The Vast Electrical Sponge Provided by V2g Technology

Michael Giberson

In the realm of more-enthusiasm-but-no-more-analysis for vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology, Fereidoon Shioshansi at the EU Energy Policy Blog asks, “Will V2G Evolve Into A Great Electrical Sponge?”  He asks the question, and it is an excellent question to ask, but he doesn’t answer it.

Instead we get a little taste of claims made by researchers based on a pilot project – “the extra costs of making an EV battery V2G compatible could be as little as $1,500 while the potential reward may be as high as $3,000 per annum through a ‘load-balancing contract’ with a grid operator” – and follow those claims with the usual rather unconstrained imagination of exciting possibilities.

Actually, Shioshansi is better than many commentators on V2G because he at least realizes that there is more than just an electrical cord necessary to connect an the electric car and the vast power grid in need of load balancing services:

Additionally, the owner must reach an agreement with the grid operator – most likely through an aggregator and/or intermediary – to provide a reasonable revenue stream for the car owner while offering tangible storage and balancing service to the grid operator. These are formidable but not insurmountable challenges.

“Not insurmountable” is technically correct, but a casual stroll through history offers some perspective.  It took a literal act of Congress to get much third party access to the transmission grid (namely, the Energy Policy Act of 1992), and then it was several years before final rules governing third party access were issued by FERC.  It typically takes a supportive state law or regulation for local distribution companies to become very interested in helping consumers attached distributed energy sources to the local grid, and while energy policy folks have been talking about these issues for decades most places don’t have much in the way of effective state policies supporting distributed energy resources.  The physical proof-of-concept type issues are being solved, thanks in large part to the efforts of talented researchers at the University of Delaware and elsewhere, but the associated contractual/policy/institutional issues are far from being resolved.

In order to manage the safety and reliable operations of the grid, grid operators like to have some control over devices connected to the grid. V2G asks us to imagine a world in which consumers are attaching to the grid at times and points of convenience to the consumer, and then have the grid operator pay the consumer for some limited access to the battery capabilities of the electric vehicle for the uncertain amount of time the vehicle remains connected.  And advocates of these ideas ask us to believe, simultaneously, that electric vehicles with V2G technology will be available in large enough numbers to make it worth the trouble of someone to overcome all of these challenges, and yet not available in large enough numbers to overwhelm the electric system’s demand for load balancing service.

I haven’t done the analysis, but I can state with fairly high confidence that the demand for load balancing service is not perfectly elastic at the $5 – $10 day rates obtained by the three test cars in the University of Delaware/PJM pilot project.

So while Shioshansi asks a great question, his conclusion is an appropriately tempered “V2G technology may prove to be a welcomed blessing.” (Emphasis added.)  Hedging claims is probably wise in this space.


29 thoughts on “The Vast Electrical Sponge Provided by V2g Technology

  1. Super Vehicle to Grid (Super V2G) Cars as Powerful Power Plants!

    Without ignoring the excellent points you make in this article, there are revolutionary energy systems on the horizon which may promote the necessary changes more rapidly than might be imagined.

    A Chava Energy development called SPICE™ (Self Powered Internal Combustion Engine) utilized in hybrid cars and trucks is expected to run when parked, spinning a generator. Fueled by very small quantities of demineralized water, an ECHO™ (Energy from Collapsing Hydrogen Orbits) fueled SPICE is potentially another 10 kW V2G system.

    Second generation V2G automobiles, with better batteries, might be able to provide as much as 25 kW using a two way plug. It has been estimated that owners of such vehicles might earn as much as $3,000 per year.

    We are also developing what could become Third generation V2G vehicles. Steven Letendre, a V2G analyst at Green Mountain College, has termed our work Super V2G. Future cars and trucks may be able to provide up to 150 kW with a wireless connection to suitably equipped parking spaces. Payments to owners might very well be sufficient to pay for the vehicle.

    These breakthroughs could make possible the gradual elimination of the need for batteries of every variety. As a harbinger of the future, an early MagGen™ is expected to first demonstrate the ability to replace the need to plug-in a plug-in hybrid. Two kilowatts is all the power that can be taken from a typical wall socket. A pair of one kilowatt MagGens might demonstrate a compact, inexpensive, capability to end the need to plug-in. This will relieve the concern that plug-in electric and hybrid vehicles would depend on power generated using fossil fuel.

    MagGen powered cars are expected to be capable of initially generating at least 75 kW and later 100 kW. In the case of luxury cars, trucks and buses 150 kW could prove practical. MagGen is potentially a Chava Super V2G system.

