Baker, whose company specialises in establishing whether or not fleets can realistically operate electric vehicles, said that the initiative would require modern, high-power charging points, a robust local infrastructure, and collaboration with energy suppliers.
“The technology that exists today is very new, so the charge points are quite a bit bigger and much more high-powered. They tend to be fast chargers – 20kW to 50kW instead of the normal 7kW you put on the side of your house – so there would need to be work done with a charge point manufacturer,” he explained.
Baker added that fleets would be required to install a particular type of charging point in order to participate with his company’s own initiative trialling V2G charging, but could not name the manufacturer due to commercial sensitivities.
“You’d need to check that your local infrastructure was capable of taking the capacity and there would need to be contracts set up to sell that energy back to the grid, but that’s not as difficult as it sounds,” he said.
Baker said Fleet Innovations is appealing to operators to partake in practical analyses: “We’re looking for fleets between 100 and 300 vehicles; that’s our kind of sweet spot at the moment – organisations that are looking at electric vehicles and would be open to things like vehicle-to-grid. We’ll go higher than 300 but we won’t go lower.
“At the moment, this is a proof of concept for us. What we’re trying to do is prove first: does the fleet need electric vehicles? And secondly: would vehicle-to-grid work?”
Although the fundamental components of the technology exist, Baker described the package as a work in progress but, if successful, it could be rolled out across the UK and overseas.
• Van operators interested in taking part in a vehicle-to-grid trial with Fleet Innovations should call 0845 600 6880 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.