Autorid and Zum Services plan on turning electric school bus batteries into 1GW virtual power plant.

by Jul 16, 2021

AutoGrid, an artificial intelligence-driven distributed energy software company, has partnered up with student transport provider, Zum Services with the intention of utilizing the electric school buses in US for Virtual Power Plants (VPPs). They will be using the batteries of 10,000 new electric school buses, which equivalate to 1 GW of electricity, as an aggregated resource that can support the supply and demand balance on the energy grid. The company has also previously partnered up with a wide range of stakeholders in the energy industry, from solar and storage providers like Sunrun, Fujitsu etc. to create various virtual power plant configurations which can perform frequency response and other grid services. Zum Services would be providing the vehicles. The reason for this partnership can be attributed to presidential administration proposing to invest US$25 billion in electrifying school buses in its major infrastructure bill, which is an opportunity for both the players. Also, the reason for using electric buses as a part of virtual power plant is also because of predictable and set timings, since most school buses have daily fixed schedules for which they are used, when taking the students to and from school. PTR believes that if there is proper realization for the plans of bus electrification, this plan would have a lot of potential, as it will enable the country to make full utilization of the available resources and no additional batteries would have to be installed. Link to the news: