electric vehicle chargers, including those from our JuiceNet EVSE partners. Now, it’s up to more utilities and automakers to embrace smart-grid charging to benefit EV driving customers and their grids as a whole.”