Thursday, April 12, 2012

IBM, Honda and PG&E team up for smart charging

Jazz-EV A new project, run in association with Honda, aims to develop smart charging for electric cars that allow energy providers to effectively managed demand during peak hours.

The new pilot project brings together IBM, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and American Honda to test a system that will allow an electric vehicle to receive and respond to charge instructions based on the grid condition and the vehicle’s battery state.

The firms expect that increasing use of electric cars will drive the need to effectively manage energy demand, with IBM stating that it expects plug-in vehicles to grow to 2.9 million worldwide by 2017. It is hope the project will be able to ease concerns that the grow in EV numbers will put excessive strain on electricity supplies.

Using a Honda Fit EV (or Jazz EV as it is know in the UK), fitted with in-vehicle communications system, the project will demonstrate how IBM’s cloud based software platform can manage energy flow by communicating with the grid and the car.

"This pilot project with IBM and Honda will help us demonstrate that third-party providers have the systems and capabilities to help meet some of the challenges that electric vehicles could place on the power grid as their adoption increases in the coming years," said Saul Zambrano, senior director for consumer products for PG&E. "With updated charging patterns for EVs, we have the ability if needed, to shift demand to non-peak times to ensure the reliability of the grid so that we can continue to deliver safe, reliable and affordable energy to our customers."

Once plugged into a charge post, the Honda Fit EV initiates a charge request via the vehicles telematics system. This request is sent to IBM’s Electric Vehicle Enablement Platform where vehicle data such as battery state and grid data received from PG&E, is combined to create an optimized charge schedule, which is then communicated back to the vehicle in seconds. Using this aggregated data, the vehicle has the intelligence to charge to the level that is needed while factoring any current grid constraints.

The Green Car Website

News Update Users