    A substantial number of vehicles powered by MagGen, or its water sipping counterpart, an ECHO fueled SPICE, in a parking area or garage – might transform the array of parked vehicles into a multi-megawatt power plant. The average vehicle is parked 90% of the time.

    These breakthroughs will be greeted with understandable skepticism by anyone with science training. However, fractional Hydrogen, trademarked as ECHO, has had some initial validation at Rowan University and GEN3 Partners – advisors to Fortune 100 firms. More is needed. National laboratories would be excellent venues for definitive evaluations of both fractional Hydrogen and even harder to believe magnetic generators.

    The economics are likely to prove compelling. Until now, car ownership has been an expense. Vehicle to Grid power will change that dramatically. Doubtless, when millions of cars and trucks are selling power to the grid, the price per kilowatt paid will gradually decline. However, it still seems conceivable that the cost of many vehicles might be paid for by utilities. The parked cars, trucks and buses, each become decentralized power plants – a rapid, cost-effective alternative to the many tough and costly environmental challenges of constructing new coal burning and nuclear power generation facilities.

    Utilities and vehicle manufacturers will have a unique opportunity to lead the nation and the world into a dramatic reduction in the need for oil. Imagine a 24/7 development program.

    The positive economic impact can hardly be exaggerated.

  2. Michael, the assumption is that people will replace their present gas powered vehicles on a 1 on one basis with extended range electrical vehicles, and that many of those vehicles will be parked all day long on week days, so that their battery stored electricity will be available from the grid. Note that if people want to drive their cars during the day time, they are not going to want to a discharged battery. The V2G theory reqires that there be electric vehicles that will be voluntarily parked by owners during week days. The battery capacity of these vehicles would not be required to power transportation and thus would be available to support the grid.

    The V2G advocates simply assume people are going to make these one on one replacement of their current vehicles that would be required to yield the unused vehicle batteries. But what if instead people buy electric bicycles to replace cars for short trips? What if they buy ultra light vehicles, or chose to commute to work or shopping by electric bus or by light rail?

  3. Michael: Look at the date on Goldes comment.

    I have never understood the theory behind V2G cars.

    If a BEV is plugged into the grid and is charging, it is doing so because the owner needs a fully charged vehicle to conduct his business after the charging is complete. The grid operator that uses the electric cars battery as a storage mechanism runs the risk of leaving it not fully charged when the car owner next needs it. What is the Grid operator’s liability if the car, having been plugged in to charge after the owner returned home, is fully discharged when the owner wakes up in the middle of the night and discovers that his child must be taken to the ER, stat?

    If the vehicle is a hybrid of the Volt type, this is not so much of a problem, but the grid operator is substituting inefficient mobile ICE for efficient industrial scale generators. Another possibility that makes no sense.

    Further, the V2G BEV will suffer a great deal more wear on its most expensive component, the batteries, than would an ordinary BEV. The grid operator could compensate the BEV owner for that damage, but that raises the why bother question. Wouldn’t the grid operator be better off with industrial strength non mobile batteries, such as ceramic sodium sulfur cells, that could last longer, and would not be built with lightweight technology necessary for BEVs?

  4. Michael, thank you for your courtesy in not deleting my comment above. I have no problem with critics or criticism. The long series of posts referred to ends with some salient remarks by Frank Roarty.

    The long period of time required to bring revolutionary energy technologies to the point where they become practical might benefit from being compared with the hundreds of billions of dollars spent until now on hot fusion.

    Entrepreneurs are by nature optimists. I have been surprised in the past by the slow progress with technology that seemed closer than time revealed was actually the case, to commercialization.

    The comment by Fat Man lights up a few of the problems with the initial V2G concept. Second generation V2G systems will undoubtedly be better.

    Cars as power plants is a powerful concept. The technology that will make it practical and sufficient to displace the need for fossil fuels is not simple, but is slowly taking shape in laboratory experiments.

    Oil topped $84 a barrel today. If the price continues to rise (and with India and China consuming more of it all the time, that is likely to happen irrespective of belief in “peak oil”) three digit oil prices are a real threat to economic recovery.

    Revolutionary breakthrough technologies are urgently needed. Magnetic generators and fractional Hydrogen are clearly difficult to believe, and there have been legions of deluded inventors and a few scam artists who have made it even more difficult to take such technology seriously.

    However, day by day we make progress in the laboratories. Once several more labs repeat the Rowan experiments, and design even better ones of their own, fractional Hydrogen will move toward mainstream science.

    Following the 60 or so papers presented on Low Energy Nuclear Reactions at the recent meeting of the American Chemical Society, that process is finally happening with “cold fusion”.

