General Motors is teaming up with seven other automakers and 15 electric utility companies to bring its OnStar-enabled Smart Grid to the masses. By working together, GM and other industry leaders hope to create a standardized Smart Grid for electric vehicle charging.
“The focus of this collaboration is to create a standard program that will allow utilities to work with different types of plug-in vehicles to more efficiently manage their demand on the grid,” said manager of electric transportation at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), Dan Bowermaster.
EPRI is working with GM and the project’s partners to develop the Smart Grid’s cloud-based Demand Response solution, or “the signal a utility sends to an energy management company communicating the supply and demand needs to the electric grid.” Once that signal has been sent, the “company then communicates with designated plug-in vehicles in the area to manage their energy consumption in accordance with the grid’s needs.”
In turn, the fully developed cloud-based system will “allow utilities to help reduce stress on the grid and costs to all utility customers,” said General Motors’ chief technology officer for Global Connected Consumer, Tim Nixon.
Other automakers participating in the project include Honda, BMW, Chrysler, Ford, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, and Toyota.