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California Grants Propel Cutting-Edge V2G Project for Electric School Buses

by Anna

A grant-funded endeavor in California is poised to revolutionize the landscape of electric school buses with the installation of bidirectional chargers supporting nearly two dozen all-electric vehicles. Spearheaded by Canadian automaker Lion Electric, in collaboration with charging providers BorgWarner and Fermata Energy, the project has received a significant boost with a $3 million grant from the California Energy Commission (CEC). This initiative aims to deploy vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology, enabling two-way charging for electric school buses, thereby enhancing efficiency and grid stability.

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The project will see the installation of 21 BorgWarner 125 kW bidirectional chargers, supported by Fermata Energy’s vehicle-to-X (V2X) software, facilitating optimized charging and discharging sessions. This innovative approach, applied to at least 20 LionD battery electric buses, promises to revolutionize the manufacturing landscape and bolster the UK’s aerospace capabilities. By shortening the forming cycle time by over 50% and reducing manufacturing costs by up to 25% compared to traditional methods, this hybrid technique is poised to strengthen the UK’s supply chain in high-value manufacturing of titanium parts.

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The collaboration between Lion Electric, BorgWarner, and Fermata Energy represents a significant milestone in advancing V2G technology in the transportation sector. With the installation of bidirectional charging stations at key locations, including the Los Angeles County Office of Education and Conejo Valley Unified School District, the project aims to replace diesel buses with LionD vehicles, featuring an impressive 83-person seating capacity and a 155-mile range on a single charge.

Fermata Energy’s AI-powered V2X software will play a pivotal role in managing charging/discharging sessions, leveraging dynamic data analysis to optimize energy utilization. Moreover, BorgWarner’s expertise in bidirectional charging hardware deployment underscores the project’s robust technological foundation. With previous successful deployments in British Columbia and ongoing integration efforts with Fermata Energy, BorgWarner is well-positioned to contribute to the project’s success.

California’s leadership in EV adoption sets the stage for this transformative initiative, aligning with the state’s ambitious clean energy targets. With an increasing focus on electrifying school bus fleets and expanding charging infrastructure, California is at the forefront of the electric mobility revolution. Supported by substantial funding from the CEC, initiatives like these pave the way for a sustainable future, where electric vehicles play a pivotal role in grid stability and renewable energy integration.

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