The biggest culprit in bringing down a power grid that is based upon renewable energy sources, such as wind or sun, are surges. The very nature of renewable energy means that the flow of power is not always consistent, there is time when the sun is shinning brighter or the wind is blowing harder, and a surplus of energy is being produced. There is also points to where the demand is greater than what can be produced from natural sources
Electric vehicles (EV), beside an alternative green mode of transportation, may have another function that they can serve to the general public.According to a pilot project, being conducted a the University of Delaware, the cars could be used as a form of electric batteries, storing and delivering energy on-demand to deal with surges.
The program has retrofitted Mini Coopers, and any other cars that charge by plugging into electric sockets, and uses them to store energy. During a surplus, the electrical grid would be configured to send energy to be stored in the car's battery system, and during peak periods or heavy use, it would drain the energy back to help with the additional load.
Since, the EV's spend more than half their time parked, and plugged into a charging station, the plan is very feasible. Also, the owner would be compensated for the time that the car is drawing energy, encouraging them to participate if the system is set-up properly.
This vehicle-to-grid technology is being promoted as a viable addition to assisting with meeting renewable power quotas. In fact, California, is seriously considering the technology because it is not only the most aggressive state in meeting renewable power goals, it also plan to have 1.5 million zero emission vehicles on the road in the next ten years, making it the perfect place for this type of technology.