Electric Vehicles

Optimise Prime

Project Data

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Optimise Prime is the world’s biggest trial of commercial EVs. It seeks to understand and minimise the impact that the electrification of commercial vehicles will have on distribution networks. It is developing technical and commercial solutions to save customer costs (estimated to £207m savings by 2030) and enable the faster transition to electric for commercial fleets and private hire vehicle operators. The project is also vital if the UK wants to meet its carbon reduction targets. The accelerated adoption of commercial EVs will save 2.7m tonnes of CO2, equivalent to London’s entire bus fleet running for four years or a full Boeing 747-400 travelling around the world 1,484 times. The flexibility provided by the project will also free up enough capacity on the electricity network to supply a million homes..

Getting Connected: The future of EV charging infrastructure

What is the project about?

With businesses buying 58% of all new vehicles in the UK, it is expected that commercial vehicles will determine the speed of the transition to low carbon transport. Compared to vehicles used for domestic purposes, commercial EVs – i.e. vehicles used for business purposes, including the transport of passengers and goods – will have a much greater impact on the electricity network. Therefore, it is important that network operators, technology providers, fleet and transport companies work together to test and implement the best approaches to the EV rollout for commercial enterprises, while keeping costs low for network customers.

Find out more about Optimise Prime at the project’s website here: https://www.optimise-prime.com/

How we’re doing it

Led by global data technology solutions provider Hitachi Vantara and UK Power Networks, this three-year project will see up to 3,000 electric vehicles from Royal Mail, Centrica and Uber, supported by Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks, Hitachi Europe and Hitachi Capital Vehicle Solutions. It will be split into three trials, reflecting the three partner fleet use cases:

  • Trial 1: Home Charging (British Gas) – A field study of charging behaviour and flexibility with a return to home fleet.
  • Trial 2: Depot Charging (Royal Mail) – A field study of charging behaviour and flexibility with a depot-based fleet. Additionally, testing of profiled connections.
  • Trial 3: Mixed Charging (Uber) – A study based on analysis of journey data from electric PHVs.

What makes it innovative

Optimise Prime is innovative in the following respects:

  • It is the first project to specifically address the network challenges of commercial EVs;
  • It employs an advanced IoT platform and machine learning to manage and analyse a large volume of data from EVs and chargers to aid optimal decision making;
  • It will allow ‘self-service’ determination of load profiles by customers, optimising both site and network capacity;
  • It takes a holistic approach, looking at technology, behaviour, and business models to find solutions that work for all stakeholders.

What we’re learning

This industry-led Project will create a detailed understanding of the impact of commercial EVs and the opportunities for flexibility. This will allow licensees to accurately forecast and plan mitigations, including flexibility and profiled connections, minimising costs for the connected and connecting customer. Depot based tools and home charging strategies will allow fleet and PHV operators to electrify more quickly at a reasonable cost, without negatively impacting the distribution network.

Images & Videos

Getting Connected: The future of EV charging infrastructure

Do you want to connect public EV chargepoints to the electricity network? Or the infrastructure to charge a commercial fleet of EVs? Catch up on our webinar to find out more about the work that UK Power Networks and SP Energy Networks have been doing as part of their Optimise Prime and Charge projects to enable chargepoints to be connected to their networks more efficiently using innovative solutions such as: • Flexible connections • Flexibility services • EV charging demand modelling • Network capacity data and pricing availability.

Enabling the EV revolution: Driving the network

Join innovation experts from UK Power Networks and SP Energy Networks to find out more about the solutions pioneered as part of the Optimise Prime and Charge projects in enable to EV chargepoint connections. These projects have investigated innovative solutions to enable network operators to optimise EV infrastructure connections. These include: • Flexible connections • Flexibility services • EV charging demand modelling • Network capacity data and pricing availability. Find out more about how the solutions will allow network operators to connect a greater numbers of EV chargepoints (public destination, workplace, en-route and fleet) to the electricity distribution network, making efficient use of available capacity.

Changing Lanes Webinar: Facilitating Electric Transport - 23 April 2020

View our Changing Lanes Webinar on future of commercial and domestic electric vehicles. First hosted on 23 April 2020, the webinar shares industry-leading technical insights from flagship EV trials happening taking place across the UK. The webinar features: - UK Power Networks' Innovation lead Dr Sung Pil Oe, - UK Power Networks' Innovation Engineer Florentine Roy, - Hugo Seymour, Senior Manager at Hitachi Europe ...on Optimise Prime, the world's largest commercial electric vehicle trial in conjunction with household names Hitachi, British Gas, Royal Mail and Uber. You'll also hear from Geoff Murphy, Lead Engineer at SP Energy Networks on Charge, an £8.5m project to accelerate the connection of EV Charging Infrastructure through developing new transport planning, connection and charging solutions.

2019 Hitachi Transformation Awards Optimise Prime

For more information visit https://htchivantara.is/Awards19 To reach carbon-reduction targets and accelerate the transition to commercial electric vehicles (EVs) in the UK, the world’s largest commercial EV project was formed by Hitachi, Centrica, Royal Mail, UK Power Networks (UKPN), Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) and Uber. The Optimise Prime consortium aims to help businesses overcome the challenges with the electrification of commercial fleets, minimize the impact these vehicles will have on the electricity networks and help the UK plan and prepare for the mass adoption of electric vehicles. The Hitachi Transformation Awards go to organizations that have accelerated their digital transformation with support from Hitachi Group solutions. Let’s celebrate their innovation, insights and inspiration to lead with data. For more information visit https://www.hitachinext.com/en-us/

Optimise Prime

Centrica supports world's largest electric vehicle project - Optimise Prime

Centrica is proud to be supporting the world’s largest commercial electric vehicle project – kicking off in January 2019. For more information please visit: https://www.centrica.com/news/

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