Smart grids are catalyzing the transition to low-carbon technologies like EVs and renewable energy

Smart grids are catalyzing the transition to low-carbon technologies like EVs and renewable energy

One of the biggest challenges in EV adoption comes in the form of electricity fulfillment issues. 


We have all gone through funny videos showing people charging their Tesla with a portable generator, while many adopters question the ability of current grids to fulfill the power required to charge EVs on a large scale. 


As a matter of fact, charging an EV doesn’t require as much energy as quoted by many enthusiasts, but if we were to consider a scenario where everyone in the household would use EVs, things could change dramatically:

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Adopting renewable energy sources like solar rooftops is a promising solution since they help lower the consumption of conventional energy drawn from the grid. 


However, there’s a problem with the mass adoption of solar rooftops as well: The grids in our cities were designed and deployed in an era when solar rooftops and energy generation on the demand side weren’t thought of. 


Therefore, despite being able to accommodate solar rooftops to a considerable extent, our grids aren’t best equipped to transition to a high rate of solar rooftop adoption.


Thus, the grids are one of the biggest bottlenecks when it comes to transitioning to technologies that help us meet our net zero goals. 


Most countries in the EU are set to ban the sale of gasoline and diesel cars by 2035, with Iceland planning to go all-electric as early as 2025.

EV Adoption

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Canada and the state of California are also aiming to follow the 2035 deadline to phase out fossil fuel cars, making it necessary for the administrations to come up with a concrete solution to meet the grid-related challenges.

In an encouraging development, UK’s Western Power Distribution (WPD) recently announced the Smart Meter Innovations and Test Network (SMITN) project to help planners optimize power distribution for connecting more low-carbon technologies.

EVs and heat pumps are major low-carbon technologies that are set to witness a massive surge in demand not only due to environmental concerns but due to the energy shortage caused by the Ukraine-Russia war.

This project will be implemented with the support of multiple stakeholders, including CGI, Haysys, Loughborough University and GHD, with CGI being the main stakeholder alongside WPD. 

Haysys will be assisting with the data collection, while Loughborough University will guide on network testing and algorithm adoption during the trials. 

GHD will extend its advisory and consultation services to WPD.

As discussed earlier, the aim of the SMITN project is to provide rich insights into the quality of power delivery to support data applications related to low-carbon technologies. 

The availability of more accurate data will help planners optimize the availability of electricity and even out all phases while reducing the impact of any faults. 

They will also be able to assess the need for extra capacity and future issues well in advance, as well as determine the grid infrastructure needed, including cable sizes and types.

Jenny Woodruff, innovation engineer at Western Power Distribution, finds that this will also help customers save money and enjoy a better user experience. 

This project is set to pave the way for installing more EV charging stations under the connectability pledge, thereby catalyzing the transition to low-carbon technologies like EVs and renewable energy

The X Future is an end-to-end innovation management platform, and we also provide consultancy services to governments, major corporations, and SMEs to accelerate innovation adoption. If you are looking for advisory and project management services for smart grid implementation, feel free to contact The X Future.

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