A new research study has found that using AI-powered smart chargers can have a big impact on the carbon footprint of EV charging
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Spotted: A new report by the Flexibility Responsive Energy Delivery project (FRED) finds that electric car drivers could save an average of £110 a year by using ‘smart charging’ to power up their cars at the most efficient times. The report shows that the use of smart chargers could reduce the carbon footprint of charging by more than 20 per cent by spreading out the demand for electricity to avoid peak times.
Smart chargers could be used to automate the charging process, turning on only when demand is low and electricity from wind and solar farms is more available. This would also prevent the grid from becoming overloaded in peak periods, keeping prices low.
The report was led by Evergreen Smart Power, and involved energy experts from the SPECIFIC Innovation and Knowledge Centre at Swansea University, in collaboration with energy companies such as myenergi, GenGame, and Energy Systems Catapult.
The research involved 250 members of the public who already use EVs. Participants in the project used myenergi’s zappi charging points and smart charging software platform. The platform uses AI to evaluate the driving and energy habits of individual customers and automatically charge their cars according to both their needs and energy costs.
Evergreens’ Peter Bullock said the research showed that smart charging using the platform can make a big difference, even where people are already charging efficiently. “It cuts the cost and the carbon for cheaper, cleaner driving. In our emerging green energy system, the energy we generate, for example through wind and solar – can be variable. Luckily, with electric cars, it is easy to be flexible with the times we consume energy. This is where smart charging is crucial, helping us create an energy system that is both low-carbon and efficient.”
As more and more people use and purchase EVs, there will be a greater need for electricity. In order to realise the promise of carbon savings, it will not be enough to simply use EVs, they will also need to be charged efficiently. This is why we are seeing a number of innovations designed to increase EV charging efficiencies. These range from recyclable batteries that can charge in under 2 minutes to charging stations that double as a drive-in.
Written By: Lisa Magloff