Renault and the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) are collaborating to create a compact, bidirectional charger for electric vehicles. This charger, known as vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology, allows electric vehicles to not only charge their batteries but also supply energy back to the domestic power grid. This is particularly useful during periods of high renewable energy generation and low energy consumption.

The V2G technology takes advantage of the fact that electric vehicles are typically parked for extended periods of time and allows their battery to serve as a storage source for the power grid. This can improve the overall stability and efficiency of the grid and provide additional energy independence for households.

Renault has announced that this technology may be integrated into its electric vehicle ranges within the next decade. The charger is being developed in partnership with the CEA and will be integrated directly into the vehicle, making it small and convenient for consumers to use. This technology is already being implemented by other car manufacturers such as Hyundai, Kia, and Ford.

30% Less Energy Loss

Renault is working on a new internal 22 kW three-phase charger that aims to reduce charging time and energy loss during charging by 30%. The technology utilizes semi-conductors like Gallium Nitride (GaN) and Silicon Carbide (SiC) which are part of the “Large Gap” class and help to reduce heating during the conversion process.

Currently, without these types of semi-conductors, energy loss globally amounts to around 20% for domestic terminals. This not only increases the charging time but also inflates the electric vehicle’s share on the domestic energy bill.

Renault is currently one of the companies that has a high energy loss percentage. However, it is expected that this technology will take about ten years to be implemented in Renault’s vehicle range, therefore the 4L and the electric R5 presented at the last Paris Motor Show will not have this bidirectional compact charger.