Published on September 1st, 2013 | by James Ayre0
The Eco-Station — Solar-Integrated EV Fast Charging Station Optimized By Energy Storage
The Eco-Station — a solar-integrated EV fast-charging station design that’s been made more efficient and economical than other fast-charging stations through the use of energy storage — will be hitting the market soon. According to the project’s backers — CODA Energy, Energy Vault, and Growing Energy Labs (GELI) — the first Eco-Station will soon be deployed in the San Francisco Bay Area, where the technology will be tested before potentially being deployed elsewhere.
The design looks pretty promising. And it of course gives you the option of powering your EV with 100% solar energy, even when you’re out about town and away from your home solar PV system, something that will no doubt add to its appeal.
The charging station will incorporate a 175 kW solar array, DC fast charging, a 40kWh CODA Core™ UDP energy storage system, and GELI’s intelligent Energy Operating System (EOS) software.
DC charging, which refuels a typical EV battery in 30-60 minutes, improves the usability of EVs by extending their effective range and enabling road trips. These stations require high quantities of power to operate, and as a result, incur costly utility peak demand charges that can add up to hundreds or thousands of dollars per month. The Eco-Station contains a battery energy storage system (ESS) supplied by CODA Energy that mitigates this problem by serving as a buffer between the charger and the grid, lowering the charging station’s peak power demand. The addition of GELI’s intelligent Energy Operating System (EOS) software will enable the Eco-Station to make operational decisions based on the price of power and energy, which in conjunction with demand response programs, could bring site operators new sources of revenue.
Energy storage enables the Eco-Station to make smart choices with respect to electricity prices and the environment. During peak consumption periods, costly utility demand charges are minimized. At night, stored solar power can be used to charge vehicles and inexpensive, off-peak energy can be used to recharge the battery. When the Eco-Station is unoccupied during the day, it can sell excess generated or stored power back to the grid and generate revenue.