SAN RAMON, CA - The ZigBee Alliance, a group of companies creating wireless solutions for use in energy management, is collaborating with the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) to develop the ZigBee Smart Energy standard. The aim is to develop technology that supports plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) and enables vehicle-to-grid (V2G) communication and power capabilities.  

ZigBee Smart Energy is a leading home area network and advanced metering infrastructure standard for the smart grid. The new collaboration recognizes the role SAE plays as the focal point for integrating automobile communication with emerging energy management requirements.

The two groups will use ZigBee Smart Energy to define how PEVs and the grid interact. The goals are to provide future PEV drivers with the real-time information needed to control their transportation energy use, manage their charging costs and receive utility incentives for participating in PEV programs. The groups want to give drivers the essential control functions necessary to safely manage the charging of PEVs while maintaining grid integrity.  

"Adding ZigBee Smart Energy to PEVs will give automakers and utilities a common language to manage the charging, storage and use of energy in PEVs," said Richard Scholer, chair of the SAE Hybrid Vehicle Communications Task Force Committee. "SAE's formidable task is to help coordinate the urgent efforts of many different companies, industries and disciplines. It realizes the faster standards appear, the sooner electric-powered vehicles can gain consumer acceptance as a new and reliable mode of transportation."

Work between the groups is already under way with completion targeted for this year when ZigBee Smart Energy version 2.0 is scheduled for completion. SAE joins ZigBee Smart Energy development efforts, which are led by some of the largest utilities, suppliers and technology companies in the world.