Los Angeles Air Force Base has replaced its entire general-purpose vehicle fleet with plug-in vehicles. The 42-vehicle fleet includes 13 Nissan LEAFs, five Ford pick-up trucks with EVAOS PHEV kits, 9 VIA Motors VTRUX vans, four Electric Vehicle International medium-duty trucks and one Phoenix Motorcars 12-passenger bus.
Most are equipped with vehicle-to-grid (V2G) capability, allowing them to direct power both to and from the electrical grid when they’re not being driven. 13 V2G-capable CHAdeMO-compliant fast-charging stations have been installed at the base, delivered and commissioned by Princeton Power Systems based on its UL-Certified bi-directional multi-port converter; the GTIB-30.
The V2G technology enables the vehicles to provide more than 700 kilowatts of power to the grid, and enhances the power grid’s reliability and security by balancing demand against supply without having to use reserves or standby generators.
“Everything we do to fly, fight and win requires energy, whether it’s aviation fuel for our aircraft or power to run the bases that support them,” said Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James. “This vehicle-to-grid pilot is a great example of how Airmen are driving the Air Force forward and finding new and innovative ways to make every dollar count.”
California energy providers and regulators worked closely with the Air Force on safety and performance testing as well as technical and regulatory issues. “We absolutely couldn’t have done this without our federal, state and private partners,” said Assistant Secretary of the Air Force Miranda Ballentine. “The shared investment and commitment by our partners illustrates that innovations such as this have value not only to the Air Force and Department of Defense, but to the nation as a whole.”
The Air Force plans to expand the V2G demonstration to Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, and Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey. The service is also looking into using used EV batteries as a form of on-base energy storage.
Photo courtesy of EVAOS
“The forward thinking of the Air Force promises to be an important signal to the market to move this technology into the mainstream,” said William Kempton, Director of the University of Delaware’s Center for Carbon-free Power Integration. “By requesting V2G-capable trucks and cars from several vehicle manufacturers, placed in bases in several states, the Air Force has helped to stimulate demand from both automotive suppliers and the electric industry in these states. We can hope that the Air Force program announced today, together with the recent successful early demonstrations – by the Univeristy of Delaware with Honda, BMW, NRG Energy, PJM, and others – will move us from demonstration to early commercial-scale products.”
Source: US Air Force
Top Photo: Tech. Sgt. Sarah Corrice, Air Force Space Command