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V2L Tech Proving That It Is No Longer Just A Nice To Have Feature For The Occasional Camping Trip

The Beauty of V2L, Urologist Performs Vasectomy Powered By A Rivian R1T Pickup!

South Africa could finally get an EV with vehicle-to-load technology (V2L), the Kia EV6! I am very excited about this. A while ago, I had written about how South Africa, with all the load-shedding going on, really needs some EVs with V2L. In an article titled “We Need More Vehicles Like The Ford F150 Lightning: An African Perspective,” I motivated for the introduction of vehicles with V2L technology in several markets experiencing frequent power rationing.

An example of one of these vehicles is the Ford F150 Lightning. The Ford F150 Lightning can provide 9.6 kW of continuous backup power to help power your home or appliances in the event of a blackout or high grid electricity prices. By pairing the F150 Lightning with the necessary vehicle to home (V2H) gear, the pickup truck could help power homes and replace or reduce the use of the fossil-fueled generators. South Africa has a Ford assembly plant where the ICE Ford Ranger pickup is assembled. The electric Ford Ranger Lightning & Thunder pickups are coming and I hope this means we could get a locally assembled EV with V2L technology.

Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest share of electricity output from backup/standby generators in the world. 9% of annual electricity consumption in the region is from backup/standby generators. This is due many countries in the region having constrained generation capacity, and weak and intermittent grids, resulting in regular power cuts. This makes V2L technology more of a necessity in this part of the world, than a nice to have feature for the occasional camping trip in other developed markets where the electricity grid is very reliable.

Since I wrote those articles, I have had several discussions with people from around the world and also seen some comments on social media saying that V2L is also now important and not just a nice to have feature. Earlier this week, a perfect example of this came from a urologist in Austin, Texas! In what could actually be the first ever vasectomy performed using V2L, Dr Christopher Yang, performed what he called the world’s first Rivian-powered vasectomy. In his Tweet, he said “Power in clinic went out, patient didn’t want to reschedule cause he already had time off. Electrocautery was normal, procedure went great!”

We should be hearing more of these stories in the near future given the ongoing global energy crunch and skyrocketing energy prices. The good thing is that there are now quite a few vehicles with V2L tech. Here is a summary of some of them:

Here is a video of one of these vehicles, the BYD Atto 3, in Sydney, Australia, showing some V2L action.

BYD is taking electric vehicles to the world, offering its electric vehicle in more markets and new markets where other OEMs aren’t ready or willing to go just yet. This means more vehicles with V2L tech such as the Atto 3 will reach more markets sooner rather than later.

 
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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has been fascinated with batteries since he was in primary school. As part of his High School Physics class he had to choose an elective course. He picked the renewable energy course and he has been hooked ever since. At university he continued to explore materials with applications in the energy space and ending up doing a PhD involving the study of radiation damage in High Temperature Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors. He has since transitioned to work in the Solar and Storage industry and his love for batteries has driven him to obsess about electric vehicles.

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