Funding worth up to Â£30 million has today (12 February) been awarded for 21 vehicle-to-grid (V2G) projects that could enable electric cars and other vehicles to deliver electricity back to the smart grid.
The funding will be used for projects to develop, trial and evaluate potential business models for fleet operatorsâ€™ use of electric vehicles and their suitability for vehicle to grid (V2G) charging.
The competition for government funding, run by Innovate UK, saw a host of winners including SSE Services, Nissan, OVO Energy, Octopus Energy, Cisco, Flexisolar and AT Kearney.
According to the government, the investment will help deliver on its ambition, set out in the Automotive Sector Deal, to â€œbe at the forefront of low-emission and electric vehicle productionâ€.
Among the projects to have been awarded funding is a trial in Oxford led by EDF Energy R&D UK for a large scale demonstration of V2G charging using 100 electric fleet vehicles (cars and vans) from a number of organisations including several delivery and taxi companies.
The project will develop, trial and evaluate potential business models for fleet operatorsâ€™ use of electric vehicles and their suitability for V2G charging, the government has claimed.
The consortium is made up of eight organisations with expertise in energy and power markets and systems, fleet operation value chains and electric mobility: EDF Energy R&D UK, University of Oxford, Oxfordshire County Council, Arrival, EO Charging, Upside Energy, and Fleet Innovation.
Transport Minister, Jesse Norman said: â€As the number of electric vehicles grows and their battery capabilities increase, there is a huge opportunity for them to make a significant contribution to a smart grid.
â€œThese projects are at the cutting edge of their field. Just like the visionary designs of Brunel and Stephenson in transport, they could revolutionise the ways in which we store and manage electricity, both now and in the future.â€
Dan Bentham, head of R&D, smart customers at EDF Energy, said: â€œElectric vehicles will play an important role in the future of UK energy and its economy. They will have a beneficial impact on the environment by reducing emissions and improving air quality.
â€œThrough our research, EDF Energy will use new technologies, business models and smart systems to make low carbon transport, and the infrastructure and market conditions needed for its success, a reality.