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Schneider Electric EV charger targets energy bills, sustainability

© Shutterstock / LCVSchneider Electric.

Global energy management solutions giant Schneider Electric launches EV charging products that can help households monitor energy usage, and help reduce CO2 emissions. 

Schneider Electric’s EVlink Smart Home Charger connects to home energy management apps on smartphones, allowing consumers to monitor power consumption in real-time, helping manage rising energy bills.

Home-based EV charging is on the rise, and could become a significant portion of the power used by homes. Improved home power management can help reduce carbon emissions from households.

Solutions like this help boost demand side energy management for households, which can help lower total electricity demand, and help balance the load on energy grids, in particular as renewable energy sources come online.

Schneider’s EVlink Smart Home Charger connects to home energy management apps on smartphones. An increasingly green or renewable electricity mix is going to need significant storage, and one approach is widespread use of domestic EVs. Integration of digital power management in the home could accelerate that opportunity.

Managing the demand side of energy management is becoming a high priority as more renewable power generation is integrated into national grids. The intermittent nature of renewable sources of power means technologies like smart metering and efficient energy management are critical to managing the electricity load.

Together with multi-family or multi-unit buildings, household carbon emissions exceed those of some of the highest polluting industries, like transport or energy production. With spiking energy prices in 2022, and rising inflation, controlling the cost of energy for households becomes paramount.

Solution that drives energy efficiency, affordability and helps the environment

Schneider Electric (PAR:SU) claims its EVlink home smart charging system is the first on the market to integrate with home energy management systems, giving consumers direct control over scheduling EV charging. Through its Wiser app for smartphones, Schneider provides homeowners with the ability to control and manage their energy use.

The app also provides information on carbon consumption, allowing eco-conscious users to manage their energy use in the most environmentally friendly way.

Schneider is targeting the electric vehicle market with its EVlink charger for commercial and apartment buildings, leveraging its strength in providing energy efficiency and automation solutions to make buildings more sustainable.

Schneider has built its energy management offerings for buildings, one of its largest market segments by sales, around its EcoStruxure platform. The platform uses Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to connect multiple points in the operations of buildings, data centres, industries and infrastructure to improve energy efficiency.

EcoStruxure for eMobility is targeted at multi-dwelling buildings, a user-friendly charging experience with optimised power supply and accurate consumption metering per user for allocation of costs. It is an open, standards-compliant, and service-ready solution. 

Home-based EV charging on the rise

More people are charging their EVs at home, especially in countries like the UK, where multiple tariffs from energy companies offering lower charging options at night, for example, with lower value added tax compared to public charging stations. 

Yet, the rising cost of electricity, compounding the cost of living crisis, may slow the sale of EVs in the near term. Previously, lower fuel costs relative to petrol and diesel, and government credits provided incentives to consumers that may have been daunted by the higher upfront costs of EVs relative to internal combustion engine cars.

There is a greater reliance on home charging in countries with a high share of single-family homes, like Norway and the US, the IEA reports. Yet a doubling of EV sales globally in 2021 over the previous year increases the burden on public charging stations, which could drive higher demand for home charging options. 

Demand side energy management has multiple benefits

Smartphone energy management apps have multiple benefits for consumers and suppliers of electricity, which should drive up their use by households. In addition to lower energy costs and environmental benefits, these apps also foster innovation and the development of technologies that can be beneficial.

Integrating power from renewable sources requires energy providers to regulate demand, to balance the load on the electricity grid. Residential energy consumption accounts for about 40% of total electricity produced, which makes it a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.

A useful feature of Schneider’s Wiser app is the ability to activate a ‘cost effective’ mode, allowing users to decide on the cheapest tariffs, and the most efficient charging schedule. This also extends to consumers with defined energy limits, cutting off charging to keep costs under control.

The app’s intelligence also extends to the use of other electric appliances, helping coordinate the most efficient use of electricity. A ‘green mode’ also allows for the use of renewable energy, reducing reliance on expensive grid energy from conventional sources.

As many face a daunting winter this year, smart apps might help by placing cost saving benefits right in the palm of their hands. 

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