Smart Charging for Electric Ride-Hailing Vehicles using Renewables: A San Francisco Case Study

Stefania Mitova, Alejandro Henao, Rudy Kahsar, Carson Farmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Charging large fleets of electric ride-hailing vehicles (ERVs) is a complex matter that could serve different objectives: lower carbon dioxide emissions, lower monetary expenditures, or maximize solar photovoltaics (PV) energy consumption. Currently, it is unclear how each of those objectives could impact the business and performance of a ride-hailing fleet. In order to fill this gap, this article employs a dynamic transportation model: a smart charging simulation that combines agent-based, discrete-event, and system dynamic modelling by comparing the above-mentioned objectives in separate scenarios. The results show that each scenario successfully manages to shift between 34% and 87% of all load to hours of the day when the objectives of those scenarios are met. Therefore, in comparison to the baseline, smart charging can save between 5% and 26% of monthly emissions and between 4% and 57% of monthly expenditures. The solar PV scenario, however, results in the highest savings, while ensuring profitable economics via net metering in the short- as well as long term. Finally, the sensitivity analysis points to important trade-offs between several fleet performance metrics. The article concludes by giving business and policy recommendations for maximising the economic, energy and environmental efficiency of large ERV fleets.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)67-85
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Energy and Environmental Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2022

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5400-84027


  • electric vehicles
  • ride-hailing
  • smart charging
  • solar energy


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