Military Embedded Systems

Non-tactical vehicle-to-grid tech can help reduce energy costs for USAF, Army


October 27, 2015

Mariana Iriarte

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

WASHINGTON. At the Los Angeles Air Force Base, the Defense Department’s all-electric, non-tactical vehicle completed testing for the vehicle-to-grid (V2G) certification. The U.S. Air Force, Army, industry, and academia formed a partnership to develop V2G bi-directional flow of power technology to use in plug-in electrical vehicles (PEV).

According to officials, the V2G project determined that PEVs could operate and be capable of both receiving and providing power to the electric grid without impacting the Air Force’s mission. When connected to a charging station, V2G technology works through a PEV’s battery using bi-directional flow of power to either draw or discharge energy from the grid.

“The test marks a breakthrough in emerging technology because it allows for the PEVs to not only offer a clean-fuel alternative for our vehicle fleet, but also serve as resources to the electrical grid when they’re not being driven,” says Dr. Camron Gorguinpour, the Air Force’s director of transformational innovation and project administrator. “Now that CAISO and Southern California Edison conducted the certification testing, we anticipate the Los Angeles Air Force Base PEV fleet entering the utility grid’s ancillary service marketplace by year’s end.”

With the V2G technology, the Los Angeles AFB PEVs can provide more than 500 kilowatts of power to the grid. It will enable installation to earn credit for power discharged and could be used to offset energy costs, officials say. Electric and hybrid vehicles encompass the PEV fleet.

“This demonstration will help the Air Force understand the capabilities and lifecycle costs of PEVs as they are integrated into the service’s fleet,” Gorguinpour continues. “The lessons learned here will help us as we expand our pilot program to Joint Base Andrews, Maryland; Joint Base McGuire-Dix Lakehurst, New Jersey, and the Army’s Fort Hood, Texas.”

The California Independent System Operator and Southern California Edison conducted V2G certification testing.


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