Geli Enables BMW EV Demand Response Program - Case Study
BMW Technology Group planned to launch a ground-breaking electric vehicle (EV) program called i ChargeForward that would allow individual BMW i3 owners to earn money by participating in demand response (DR) events. However, in order for BMW to participate in Pacific Gas & Electric’s day-ahead and real-time DR markets, it needed to guarantee 100 kilowatts (kW) of demand reduction. BMW could not guarantee that the fleet of vehicles in the field would always be plugging in and charging, so the company turned to Geli to integrate an energy storage solution that would firm DR capacity in PG&E territory and provide various behind-the-meter services.
Geli & BMW integrated second-life Mini E batteries from EVGrid, a Princeton Power power converter, Kaco New Energy solar inverters, and EV chargers from companies such as ChargePoint and ABB. Behind-the-meter functionality not only includes microgrid management and load control, but Geli’s software reports real-time operating statistics and predictions for operating capabilities to BMW’s central server in Munich, Germany. When PG&E calls for a demand response dispatch, BMW first calls on customer cars in the field for available energy capacity and then requests the integrated Geli system deliver the remaining required energy commitment. If Geli’s software reports that there is not enough battery capacity to meet PG&E’s obligations, it can control on-site loads such as the EV chargers.
Building The Future Of Transportation
As automakers sell an increasing number of EVs, they are no longer just car companies but energy companies. This project is a breakthrough use of second life vehicle batteries and paves the way for integration of EVs as grid resources.