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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Developing Strategies for Plug-in Electric Vehicle and Smart Grid Integration in California: A Qualitative Analysis of Expert Opinions

  • Author(s): Bedir, Abdulkadir
  • Ogden, Joan M.
  • Turrentine, Thomas T.
  • et al.

This empirical study first identifies vehicle-grid integration (VGI) strategies as discussed by stakeholders in California, then, provides a feasibility assessment for these strategies focusing on technical and market challenges. VGI strategies presented in this paper include four components: (1) plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) load identification and tracking; (2) choice of a load management strategy, (3) deployment of enabling technologies, and, finally, (4) providing grid services and compensating participants. The assessment is performed based on a qualitative analysis of expert opinions gathered by a series of stakeholder interviews. These interviews were conducted with representatives of 18 organizations from the government, electric utility, and PEV sectors. The participants expressed their opinions about potential VGI strategies based on personal or company experiences. The qualitative data is analyzed under three categories of load management, which include dynamic pricing, demand response, and energy storage. The results show that both, technical and market challenges exist in each of the load management strategies, except the most basic dynamic pricing strategy. This strategy, which provides special time-of-use rates for PEV-owner households, is currently being implemented by all major utilities in California. The findings also feature a list of technical and market challenges that need to be taken into consideration by stakeholders in VGI-related decision-making.

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