Vattenfall tests flexible EV charging in Amsterdam


The Netherlands – Vattenfall is taking part in a new study in Amsterdam looking at flexible charging speeds for electric cars. The goal is to figure out how to best utilize the grids so that more charging stations can be connected.

Cities’ power grids are being put under additional strain as the number of electric vehicles grows. To test a new concept of smart charging, Vattenfall is working with a university, a grid operator, and other parties in Amsterdam.

A total of 126 charging points in Amsterdam will be used for the flexible charging speed tests until the summer of 2022. The city’s power grid is already under a lot of strain due to an increasing number of residents driving electric vehicles.

It’s possible that in the test, the charging speed will vary depending on the grid’s capacity and the number of cars being charged at any given time. The charging stations’ electricity consumption is monitored by the system software. As the number of vehicles charging at the same time increases, the charging speed decreases.

The e-car driver will not be impeded by the project’s flexible charging speed, which is an important principle. A smart rotation system ensures that cars take turns charging when there is a high demand for charging and a low power capacity on the grid.

Connected cars can be charged at full speed when more capacity is available, such as during the day when solar panels provide energy or at night when other consumption is low. To see how flexible the charging session would have been had it not been done by Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, researchers will look at how users felt both during and after the project.

As a follow-up to the previous Flexpower 1 and 2 pilots, Flexpower 3 reduces charging station power, regardless of how many cars are charging at the time.