AMPECO participates in Eurelectric’s EVision Business Hub Roundtables
The EU is revising its main EV charging law (Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Regulation), and it will introduce mandatory targets for EU countries to see the deployment of public charging infrastructure along their main highways. This will require collaboration between market players, and the dialogue between distribution system operators (DSOs) and charging point operators (CPOs) is key to properly planning and executing the rollout of tens of thousands of chargers.
On this topic, the EU electricity industry trade body in Brussels, Eurelectric, launched a series of roundtables dedicated to increasing the visibility of DSOs’ viewpoints and perspectives on the issues pertaining to the whole E-Mobility ecosystem. The roundtables involved players from across the sector, with AMPECO participating as one of Europe’s leading CPMS providers. The goal was to identify the challenges facing E-Mobility deployment and its relation to distribution grids and ultimately find solutions and policy recommendations to help alleviate these barriers. More on the insights and proposed solutions can be found in this report. To delve deeper, we encourage you to review the full document. In the meantime, we’ve outlined the key topics of discussion and provided a summary of AMPECO’s contributions to the dialogue.
Unlocking the potential of grid integration for EV charging infrastructure
Simplified connection procedures for faster roll-out of EV charging infrastructure
The first roundtable focused on connection processes. Discussions were divided into three segments: digitalizing the process, standardizing procedures, and fostering stakeholder communication. As public charging was the primary focus, participants agreed that lengthy connection procedures obstruct EV infrastructure growth, risking CPOs’ plans. The key bottleneck is not connecting itself, but the authorization/installation of the charge point – which often takes up most of the lead time. The proposed solution was to establish a shared comprehension of connection procedures, outlining the process from receiving a charging point application to finalizing that request, including activating the charging point.
Overcoming challenges in network planning and congestion management
Network planning and congestion management are essential elements for distribution system operators (DSO) to handle the rapidly-increasing demand for electrification. The second roundtable was devoted to exploring these topics, with a focus on public charging infrastructure as well as private charging. The goal is to ensure the grid can accommodate new demands while minimizing costs. To achieve this, interventions should be implemented to increase hosting capacity and prevent congestions that could endanger security and quality of supply.
In the context of EVs, unmanaged charging infrastructure can lead to significant congestion on already heavily-loaded grids, where peak energy load is expected to increase substantially (up to 88% in multi-unit dwellings and 87% on highways). Transformer utilization could be pushed beyond rated capacity, leading to potential overloads. Network operators should consider various solutions to combat this, including reconfiguring the network, flexible connection agreements, traditional reinforcements, distributed flexibility, and different tariff options.
Solutions to promote flexibility on the grid, such as smart charging and V2G technologies in public and private charging, hold significant potential for making grids greener and more flexible, which was looked at more closely in the third roundtable.
Source: Power Sector Accelerating emobility: Can utilities turn EVs into an grid asset
Making the grid greener and more flexible with smart charging
The market for smart charging tariffs and services is rapidly increasing in Europe. However, the availability of these services greatly varies from one European market. Mainstream dynamic time-of-use energy tariffs are most prevalent in the Nordics while emerging similar tariffs are more widespread in Great Britain. In contrast, no such tariffs exist in countries in Eastern Europe. Generally, smart charging tariffs or services rely on favorable energy market regulatory frameworks such as time-varying pricing and consumer awareness.
Source: Regulatory Assistance Project (2022): The time is now: smart charging of electric vehicles
Smart charging can be beneficial in a number of ways, allowing for cost savings, increased ease of use for customers, and flexibility to reduce electricity demand peaks for the grid. It also facilitates the integration of more renewables while ensuring lower costs for wholesale and retail electricity prices.
DSOs face various challenges, including managing the grid with market-based price signals, responding to local congestion, and integrating renewables and local generation. Roundtable participants fully support the transposition of the Energy Market Directive, which would give consumers more power in the energy system. They advocated for advertising campaigns to raise awareness of the benefits of smart charging and proposed that all new chargers should be set to “smart” by default and mandating consumer information to educate people about its advantages.
AMPECO’s engagement with European CPOs and DSOs: driving new business opportunities
Through our membership in Eurelectric’s EVision Business Hub, we successfully engaged with leading European CPOs and DSOs to solve the challenges they face with the accelerated deployment of charging infrastructure. Throughout the three roundtables and several surveys, we shared insights from our experience across key European markets on how our charging platform creates new business opportunities.
Solving the emerging challenges for scaling EV charging requires both a sound technical solution and a corresponding business strategy to go along with it. On the one hand, we highlighted the benefits of utilizing open standards like OCPP and OpenADR and relying on scalable APIs for maximum integration flexibility with existing systems. On the other hand, sophisticated electricity tariffs provide the necessary financial incentives and signals to engage EV drivers. Combined, this approach simplifies the charging experience, optimizes operations and supports multiple charging use cases for a greener and more flexible grid.
“There’s a clear need to systematise the use of digital platforms, create fair and transparent data access and allow the use of anonymised and aggregated data. Smart charging, enabled by innovative platforms like AMPECO, can facilitate the procurement of flexibility services and play an integral role in managing grid congestion.”Louise Rullaud, Head of Distribution & Market Facilitation at Eurelectric
Talk to one of our EV charging experts about your company’s needs, and let us demonstrate how AMPECO’s EV charging management solution helps you achieve your goals and set you up for long-term success.