7 advantages of real-time monitoring

by | Feb 8, 2024 | About

Onsite meters can make EV sites smart by collecting data from assets like EV charging stations to show how loads are using electricity. Some meters can capture usage in near real-time (taking measurements in sub-second intervals) enabling a variety of benefits, especially when that data is combined with grid and weather information and recorded for historical analysis.

Taking it a step further, this intelligence can be shared with an energy management system (EMS) that can communicate with site assets via meters to control and optimize power usage to ensure reliability, drive down operational costs and increase profits.

Here’s a look at some of the advantages real-time monitoring can offer.

1. Manage EV loads
When you understand real-time power demand across your EV charging stations, you can distribute the charging load evenly across those units and infrastructure for consistent operation. Effective utilization of charging stations helps reduce congestion and delays for a better customer experience while lowering demand charges during peak periods.

2. Participate in grid programs
When you add energy storage to your EV charging site, you can generate additional revenue by participating in grid programs. Program participants are compensated for their ability to respond quickly and accurately to grid events. Knowing how your site is using electricity in sub-second intervals allows you to recognize any extra available power you can bid into the market to generate additional revenue while ensuring you have enough to maintain reliable operations.

3. Avoid breaker shutdowns
Sometimes EV chargers need more electricity than the grid can provide. Real-time data helps inform when additional site power is needed to direct the battery energy storage system (BESS) to discharge power and prevent breaker trips that can otherwise shut down your site and business.

4. Optimize available power use
Every kilowatt needs to count when you’re working with a capped amount of utility electricity. Seeing how much grid power is available at any given time allows you to make decisions on how to use it best onsite so that nothing is wasted and extra power can be sold to increase profits.

5. Forecast peak loads
The longer you collect site data, the more intelligence you can draw from it. Measuring real-time power usage against historic site data can help you predict and prepare for future load needs and plan accordingly. Having data from all site assets including EV chargers, renewable assets, batteries and more, combined with solar forecasts and weather patterns can further enhance your insight for a comprehensive understanding of traffic patterns and future demand that can better mitigate peak loads and inform capacity planning decisions.

6. Mitigate demand spikes
Real-time site power usage data can be compared to how much energy is in your BESS to mitigate demand spikes that can result in extra utility demand charges. Electricity consumption patterns combined with utility pricing mechanisms like time-of-use rates can allow you to charge your battery before and draw from it during a peak demand period to avoid demand charges and increase the profit margin of each charging session.

7. Make the most of your renewable energy
Having a real-time view of your renewable power generation along with storage capacity and site loads can allow you to charge your BESS or distribute renewable electricity where electricity is needed on site. Making the most of your cheap renewable energy can increase your resiliency while lowering electricity costs.

Sparkion can communicate with every asset on your site to understand EV charging load and available power to optimize electricity delivery.

Sparkion is the only solution that can connect to all site assets including EV chargers, BESS, renewable energy systems and more, while taking into account grid, solar forecasting/production and weather data, and capturing energy usage measurements in sub-second intervals. Our ability to facilitate seamless and continuous communication between site assets and the grid for multiple use cases—performed automatically and simultaneously—results in the most value and peace of mind for site owners.

You can learn more about how Sparkion maximizes the advantages of real-time data here.