says that while electric cars are an important step towards a more sustainable society, cars and their batteries can do so much more than eliminate tailpipe emissions, as stationary electric cars have the potential to ‘power your house, your appliances, or even return power to the energy grid’.
The company said: “To capitalise on that potential and help support the transition to a smarter, more sustainable, and more efficient energy grid, we are launching Volvo Cars Energy Solutions. This is a completely new business unit that will offer energy storage and charging-related technologies and services that form the connective tissue between our cars, our customers’ lives, the efficient use of energy, and society at large.
“Bi-directional charging is a technology that allows an electric car to give back extra battery power to a compatible grid, helping to balance the grid during peak hours and reduce the need for fossil-generated electricity. Our new flagship car, the fully electric EX90 SUV, will be the first Volvo car equipped with all the necessary hardware and — over time — the software to enable bi-directional charging and direct energy storage from solar.”
Together with Göteborg Energi Nät AB, the local grid company in Volvo’s Swedish hometown of Gothenburg, the company is launching one of the first vehicle-to-grid (V2G) pilot programmes that aims to test such V2G technologies on the local energy grid and in a home environment with real customers. The pilot is uses a low-cost AC wallbox, as this will help to ‘accelerate the widespread adoption of the technology’.
“The pilot project aims to not only gain acceptance from a grid company and to demonstrate to other grid companies that V2G programmes can provide tangible benefits but also create a testing arena for new technologies that are central to the future of Volvo Cars outside our labs.”
Alexander Petrofski, the new head of Volvo Cars Energy Solutions, said: “With bi-directional charging, you can use your car battery as an extra energy supply, for example to provide power to your home, other electric devices or another electric Volvo car. The next step would be to enable this feature all around Sweden, and hopefully that will pave the way for even broader acceptance of similar charging and energy-storage services around Europe.”