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Break out the celebratory bubbly! GridPoint and Duke Energy have a milestone to celebrate and it has nothing to do with basketball.

Using the GridPoint SmartGrid Platform, Duke Energy engineers successfully charged a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) in a residential garage during off-peak hours. The car was connected in the afternoon but the charging didn't begin until the 10 p.m. that evening and it finished before the demand for electricity rose in the morning. If it had of been your PHEV, it would have been all ready to take you to work with energy completely derived from off-peak excess capacity. The SmartGrid Platform took care of everything for you whilst you were hypothetically sleeping.

GridPoint is pioneering how the grid will be organized and used. Their SmartGrid Platform creates an intelligent network that integrates load measurement and control with energy storage and production. The platform will be able to handle all the innovation in renewable energy creation and storage (PHEVs) technologies as they make their way into our everyday lives. You can check out their vision for the future in this whitepaper (PDF) and surf through the website for answers to any of your questions. You can find more details in the press release after the jump.



Press release:

GridPoint and Duke Energy Conduct First Ever Commercial Test of Utility-Controlled Smart Charging for Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles

ARLINGTON, VA − March 27, 2008 − GridPoint Inc., a leading clean tech company whose smart grid platform benefits electric utilities, consumers and the environment, and Duke Energy announced positive results from what is believed to be the first commercial test of utility-controlled "smart charging" for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).

Duke Energy engineers tested GridPoint's smart charging capability by plugging a PHEV into a garage wall outlet controlled by the GridPoint SmartGrid Platform in the late afternoon. Duke began charging the vehicle at 10 p.m. and completed charging prior to the morning peak, leaving the car fully charged for the driver's morning commute. GridPoint's platform successfully controlled, measured and verified the charging of an electric vehicle parked in a residential garage.

"Smart charging is an essential capability for Duke and all electric utilities as PHEVs enter the market," said David Mohler, Chief Technology Officer, Duke Energy. "Through this capability, we're able to reduce stress on the grid during peak periods and keep rates low."

GridPoint's smart charging capability enables utilities to control charging regardless of when consumers plug in their PHEVs, which is anticipated to be in the early evening when peak demand is high. Utilities can limit peak load growth as well as offer customers significantly reduced charging costs by billing lower rates for off-peak charging. Additionally, utilities gain complete control over when and how fast PHEVs are charged, allowing utilities to optimize generating assets.

"This is a major milestone in the evolution of the Smart Grid," said Peter L. Corsell, President and CEO, GridPoint. "We are pleased to have worked with Duke Energy to demonstrate PHEV smart charging, and we look forward to continuing to lay the groundwork for managing PHEVs."

GridPoint is the pioneer of an innovative smart grid platform that aligns the interests of electric utilities, consumers and the environment. The platform applies information technology to the electric grid to provide utilities with an intelligent network of distributed resources (e.g., advanced load control devices, batteries, solar systems) that reside at the point of consumption – the home or business. Additionally, the platform's modular, scaleable and upgradeable architecture enables utilities to create a practical path for integrating new clean technologies (e.g., plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and fuel cells).

GridPoint's recent recognition includes being selected as a 2008 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, the overall winner by AlwaysOn GoingGreen 100 Top Private Companies 2007, one of the Red Herring 100 Global, and winner of the 2007 North American Frost & Sullivan Award for Green Excellence for its success in pioneering a way to harness load management and distributed generation to achieve environmental sustainability. GridPoint is featured in the new book Earth: The Sequel, a business-centric approach to alleviating climate change by Fred Krupp, President of the Environmental Defense Fund, as well as in the Smart Grid chapter of The Clean Tech Revolution by Ron Pernick and Clint Wilder.
About GridPoint

GridPoint Inc., a leading clean tech company, is the pioneer of an innovative smart grid platform that aligns the interests of electric utilities, consumers and the environment through an intelligent network of distributed resources that controls load, stores energy and produces power. Utilities efficiently balance supply and demand by discharging stored power during peak periods, reducing customers' non-essential loads, optimizing baseload generation assets and relieving stress on T&D assets. The platform's modular, scaleable and upgradeable architecture enables utilities to deploy proven technologies, (e.g., load control devices and advanced batteries) while creating a practical path for integrating new technologies (e.g., plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and fuel cells). For consumers, the platform provides protection from power outages, increases energy efficiency and integrates renewable energy, paving the way for the commercial success of solar and wind energy sources.

On the Net: www.gridpoint.com

[Source: GridPoint via Washington Business Journal]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 8 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      It's a really big deal, EPRI has done a lot of research on this concept and it has the potential to change the game. The next step is to make it "Bidirectional", so that the batteries in PHEVs can act as storage for RE or "spinning reserves". It's so valuable to the utilities that they'ld almost give you power free for the privilege of renting your battery.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The difference is that you can simply plug the car in whenever you want, for example, right when you get home at 6pm, and it will charge the car using the least expensive electricity possible. In the example, this meant starting to charge at 10pm.

      Obviously, if you are buying electricity at a flat rate, this isn't necessary, but if a substantial portion of the fleet moved to plug-in vehicles, electric companies would want you to do this to minimize their costs.
      • 6 Years Ago
      V2G is the future! If Eestor is half what they say it is, V2G will be the ONLY way to go.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I've driven my Plug-in Hybrid Prius for 37k miles since conversion last January. Nearly all the charging has been off peak simply by the nature of when I plug in (at night when I get home and in the morning when I get to work and the fact that our electric system peak occurs in the late afternoon). A simple timer could accomplish the same feat.

      It seems like the big benefits of Smart Grid control are that now the utility has control of the process directly, could allow bi-directional flow - vehicle to grid for grid support from stored energy in the car, and simplifies metering and billing for energy used - grid recognizes car regardless of where it's plugged in and customer can be billed. All these have potential benefits to utility - hopefully that benefit would be monetized and the customer would benefit too. It may help with expanding infrastructure to support more widely available charging - especially in public places.
      • 6 Years Ago
      And I successfully charged my cell phone the other night. What's the big fuss all about? EV owners have been plugging in their vehicles at night for decades. Sorry, but I fail to see the significance.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Thats a pretty cool technology . why not use the excess electricity being blasted over our transmission lines. The electrical companies in a way loose money when they are sending all this power over the line during off pea hours and nobody is using it. That is why during the night electricity is so cheap because they practically are begging you to use it.
      • 6 Years Ago
      @ John Rowell: lol, your reaction mirrors my own initially. I had to re-read it to find the significance. Allow me to better explain... the car was plugged in during the afternoon. When the utility company sensed there was excess capacity in the grid, it began to send electricity to charge the battery. It might not be a big deal when it's just one vehicle but in the future when there are, hopefully, 10's of thousands, it would be of great benefit to everyone if they could be charged with excess capacity rather than producing more electricity than company already does. There is a DOE study that tells us that 84% of the nations personal transportation fleet could be charged with this "excess capacity".
      This technology could allow us to do that.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Domenick: Thanks for clarifying. Wow that is significant then. The utility companies and PHEV owners would both benefit greatly as they would be using only excess capacity and this would perform somewhat of a load balancing function.
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