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Guidance for Decarbonization and Sustainable Operation of Battery Systems in Electrified Delivery Fleets

Problem Statement: Electrification can decarbonize (or reduce carbon emissions from) vehicles if charging uses electricity from low- or zero-carbon sources. Decisions about where, when, and how electric vehicles (EVs) are charged will impact emissions, cost, and battery performance and lifetime. There is currently no single model that addresses all these variables and outcomes. Understanding the interactions between these decisions, and their impact on cost, lifetime, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is an important step in improving the sustainability of EV fleet operations.

Project Objective: The Center for Sustainable Systems (CSS) at the University of Michigan will develop specific guidance for fleet operators to balance GHG emission reductions with costs and battery degradation. To develop this guidance, we will review literature for operation of EV fleets, integrate that literature with our principles for responsible mobile battery management, then apply those principles to fleets of electric delivery vans and trucks within a comprehensive and consistent modeling framework.

Project Scope: This project will cover operation of the battery system in fleet vehicles, including charging time-of-day, charging rate, charging location, and grid marginal emissions. The focus of this work will be on fleets of electrified delivery vans and trucks. Fleet operation unrelated to the battery system (e.g., route optimization) is outside the scope of this project. The initial focus of the analysis will be on cost and GHG emissions, with the option to include other pollutants and their associated damages in the future. The impact of charging strategies on battery degradation and lifetime, and the emissions and costs associated with battery production will also be included. Guidance regarding when, where, and how to charge will be an output of the study.

Responsible Battery Coalition
Research Areas
Energy Systems
Mobility Systems