IEEE Network - March / April 2017 - page 8

IEEE Network • March/April 2017
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D
riven by the growing demand for reducing greenhouse
gas emissions in the transportation sector, the past
decade has witnessed an explosive growth in develop-
ment and deployment of electric vehicles (EVs). Despite
the environmental benefits, the growing penetration of EVs
has imposed great challenges to both power grids and com-
munication networks, raising a new research area of “Vehi-
cle-to-Grid (V2G) Networks.” From the perspective of the
power-sector, V2G networks necessitate a careful manage-
ment of charging/discharging services for a large popula-
tion of EVs, with the objectives of guaranteeing grid stability,
improving energy utilization, and reaping potential arbitrage
value. In addition, as indispensable bridges for managing the
large number of EVs connected to the power grid and their
associated bi-directional energy-flows, new sophisticated
designs for communication infrastructures and protocols will
play a crucial role. The objective here is to realize an effi-
cient and effective information-flow, in addition to the ener-
gy-flow, which enables real-time monitoring, signaling and
information-dissemination in V2G networks, regardless of
the location, time, and the physical conditions/types of EVs.
Such designs require the integration of emerging advances in
information, computing, and communications technologies.
Therefore, V2G networks involve the multidisciplinary study
of smart grids, communication networks, and transportation
networks, and they will lead to a wide range of interesting
studies of practical importance and theoretical impact. This
special issue is dedicated to exploring the state of the art in
research and development on V2G networks. We received
17 submissions for this special issue, of which five have been
accepted. Each paper went through a rigorous peer review
process and was followed by another round of review after
revision. A summary of the accepted papers is provided as
follows.
The first two articles focus on advanced architectures for
V2G communications and computing. The first article, “Foud:
Integrating Fog and Cloud for 5G-Enabled V2G Networks,”
proposes a novel fog-based and cloud-based hybrid com-
puting model, which is enabled by future 5G mobile net-
works, to provide flexible and timely on-demand response
services for V2G systems. The article presents a variety of
potential V2G network services that can be provided by
the proposed hybrid computing model, and discusses open
issues, challenges, and solutions. The second article, “SDN
Based Framework for the PEV Integrated Smart Grid,” intro-
duces an innovative method to integrate the SDN into smart
grid to enhance system operation efficiency. The article first
discusses the challenges due to the increase of heteroge-
neous connected devices in the system. Then, a two-tier SDN
based framework that normalizes the connected devices is
presented to mitigate the manual effort required for the con-
figuration and maintenance of connected devices.
The third and fourth articles focus on optimal energy man-
agement for V2G systems. Electric vehicles with batteries are
able to facilitate smart grid to alleviate peaks and valleys of
energy consumption. However, this requires careful manage-
ment of the interplay between smart grid and EVs for proper
energy scheduling and management. The third article, “Dis-
tributed Energy Management for Vehicle-to-Grid Networks,”
proposes a novel energy management architecture for V2G
networks integrated with an EV aggregator with the objective
of maintaining the balance between energy suppliers (the
grid side) and consumers (the EV side). Based on this archi-
tecture for energy management, the paper proposes an inte-
grated control and communications approach that takes into
account the distributed features and EVs’ preference.
Optimization plays an indispensable role in achieving
proper management of V2G systems, particularly when one
considers the uncertainties brought about by intermittent
renewable generation and uncoordinated charging behav-
iors of EVs. The fourth article, “Robust Energy Scheduling
in Vehicle-to-Grid Networks,” aims to exploit the integration
of robust optimization with energy scheduling in vehicle-to-
grid (V2G) networks. The article first introduces V2G robust
energy scheduling problems and reviews the state-of-the art.
Then, for each category of V2G applications, the article illus-
trates the corresponding robust problem formulations, robust
solution concepts, and design approaches based on the char-
acteristics of problem structures.
The last article, “Cyber Insurance for Plug-In Electric
Vehicle (PEV) Charging in Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) Systems,”
focuses on cyber security in V2G networks, and introduces a
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