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Electric cars stabilize the Swedish power grid

Flexible charging contributes to grid stability

Tibber’s smart charging system makes it possible to interrupt the process of charging electric cars to balance load peaks, thereby improving grid flexibility. (Copyright: Tibber)

The digital power company Tibber has already relied on its collaboration with the utility company Statnett to successfully balance the Norwegian power grid using electric cars. In a test, the Scandinavian start-up met a peak in demand by automatically switching off 1 MW of charging power to a total of 160 electric cars. According to Tibber, this marked the first time that devices for charging electric vehicles in private households were used to provide balancing power on the real market. This achievement was made possible by the company’s smart charging solution, which generally ensures that electric cars are only charged when electricity is cheapest. Tibber reports that since late June, it has also now moved into the Swedish balancing market for frequency containment reserve (FCR), using the capacity offered by electric vehicles.

Since the supply chain is automated – from placing an electronic order with Tibber to the shutdown of the charging process – the approach is also scalable. In addition, it is not limited to electric cars, but could, for example, be expanded to include smart heating devices – something Tibber is already working on. Tibber founder and CEO Edgeir Vårdal Aksnes explains, “This milestone shows that electric cars actually contribute to stability in the electricity grid, instead of being a load.” Tibber plans to continue to develop the technology and tap into additional European markets. (SP)

Further information: Tibber

 

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