The UK National Grid to crash when Electric Vehicles charge all at the same time.

National Grid to crash when EV’s charge all at the same time.

I’m surprised that this hasn’t been corrected in the Mainstream National Press.

They complain that they are not valued in the UK Media. But, are quite happy to spread Fake new to their readers when it suits them.

So, just to clear this up and point out that using these EV’s with “Vehicle to Grid” actually might have the opposite effect!

First point. If every ICE car turns up to fuel at the same time there wouldn’t be fuel left in the Petrol stations! (Petrol strike 2000)

RAC Foundation has found that most cars are sitting still idle 80%+ of the time.

EV charging on most cars can occur during the off-peak night time. When the rest of us are in bed or at work if the user doesn’t have access to a Parking Bay or Driveway at home.

With a typical EV’s now having 200-300 miles actual real-world range. The high percentage of UK working people are unlikely to need to charge more than once/twice a week. Based on the average trip to work during 2017.

The UK grid has plenty of capacity National Grid Statement and with the wind turbines sites being asked and paid millions in constraint payments most of the time to reduce their output.

The issue is storage. As electricity is very similar to all supply and demand items. You need it now but not later. As someone said – “Think of it as a cream that will go off in a matter of minutes”.

Hence, a crew at National Grid are constantly monitoring the actual usage across the UK of electricity being used second by second to ensure the supply and usage are balanced. As you can see at this site here.

If you fail. You end up with parts of the UK having to be switched off and then turned back on. Then, you have to bring additional resources (Wind, Gas, Nuke .. etc) up in a balanced way to counter actual UK load otherwise you are back to starting again with turning the power off again!  :o(

Which is why National Grid is regulated to keep the 50Hz frequency in our 220v AC is held within a certain +/- 1% limits.

Too much and the 50Hz increases which aren’t good for your electrical items. Too little and the 50hz drops downwards to the 49Hz which gives brownouts and dropouts. Again, not good for the electrical items. ( Electrical engineers I know there is a lot more to it. But, I’m trying to keep  it simple.)

Now the National Grid does provide power to some manufacturing plants in the UK under the understanding that they may need to reduce or cut the supply. This is normally attached to equipment that can stand a 15-45 of minutes. Such as a pottery furnace or Steel or other parts of manufacturing that have backup supplies can allow the National Grid to deal with the sudden loss of the expected Load or Generation capacity.

However, like most things, there is a limit that they can’t go beyond.

The good news for the National Grid and UK Gov, when everyone actually gets on board, is that most if not all EV’s or EV chargers happen to be available now via the Internet.

In most EV’s (Electric Vehicles – Tesla/Jaguars I PACE) you have between a 50-100kW battery able to supply to the local grid (DNO) if you permit them to.

They then pay you for the privilege of using or borrowing the power from your idle EV.

The net result is they save money not having to crank up resources that will need to be shut down again within a 4 hour period and clever software can work out how much your EV can spare without you needing to change your EV charging routine.

So, when you have 75,000 EV cars on-line hanging around for the 80% that they are idle and parked. That can provide an on-call electricity capacity of 3.75GW. It just sitting there. :o)

For comparison Hinckley point when and if built will output 3.2GW in total output to the National Grid. With the current 7.5kW restriction per car (this due to both the invertors current capacity and the lead that supplies the car). That allows this group of cars to provide 0.5625 GW at a drop of a request via the internet hat.

Increase the car count to 750K EV’s and you then have 5.625 GW actual realtime power with a duration of up to 5hrs plus and still allows the EV to run to work for most peoples commute.

In the UK, we purchase 2-2.5 million cars a year between the years of 2003-2017.

Now having 5.6GW available each year is very useful to the National Grid. Adding 5.6GW per year on top would be music to their ears as it allows them to balance or store energy for the UK for later use in the evening peak. For once they will be more relaxed when everyone puts the kettle on in the break of the UK Soaps.

So, keep an eye out for Vehicle to Grid offerings once you have purchased you EV. More ways to earn money. Back to the early days of PV on the roof.

About tagware

I've worked in IT for over 30 years. As the owner of one of the earlier AutoDesk Dealerships, when Richard Handyside was the main UK guy in The Cut! We supplied complete CAD, Networks and visualisation systems to Corporate clients such as RIBAS, Channel 4, NHS, BBC, Merrill Lynch, COMET Plc, Morgan Stanley too mention a few. We also developed the graphical ADB system for the Department of Health and a graphically lead Asset system for Merrill Lynch. Subsequently became a contract IT Consultant in both Developement and Production area's for both Large and small businesses. Which is what I'm still doing.
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