    Magnetic generators will probably not be believed until a self-running device is demonstrated that continues to run for enough time to convince skeptics that Werner Heisenberg was correct, when he stated in 1927″ “that I believe it is possible to use magnetism as an energy source”.

  5. Many things have been said about Heisenberg, who was awarded a Nobel Prize in physics, but this is the first time I’m aware that anyone thought he was nuts.

    Hans Coler demonstrated a generator in Germany, in 1925, that utilized a magnetic system to generate electricity. It was examined by distinguished scientists who could find no evidence of error or fraud.

    Two years later, Heisenburg suggested we could utilize magnetism as an energy source.

    In 1937 Coler demonstrated a 6,000 watt generator. The German navy tried to put such generators, which converted an unknown source of energy, into production to recharge submarine batteries without the need for a sub to surface.

    The laboratory was bombed a few months before Germany surrendered. Coler then went to England, where a Report on his work was published in 1946 by British Intelligence. Initially classified, it was made public in 1980 and is now available on the internet.

    A Chava engineer who has been investigating the Coler work gave a well received presentation at a Symposium on the theme of Hans Coler demonstrated a generator in Germany, in 1925, that utilized a magnetic system to generate electricity. It was examined by distinguished scientists who could find no evidence of fraud.

    In 1927, Werner Heisenburg, later awarded a Nobel Prize, suggested we could utilize magnetism as an energy source. He may have been impressed by the Coler work.

    In 1937 Coler demonstrated a 6,000 watt generator. The German navy tried to put such generators, which converted an unknown source of energy, into production to recharge submarine batteries without the need for a sub to surface.

    The laboratory was bombed a few months before Germany surrendered. Coler then went to England, where a Report on his work was published in 1946 by British Intelligence. Initially classified, it was made public in 1980 and is now available on the internet.

    A Chava engineer, who has been investigating the Coler technology, in Vienna, gave a presentation at the Symposium on Space (Vacuum) Energy that was held in Vienna, Austria, last month.

  6. The paragraph in the middle of the post above should begin with Hans Coler demonstrated a generator in Germany, in 1925…

    Due to a glitch in my word processor, it picked up the beginning of the final paragraph in error.

  7. You might want to retract that “maybe,” Fat Man.

    Cash back cars are a fiction of regulatory pioneers. Put a price on the externalities and let the market work, for god’s sake. And walk before you go hyperspace.

  8. Hilarious…type in Mark Goldes in Google, and the first suggested completion is…………..Fraud.

  9. The Wright Brothers flew, as you know, in 1903. But many scientists considered them to be frauds until 1908, when then President Teddy Roosevelt had someone check out those bicycle mechanics. When he confirmed that they had flown, The N.Y. Times, Scientific American and the Smithsonian all changed their tune.

  10. Mark, the Wright Brothers story is a good point of reference.

    Many many people tried to develop flying machines, and had failed to that point. Many scientists proclaimed flying machines impossible. The Wright Brothers were ridiculed for their ideas, as were the many others.

    Once the Wright Brothers demonstrated flying machines in a manner convincing to independent and skeptical observers, people stopped ridiculing them. Today, of course, over a century later, they are remembers and honored for their contributions to society.

    Almost all of the others who worked on flying machines, once-ridiculed, are now forgotten.

    It is almost inherent in the development of truly-revolutionary technologies that the developer will be misunderstood and mistrusted up until the point that the technology is convincingly demonstrated to independent observers (usually multiple times).

    So I think your best approach is to go ahead and build the thing, make it work, and show us that the conventionally minded scientists and technologists are wrong. Until it is demonstrated, most people won’t accept such revolutionary claims. Me included.

  11. Self-diagnosing power supplies are a nifty side-effect of this notion. Whether your fully-charged solar (…magnetic monopole, bioeconomic bubble; the consumer won’t care for more than $8k/5y…) powered vehicle outperforms your requirements or not, you don’t want it depreciating fast or instantly when it can’t make its useful operation time spec. Batteries that degrade when worked won’t be worked much, but ultracaps, power transistors, controllers, and their spares are going to matter.

    Another side-effect on the face of this is that given Americans’ elasticity on work hours, people would simply -not go home- because their car is feeding the grid (if the car-end is doing sponge duty.) Alternately we’d stay parked aggressively while using what mobility was handy. More charitably, we might participate in building the parking spot’s capabilities somehow, pooling for energy storage and mechanic facilities along with the car-park duty. If only cisternage, plant nursery, day care etc. would work on small investments where we expect to have left them, like that.

