Hypervolt - Smart Local Energy Systems

This project aimed to better align electric vehicle (EV) charging with the needs of the electricity system, to enable market-wide adoption of EVs without adding significant integration costs on the grid.

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Summary: impacts and findings

This project showed how, by using a local smart grid, EV charge points could be rapidly rolled out even in grid-constrained areas whilst limiting infrastructure investment costs. 

Project aims and approach

The rapid rise in electric vehicles presents a significant economic risk in terms of grid integration costs, as EV charger deployment today has tended to grow rapidly and directed by user preference, with little consideration of impacts on local grids.

It has been estimated that when 40-70% of households have EVs, over 30% of medium and low voltage electricity networks will require upgrading or replacement – costing billions per year. The challenge is to enable market-wide adoption of EVs without these costs.

Combining home charging with variable electricity pricing to encourage off-peak charging helps manage demand, but smart tariffs such as these are based on national price signals and long-view regional grid infrastructure costs, without accounting for real-time local grid conditions.

Car charger company Hypervolt has developed a smart charging platform that allows users to opt in to support their local electricity grid. The enhanced charge point solution better aligns EV charging with the requirements of the electricity system, and better accounts for local system requirements within a national context. Using algorithms and demand prediction, the platform automatically schedules charging within and across neighbourhoods, maximising charging for drivers whilst minimising impacts on local grids.

In this project, the prototype was further developed and trialled in the field, including validating new technology features, testing end user acceptance, and gaining information for the commercialisation business model.




May 2020 to September 2022

Achievements and barriers

Through the field trial which was part of this project Hypervolt has deployed the technology to the first customers, proving the business model.

The company is working towards integrating the technology with an electricity distribution service operator, and launching a commercial offering.


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