eCar Charging

Electric vehicle adoption:

Sales of electric vehicles (“EVs”) continue to exceed forecasts by a considerable margin. The range of expectations includes a forecast that EV sales will grow from 462,000 globally in 2016 to 41 million in 2040[1]. This fleet would consume an estimated 2,700TWh of electricity, equivalent to 11% of global electricity demand in 2015[2].

Projected sales of EVs

This increase in power consumption will have a massive impact on distribution grids. It has been estimated that plugging just six EVs into the grid in a single street in the UK could cause brown-outs[3].

Both the French and UK governments have recently announced that by 2040 no new petrol- or diesel-only cars or vans will be permitted to be sold. According to a National Grid report[4], peak demand for electricity to power these vehicles could add around 18GW to the current peak of 61GW. Delivering this power to consumers will place huge demands on the grid and so grid reinforcement requirements leveraging the benefits of CTS technology may offer significant opportunities for the Company.

The Ofgem ‘My Electric Avenue’ research project concluded that powering EVs would mean that across Britain 32% of low voltage circuits (312,000) will require reinforcing when 40% – 70% of customers have EVs based on 3.5kW chargers[5]. These problems will only be exacerbated when 7kW chargers are used.

Underground car-park with charging points

Already, the ratio of EVs to charging points in the UK is approaching the tipping point of 10:1 (beyond which charging congestion and blockages occur), having risen from 0.8:1 to 7.3:1 in the four years from 2012 – 2016[6]. In the UK, new legislation was introduced in June 2017 (The Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill) to mandate the provision of EV charging points at filling stations and motorway service areas. This presents a huge challenge to grid owners and operators to deliver power to consumers in the volume and at the time required.

The RethinkX Report[7] goes further and suggests that 95% of passenger miles in the US by 2030 could be EV (although 40% of owned vehicles will still be powered by internal combustion engines). The necessary grid reinforcement associated with such a significant increase in demand due to the electrification of transport is an ideal application for CTS technology, especially in congested metro areas.

[1] Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) Report, February 2016

[2] BNEF report, February 2016

[3] Green Alliance Report, People Power – how consumer choice in changing the UK energy system, April 2017

[4] National Grid, Future Energy Scenarios, July 2017

[5] https://www.eatechnology.com/projects/my-electric-avenue/

[6] AutoExpress study, April 2017

[7] RethinkX Report, Rethinking Transportation 2020 – 2030, May 2017