Electric vehicles have the potential to be used as virtual power plants to provide reliable back-up power. This generates additional profits for carsharing rental firms, who rent vehicles by the minute. We show this by developing a discrete event simulation platform based on real-time locational information (GPS) of 1,100 electric cars from Daimlers carsharing service Car2Go in San Diego, Amsterdam, and Stuttgart. We design trading prices (bids and asks) for participating in the respective operating reserve markets, markets for back-up power guaranteeing replacement when a power source fails, to sell the storage from idle electric vehicles. These trading prices are calibrated and tested with operating reserve market data. We investigate the influence of the charging infrastructure density, battery technology, and rental demand for vehicles on the payoff for the carsharing operator. We show that virtual power plants create sustainable revenue streams for electric vehicle carsharing companies without compromising their rental business.

, , , ,
ERIM Report Series Research in Management
ERIM report series research in management Erasmus Research Institute of Management
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Kahlen, M., Ketter, W., & Gupta, A. (2017). FleetPower: Creating Virtual Power Plants in Sustainable Smart Electricity Markets (No. ERS-2017-013-LIS). ERIM report series research in management Erasmus Research Institute of Management. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/102565