Twenty-one winning energy projects have been chosen to benefit from a £30 million UK government funding boost, as part of its drive to unlock the potential of vehicle-to-grid technology.

The V2G schemes will see companies from across the electric vehicle industry, including energy suppliers, car manufacturers, infrastructure operators as well as academic experts, join forces to research, design and develop their ideas, following their successful bids in a competition led by Innovate UK.

Through exploring and trialling the revolutionary technology and its commercial opportunities, the aim is to find out whether energy from electric vehicles can be stored and used to power homes and businesses.

Companies involved in the huge investment programme, using funding from the Department of Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV), include Nissan, OVO Energy, Octopus Energy, Cisco, Flexisolar and AT Kearney.

Business Minister, Richard Harrington said: “The UK’s automotive industry is a great British success story and as set out in our ambitious Industrial Strategy we are determined to lead the way in innovative, low-emission vehicle production.

“We have shown that growing the economy while cutting emissions, can, and should, go hand in hand. Vehicle-to-grid technology provides another opportunity for the UK to showcase to the world our leading expertise in game-changing automotive and low carbon technologies.”

One large-scale project in Oxford, EDF Energy’s V2GO scheme, aims to demonstrate how V2G charging can be used in dense urban areas. Last year the city’s air pollution breached the legal limit. This scheme will evaluate potential business models for fleet operators.

Dan Bentham, head of R&D smart customers, EDF Energy said that EVs will play an important role in the future of UK energy and its economy, and reduce emissions: “Through 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.”

Upside Energy secured a total £4.7 million in funding for three projects,  including EDF Energy’s V2GO programme which it will be heading up. Other projects include HAVEN and V2Street.

Dr Graham Oakes, its founder and chief scientist, said: “We need to overcome issues for on-street and home charging infrastructure, and questions about allowing many vehicles to charge whilst maintaining grid balance and stability.

“This funding will allow Upside and our partners to maximise the potential of electric vehicles to consumers, local authorities and the energy system, and help build a new, cleaner and more equitable, energy system for the UK.”

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