  12. Mark is still at it pitching nonsense tales of free energy dreams he hasn’t and will never evidence. Back in 2004 there was the fully working magnetic device a derivation of the infamous MEG courtesy of Tom ( my good friend and “psychic mafia” pal Ira Einhorn couldn’t have chopped up Holly Maddox ) Bearden. Where is it today? No I don’t mean Holly Maddox’s body, they found that where Ira put her, but the magic transformer? It’s broken and can’t be fixed due to a shortage of unobtanium. Mark’s fish tale is that only one ever worked and it died on a bumpy car ride before any third party could verify it. Rather than build another, he moved on to a different scheme? Why? Mark said it was to get to market faster. Borrowing a trademark from a famous garage door opener company, he bamboozled Lee Felsenstein into believing the nonsense that one can have an electromagnetic generator that is induction free.

    You see in the whacky world of free energy nuts and frauds Maxwell’s Equations aren’t so much incredibly accurate descriptions of electromagnetics, as merely helpful suggestions that small minded engineers and scientists have built the modern world upon. So where those stodgy scientists would tell us that any change in magnetic flux crossing a conductor induces voltage, Mark got Lee believing that by changing a reluctance gap, IE changing flux density, something happens involving magic beans. Lee sincerely wants to see free energy so badly that despite a prior 25 year history of Mark making one silly claim after another, Lee bought in. Mark gets the millions in angel investments, Lee gets the egg on his face.

    Ah but the

  13. Alas, just as the magic garage door opener was just days away from third party validation, it too developed a problem that yet another new wonder device would overcome and make “acceleration to market” so much easier. Not enough? Because there is more. Yes, Mark claims one of his “labs” in Florida has an overunity electric motor. Just a few more tweaks, several million more in angel money and they will almost be able to overcome the sticky spot.

    In the meantime he’s latched onto claiming passive refrigeration, the laws of thermodynamics be damned. Mark has previously claimed that a car went some 5000 miles powered only by sucking heat out of the air and leaving a trail of cold mass behind. Oh, but wouldn’t you know it? The inventor ran short of funds. So he yanked the magic engine and sold the car. Mark hasn’t said where the magic engine went. There was also supposed to be a golf cart and an outboard motor, but they seem to have disappeared too. Maybe it was the dark forces working for big oil that nabbed them.

    And if all of this is not enough, Mark’s taken to borrowing from Black Light Power’s claims to lower than ground state hydrogen. You see according to nutjobs like Mills and Mark, hydrogen having been around since the dawn of the universe turns out not to be so stable as we might think. Why at any second hydrogen at ground state is just itching to drop to a much lower state and release lots of energy in the process. Mills calls the lower than ground state hydrogen hydrinos. Mark calls it collapsed hydrogen orbits. You can call it nonsense. But Mark does have a first class video game graphics developer in Australia working really hard on it.

    Mark assures all those doubters out there that they will be eating crow just as soon as his shipments of unobtanium arrive. Now obtanium is pretty expensive stuff, so if a few of you angels out there could just see to fronting Mark another few million dollars, he’ll tell some absolutely wonderful stories about how he can get people working on this stuff on a 24/7 basis. Why by 20 never he might even have some results.

  14. Penny Gruber reflects a self-certain arrogance that has a long history in the world of innovation. Not only airplanes, but lightning rods, vaccination, railroads and computers were all met with opposition that in retrospect appears absurd.

    Revolutionary energy technologies, such as Low Energy Nuclear Reactions (Cold Fusion) do not fit long accepted paradigms. And they threaten to disrupt powerful people who have vested interests to protect. It is instructive for those who take people like Penny seriously to review websites such as http://www.LENR-CANR.org

    There can be found an up-to-date snapshot of the hard to accept new science that has emerged from a tabletop demonstration of a nuclear reaction that threatened to topple the careers of a galaxy of hot fusion scientists who have spent billions of taxpayer dollars with no product and zero contribution to energy production.

    Probing the fringes of science is an inherently risky enterprise.

    In a world hurting for a strong economy the nice surprise is that nothing less is likely to provide practical paths to power production that need no fossil fuels.

    Mistakes and an excess of optimism come with the territory. So do remarkable discoveries and persistent people. As new technologies reach the market such attacks will inevitably reflect badly on their originators.

    Until that occurs, they are to be expected.

  15. Gee Mark, what part of your colorful history of fantastic claims without evidence have I gotten wrong? I’ll be happy to produce the quotes from you I relied upon for my comments. You have to my count have claimed at least half a dozen devices you have claimed as working energy sources that require no fuel as we know it.

