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CENTRAL LONDON CENTRE

CENTRAL LONDON CENTRE

Powering Operations of the Future

CENTRAL LONDON CENTRE

Powering Operations of the Future

Each night while the city of London sleeps, a fleet of UPS® package cars at the city’s Camden sorting and delivery hub is plugged in—and making history. Never before have more electric vehicles been charged simultaneously at a single UPS facility. This breakthrough is made possible due to a partnership with multiple technology and infrastructure stakeholders, providing a glimpse of the future beyond the traditional internal combustion engine.

In the past, UPS could charge a maximum of 65 electric package cars at its Camden facility due to the limits on electricity capacity for the facility and the cost of upgrading the external power grid. Now, a smart grid using a central server connects to each electric vehicle (EV) charge post, as well as the grid power supply and the on-site energy storage.

While all vehicles are plugged into charging ports at once, the system staggers charging throughout the night, allocating electricity among each of the vehicles and the building’s needs for lighting and sorting operation. By morning, all vehicles are fully charged. Eventually, UPS may be able to operate a fleet of 170 of these vehicles in London, all without adding new power capacity.

The effort, known as the Smart Electric Urban Logistics (SEUL) project, is a collaboration between UPS, U.K. Power Networks and Cross River Partnership, with funding secured from the U.K.’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles. It is a major win for the city of London, which faces significant air pollution challenges—and also represents the beginning of a transformation in sustainable urban delivery.

For example, we’re testing the potential for batteries once used in UPS vehicles to be given a second life and repurposed for on-site energy storage. Together with a smart grid, this technology could pave the way for a UPS EV infrastructure strategy that dynamically makes use of a conventional power upgrade, on-site storage, and local power generation, including solar and other alternative sources. It’s a promising step toward lowering the barriers to putting new EVs on the roads and addressing air quality challenges in the world’s major cities.

Employees
3 Project Partners: UPS, UK Power Networks, Cross River Partnership
electric van
65 Electric Vehicles Deployed, and Testing Smart-Grid Technology to Increase Capacity to 170 Vehicles

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