Using Rooftop Photovoltaic Generation to Cover Individual Electric Vehicle Demand – A Detailed Case Study
Henry Martin, René Buffat, Dominik Bucher, Jannik Hamper, and Martin Raubal
The introduction of battery electric vehicles (BEV) and the expansion of rooftop photovoltaic (PV) power generation are both progressing at a fast pace to decarbonize the transport and the energy sector in Switzerland. These parallel developments have an enormous synergy potential as the actual decarbonization impact of BEVs depends heavily on the carbon footprint of the power source and the PV expansion requires local storage as a buffer to reduce negative impacts on the distribution grid. We present an empirical analysis based on a detailed 10-month data set of the charging and mobility behavior of 78 BEV users in Switzerland. It is combined with a fine-grained digital surface model of Switzerland to extract the detailed roof geometry and the corresponding rooftop PV generation capacity of each of the BEV owner’s houses.
We test four different smart charging strategies with a varying degree of complexity and find that when charging uncontrolled (the strategy used during the study), BEV owners can only cover 15 % of their BEV’s demand using PV generated from the roofs of their own houses. A simple controlled charging approach greatly increases the average coverage to 56 % and up to 90 % or 99 % when using an optimized charging strategy without or with a home battery storage. All charging strategies ensure that the individual mobility behavior of the BEV owners is not affected.
We further show that using rooftop PV power generation for BEV charging has a large potential to further decrease the climate impact of BEVs and propose simple adjustments to consider in charging strategies that help to increase the owners’ PV consumption.
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 157, 111969, 2022-04-01.