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The University of Delaware and NRG Energy have announced that electricity from electric vehicles (EVs) has become an official resource of PJM Interconnection as part of the eV2g project, which utilitizes EV-to-grid technology.

The university and NRG began work in September 2011 to move from research results to plans to commercialize the technology, which provides a two-way interface between EVs and the power grid to enable vehicle owners to sell electricity back to the grid while they are charging their EVs.

On Feb. 27, the project became an official participant in PJM's frequency regulation market. Since then, the project has been selling power services from a fleet of EVs to PJM.

“This demonstrates that EVs can provide both mobility and stationary power while helping make the grid more resilient and ultimately generating revenue for electric vehicle owners,” says NRG Executive Vice President Denise Wilson.

For grid operators, the technology has the potential to balance the power provided by intermittent renewable resources such as wind and solar, according to the companies. Energy storage, such as large-scale batteries or those in a fleet of vehicles, can take the wind’s power generated at night and store it to use when demand is higher.

“PJM changed rules for participation in the regulation service market to decrease the minimum amount of power needed to participate, and we implemented new rules that recognize and compensate faster, more accurately responding resources, such as batteries,” explains Michael J. Kormos, senior vice president of PJM operations. “We knew that by doing so, [we] would attract innovation and would find potential for energy storage or other technologies. We’re glad to be a part of this project and hope that this inspires continued innovation among our partners and others in the industry.”

The technology is expected to initially help managers of commercial EV fleets by providing revenue while the vehicles are parked, with individual EV owners to eventually follow. The system is currently in development with restricted test fleets and is not now a commercial offering.

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