We are now experiencing a downturn in the Swedish economy, where household costs for food, electricity, fuel and interest have increased significantly. And it has not escaped anyone’s notice that Sweden and Europe are in an energy crisis that requires increased electricity production or smarter ways of managing electricity. As an example, using demand-driven smart systems and decentralized networks. This could be in the form of a network of electric cars connected to bi-directional chargers.
The government has presented a series of budget proposals to deal with the energy crisis in the near term and for the future, with, among other things, the energy efficiency of single-family homes, investment in nuclear power research and targeted support for electricity-intensive companies.
At Wallbox, we believe that bidirectional chargers for home use, complemented by sophisticated software that enables customers to have direct control over their energy consumption, are part of the solution to the energy crisis. Bidirectional charging can play a big role in transforming electric car batteries into versatile storage assets and decentralization of energy but is something that has not been widely discussed in Sweden.
The subsidy for buying an electric car was recently removed, but Swedes can still benefit from subsidies for the installation cost of storage solutions, such as batteries, for energy they themselves produce. Electric car batteries have a much larger capacity than the batteries for storing electricity at home, they are also mobile and have thus become an interesting alternative to storing energy for home use.
Bi-directional chargers will enable EV drivers to be in control of their entire power consumption, to charge their car when energy is cheaper, during times of the day when prices are lower and to run their house on the battery at times when energy prices are high, and on this way save money.
Building on this theme, the average household battery pack has an energy capacity of around 7-10 kWh. This is usually installed together with solar cells. A battery in an electric vehicle ranges from 50 to 80 kWh. With sophisticated hardware and software technology, like the Wallbox, you can use the battery you’ve already bought in your car to power your house..
Individuals who already have solar cells installed in their homes can charge their cars with solar energy. In the near future, Wallbox technology will enable users to charge their car for free with solar energy, and later charge this energy back into their home when energy prices are higher. This provides immediate and long-term cost savings for the consumer. The car is essentially a battery with wheels. Our vision is starting to look more real as we see hundreds of thousands of EV chargers around the world able to charge and discharge anywhere, anytime, using our technology.
Bidirectional charging is one of the tools that Sweden could use to immediately address the energy crisis. It will not be the only solution, but it is part of a set of tools that can be used. Looking beyond the immediate crisis this winter, bidirectional chargers will play an even greater role in a sustainable energy grid in Sweden and globally.
The technology is there, the consumer demand is there and the legislation must now follow suit. At Wallbox we have a charger to meet the needs of every single household and we look forward to the future. Sweden is a leading market in electrification, and what we can all achieve together here will be copied all over the world as the EV revolution continues to develop at an ever faster pace.
By Daniel Utges, product manager in the area of energy at Wallbox