NREL is partnering with the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) in California on a new Advanced Transit Bus Vehicle Grid Integration (VGI) Project to develop and demonstrate VGI strategies and analytics to inform state-wide opportunities for transit agencies. The California Energy Commission is funding the $2 million project, which will span four years and includes a variety of partners.
VTA plans to add electric buses to its fleet along with an innovative bus charging system that aims to reduce charging costs, minimize the impact of bus charging on the grid, and integrate increased renewables, such as wind and solar, into the electricity mix. Based on an analysis of in-use operations data gathered via logging devices installed on the electric buses and comparable conventional buses, NREL will evaluate the performance of the electric buses and help VTA optimize their use. NREL will also contribute to a best-practices guide covering the project configuration, economic and energy outcomes, challenges and approaches, and policy considerations for electric bus deployment.