Testing of e-vehicle. JRC has upgraded its facilities to study the static and dynamic behaviours of evolving power grids integrating more renewables, electric vehicles, dispersed energy resources and storage.© EU, 2013
E-vehicles and smart grids: First EU-US Interoperability Centre inaugurated
The first of the twin centres designed to promote common standards in electric mobility and smart grids on both sides of the Atlantic was today inaugurated near Chicago. Converging standards and interoperability between smart grids and electric vehicles will allow for deeper penetration of renewable energies in the electricity systems, thus facilitating the way to a low-carbon economy. Technology harmonisation will drive product and service innovation in the two world's largest economies and could prove instrumental in establishing global standards for electric mobility.
The launch of the Interoperability Centre for electric vehicles and smart grids is the fruit of 18 months of dedicated work following the Letter of Intent (LoI) for closer co-operation, signed by the JRC, the European Commission's in-house science service, and the US Department of Energy (DOE) in 2011. The Interoperability Centre inaugurated today is hosted at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory near Chicago. The second Centre will be opened in the EU, at the JRC sites in Petten, The Netherlands and Ispra, Italy, in 2014.
The interaction between smart grids – intelligent electricity systems – and electric vehicles will ensure economically efficient, sustainable power systems with low losses and high security of supply and safety. Smart grids, as upgraded electricity networks, will provide a two-way digital communication between supplier and consumer which will predict and respond to the actions of all users connected to the grid.
Standardisation in this field will benefit the European energy landscape while converging transatlantic technical regulations could lead the way to global standards. The trade and investment agreement currently negotiated by the EU and the US – known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) – aims to remove tariffs and differences in technical regulations, standards and certifications which cost time and money to companies and consumers. In the context of the importance of this agreement for converging standards across the Atlantic, the work of the twin Interoperability Centres will play a scene-setting role for technology harmonisation in the two biggest world economies.
Video about the JRC's Vehicle Emissions Laboratory (VELA)
- JRC leaflet on electromobility
- JRC thematic report on Energy
- Press release: Electric vehicles and smart grids: First EU-US Interoperability Centre opens for business
- Co-operation between the JRC and the US
- DOE's Argonne National Laboratory
- More information on the JRC's research on standards and measurements