    Do you dispute claiming a car that ran nearly 5000 miles powered by “ambient heat”? How about claiming a golf cart that ran for 120 miles? How about the outboard motor you said ran for a week? Do you contend you can produce any of those devices for inspection and that when produced they would hold up to competent third party tests of the claims you have made for them? How about the son of MEG transformer from Graham you are trying to patent but the PTO consistently rejects? Do you dispute that you cannot produce any of your claimed “fuel less” or “over unity”, “vacuum energy”, “quantum dynamo” generator devices such that any would pass a competent third party test against your claims?

  16. To repeat, until radically new technologies appear in the market, such comments come with the territory.

    To your surprise, and that of many less vocal skeptics, several will become commercial products in the not-too-distant future.

  17. Mark, I take that as your acknowledgement that you can’t produce squat for evidence that supports any of your many fantastical energy device claims. In some 25 years of selling dreams for gullible investor cash you never have.

    For those foolish enough to put money into your fanciful pitches for cash results will forever be: “expected”, “here soon”, “on the horizon”, “around the corner”, “appear to be within reach”. They will always require just a few more million in angel dollars.

    Isn’t it amazing how your little company with not so much as a single peer reviewed paper on energy technology to show for 25 years of “work”, makes claims to: not one, not two, but at least four different technologies all of which require major rewrites to modern physics? Isn’t it odd how all those big corporations you say have signed NDAs and seen whatever it is you have to show decline to give you the cash you seek?

  18. Cold fusion has had hundreds of papers in refereed journals and countless demonstrations of new science, yet is still widely disbelieved and poorly supported.

    Our Ultraconductors have been the subject of several papers in refereed journals and almost 1,000 samples were independently made and tested for the USAF, yet few believe a room temperature superconductor exists.

    The need for new energy alternatives will pull revolutionary technologies into the market in the near future, not only ours, but a few others as well.

    Until that occurs, we will continue to anticipate skepticism, much of it very understandable.

  19. Are you hoping to distract from the subject of your 25 year plus history of fantastical and completely false energy claims? Despite years and years claiming working revolutionary energy devices you cannot produce any proof. Complete self-destruction of your credibility is your problem alone.

  20. Ultraconductors are polymer equivalents of a room temperature superconductor. Once in production, they will constitute a well proven contribution to energy technology.

    Our power production systems, which have exceeded breakeven on several occasions, are well ahead, in our opinion, of hot fusion, which while grounded in conventional science, has rarely if ever done so, and has been a financial sink hole for decades.

    The proof will emerge in independent laboratory confirmation, as was true of the Ultraconductors, and then in products.

    Until that occurs, self-certain individuals such as yourself will continue to feel they are performing a public service. As time will demonstrate, they are only confirming their own ignorance. The self-destruction of credibility will emerge, to your utter surprise, to be your own problem.

  21. Despite many claims dating back to 2005 that you would within days or weeks submit one or more of the many energy devices you have claimed are overunity to third party tests, you never have. That failure to deliver on your claims is yours alone. The responsibility for your zero credibility is yours alone.

    It’s your actions that have spurred SEC complaints from disgruntled investors. Your history is what causes Google’s autocomplete to come up with “Mark Goldes fraud” as the first completion to “Mark Goldes”. It is your history that got scientists on Long Island to object to Chava’s proposals to buy Tesla’s old property from Agfa-Gevart. It is your history that got your account booted and comments purged from EnergyBlogs.com. It is your record that even has Sterling Allan warning readers against your “perpetual year”.

    I don’t make the laws of nature. I haven’t and don’t make your nonsense claims to violating them. And I don’t prevent you from submitting your nonsense devices to third party test, which you acknowledge, they could never pass.

  22. To your utter astonishment, you will discover that you have engaged in what is clearly one of your favorite exercises, Jumping to Conclusions.

    Performance rather than argument is needed. As time goes by, that will speak for itself. It will carry far more weight than words.

    Meanwhile, we continue to move toward the markets.

  23. Mark, is there a rebuttal to fact there? The fact is your lack of performance against your fantastical energy claims is now so extreme as to be legend.

  24. There are far too many to warrant response. Actions will speak loudly enough.

    The abuse hurled at Pons & Fleishmann was truly legendary. The cold fusion story is an excellent example of a large number of scientists ridiculing new science and Jumping to Conclusions. The recent American Chemical Society meeting in San Francisco, which began to honor their remarkable work (it first surfaced in 1989) should be an object lesson for the variety of arrogance you display.

Comments are closed.