A Living Lab awaiting a V2G terminal

Fab­rice Loc­ment is a uni­ver­si­ty full pro­fes­sor and a research sci­en­tist in the UTC-Avenues research unit, where he has been Deputy Direc­tor since Jan­u­ary. He is also Direc­tor of the Urban Engi­neer­ing Depart­ment. His research into elec­tro­mo­bil­i­ty has led to the cre­ation of STELLA, which has been trans­formed into a Liv­ing Lab as of June 2023.

In con­crete terms? «After val­i­dat­ing the con­cepts in the lab­o­ra­to­ry, in short, we shift­ed up a gear. We’ve now moved on to a plat­form where human inter­ac­tion has become a real­i­ty. For exam­ple, since June 2023, staff mem­bers with a badge for access to the charg­ing points have been able to charge their vehicles.

There are var­i­ous types of charg­ing point: alter­nat­ing cur­rent and high-pow­er direct cur­rent. Users can charge their elec­tric vehi­cle (EV) and in exchange their data will be retrieved. Since autumn 2023, data col­lec­tion has been even eas­i­er, since a graph­ic inter­face has been devel­oped by a com­put­er engi­neer­ing stu­dent using the OCCP (open charge point) pro­to­col (pro­grammed in Python via a data­base) to man­age the ‘dia­logue’ between an EV and the charg­ing points. This inter­face asks users for a cer­tain amount of infor­ma­tion, such as the state of charge of their vehi­cle when they arrive, the time at which they intend to leave again, the dis­tance they are going to cov­er when they leave, etc. This data is then processed by the sys­tem. This data is then processed by an algo­rithm for intel­li­gent man­age­ment of the sys­tem. A sys­tem which — in real time — will use the vehi­cle as an ener­gy store, either by lim­it­ing charg­ing pow­er or, in the event of a grid demand peak, inject­ing the vehicle’s ener­gy into the grid. This is known as V2G (Vehi­cle to Grid). Since June, we’ve been gath­er­ing quite a lot of data on loads, which we’re using to refine our sim­u­la­tion mod­els,» he explains.

How­ev­er, today, very few vehi­cles and charg­ing points are equipped with V2G. Only two Nis­san mod­els, two Mit­subishi mod­els, one Cit­roën mod­el, one Peu­geot mod­el and the Renault 5 are com­pat­i­ble with V2G. Notwith­stand­ing, this tech­nol­o­gy is set to take off. The proof? Since 2018, the UK has been work­ing on a Bus2Grid project, in which bus­es will be able to inject ener­gy into the nation­al grid when con­sump­tion demand peaks.

UTC is cur­rent­ly wait­ing for a V2G ter­mi­nal, a bidi­rec­tion­al ter­mi­nal fund­ed as part of the CPER’s Elec­tric Ener­gy 4.0 (EE4.0) project. «It’s a project that aims to devel­op the ecosys­tem by pro­mot­ing excel­lent research in elec­tri­cal engi­neer­ing while tak­ing into account envi­ron­men­tal and soci­etal con­straints. The project involves more than twen­ty local author­i­ties and indus­tri­al­ists, 85 researchers and 7 lab­o­ra­to­ries at uni­ver­si­ties in the Hauts de France region, includ­ing Lille, UPJV (Jules Verne, Amiens) and the Uni­ver­si­ty of Artois. At UTC, two lab­o­ra­to­ries are involved in the project are Rober­val and Avenues,» explains Fab­rice Locment.

What UTC-Avenues’ role in the EE4.0 project? «The aim is to devel­op a Liv­ing Lab by inte­grat­ing new func­tion­al­i­ties, in par­tic­u­lar V2G. At the moment, to my knowl­edge, there are only two or three mod­els of V2G ter­mi­nals on the mar­ket, one of which is sold by ABB E‑Mobility (ABB is a world leader in elec­tri­fi­ca­tion and automa­tion tech­nolo­gies). We are wait­ing for an ABB ter­mi­nal to refine our sim­u­la­tion mod­els,» he concludes.

Le magazine

Avril 2024 - N°62

Faire face aux enjeux environnementaux

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