The MeRegioMobile research project has the goal of integrating electrical vehicles as mobile energy storage units in the intelligent power grid (smart grid) of tomorrow.
Opel will use MeRegioMobil to study new intelligent charging technologies that could be applied to models in the future.
The electric Opel Meriva features electronic controls which permit high power electrical refueling using both a 230-volt household current as well as 400 volt three-phase AC. The system is designed so that it can fit into a smart grid and the battery can recharge whenever electricity from renewable sources such as wind or solar energy is available and economical.
Conversely, the demonstration will explore the capability of the car to feed power back into the grid via the bi-directional charging system (vehicle-to-grid, V2G) when the car is not in use and the driver permits it. This demonstration of two-way charging technology will test the practicality of distributed energy storage in car batteries for home usage.
The electric Meriva has a 60kW / 82hp electric motor with torque ouput of 215 Nm. Thanks to the battery’s total energy of 16 kilowatt hours; a range of 64 km (40 miles) and a top speed of 130 km/h (81 mph)
Under the leadership of the energy group EnBW, other members of the MeRegioMobile research project include: Opel, Daimler, Bosch, SAP, Stadtwerke Karlsruhe, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
KIT will use the first electric Meriva. Two more will soon enter service at Stadtwerke Karlsruhe and EnBW. KIT and the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research have built a “Smart Home” on the south campus of Karlsruhe University. The home’s 60-square meter building area is equipped with the usual appliances including refrigerator, oven, dishwasher and washing machine and gets its energy from a photovoltaic cell as well as a micro combined heat and power plant. A charging station connects the Meriva as a storage unit to this local energy grid.
Depending on how the residents want to use the Meriva, they can distribute the energy easily between home and vehicle by computer. This ensures that the electric Meriva always has enough energy to meet transportation needs and enables some buffering of green power from the photovoltaic equipment.
GM also is testing electric Chevrolet Cruzes in Seoul, South Korea.[wzslider height=”400″ lightbox=”true”]