Press Release

Press Release

Building a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) Using Storage Batteries on Electric Vehicles and Participating in the V2G Aggregator Business - On Conducting the First Domestic Demonstration for Bi-Directional Energy Flow Between an Electric Vehicle Storage Battery and the Electrical Grid -

May 30, 2018
Toyota Tsusho Corporation
Chubu Electric Power Co.,Inc.

Toyota Tsusho Corporation (hereinafter, "Toyota Tsusho") and Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. (hereinafter, "Chubu Electric Power") will start this demonstration today, having jointly applied for the "V2G aggregator business" in the "FY2018 Subsidy for demonstrations to build a virtual power plant using demand-side energy resources" which is one of the subsidized projects for the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy and been granted the subsidy by the Sustainable open Innovation Initiative, an execution body for the subsidy, on May 29, 2018.

VPP is a system that integrates renewable energy sources such as solar power that exists decentralized manner in homes, factories and storage batteries, into a network to have it perform as if it were a single power plant. V2G (vehicle to grid) in particular is a technology that, in addition to charging electricity in storage batteries on plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHV/PHEV) and electric vehicles (EV), supplies the stored electricity to the power grid (hereinafter, "backfeed"). As deployment of renewable energy that is impacted by natural conditions such as insolation and air flow expands, some issues are expected to emerge such as an increase in power output fluctuations due to changes in natural conditions (hereinafter, "output fluctuations") and generation of excess electricity depending on the time of day. Much is expected of V2G as a technology that provides load balancing capabilities to respond to output fluctuations and that allow supply capability to be shifted by charging excess electricity which is then discharged when supply capability is needed.

A V2G control system that controls the bi-directional flow of electricity for multiple storage batteries on electric vehicles has been built, and a charging/discharging device has been installed in the parking lot in Toyota-shi, Aichi Prefecture for this demonstration. This will be used to verify the feasibility of load balancing using V2G and shifting of renewable energy supply capability. This demonstration seeks to assess the impact of V2G on the electrical grid and test the feasibility of using electric vehicles as a demand and supply adjuster by not only actually charging the storage battery of an electric vehicle but backfeeding power to the electrical grid. This demonstration will use V2G technology of Nuvve Corporation (Note 1) in the US to provide load balancing capabilities for short frequency fluctuations which require short response times and is difficult (frequency regulation (Note 2)).

In this demonstration, Toyota Tsusho as an aggregator will build a V2G control system (currently planning on using Nuvve Corporation's V2G system) as part of its aim to create additional value for the electric vehicle which includes providing load balancing for the electrical system and shifting supply capability for renewable energy. Chubu Electric Power will assess the impact of V2G on the electrical grid from the standpoint of a general electricity transmission and distribution utility and contribute to technology that leads to securing a new type of load balancing capability in order to provide stable and safe electricity at an affordable price.

Through this demonstration, Toyota Tsusho and Chubu Electric Power will uncover new value for the electric vehicle, whose market is expected to expand going forward, and will promote the further deployment of renewable energy and the spread of electric vehicles as a vehicle with low environmental impact to realize energy security and a low carbon society.

(Note 1) A start-up company based in the US that is rolling out V2G in the US and Europe. Provides frequency regulation to countries all over the world and has successfully commercialized V2G, for the first time in the world, in Denmark. Toyota Tsusho has gained an equity stake in the company in December 2017.

(Note 2) Electricity used by general power transmission and distribution utilities to maintain supply and demand balance (for frequency regulation and to keep supply and demand in balance) and to keep system frequency stable (at 50Hz/60Hz). Variations in the frequency reduce the quality of the electricity and can cause malfunctions in industrial equipment and so maintaining the system frequency is crucial. With the introduction of renewable energy, the balance between supply and demand is more likely to be disturbed and frequency regulation is expected to become more important.

(Note 3) A company that provides services to electricity generators, general power transmission and distribution utilities, and electricity retailers, utilizing energy resources.

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