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Smart garages for electric vehicles

The Rocky Mountain Institute recently hosted a summit meeting to identify the barriers and breakthroughs needed to electrify the U.S. auto fleet. The gathering instigated several key initiatives to bring closer to full realization the "Smart Garage" -- a paradigm that allows cars to plug in to homes and buildings, uniting our transport, building and grid energy systems.

The Smart Garage is not a physical garage, rather a metaphor for the place where buildings, the grid, and the vehicle come together. Cars can connect to the grid at the shopping center, in the parking lot of offices, curb-side down town, or in residential driveways.

In the first wave of convergence between buildings, vehicles, and the grids, cars will charge up in a "smart" way. This means the time of day they charge, how fast they charge, the location and more will be dictated by driver preferences (including electricity bill limits) balanced against utility and building needs. In the longer term, bi-directional charging (often called V2G) can use vehicle batteries as storage, opening up more benefits, though more more costly and technically challenging.

Read about what's going on here: http://move.rmi.org/innovation-workshop-category/smart-garage.html

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