THE CHALLENGE:
Drone, AR/VR, Machine Learning/AI and EV Charging

Project Greenlight’s open call process solicits innovative ideas that address complex challenges facing public and private enterprises (“members”). Whether your submission involves an emerging technology you are bringing to market, or a commercially available solution used in an adjacent industry, it must be unique, scalable, and aligned with FortisBC’s strategic priorities.

FortisBC is committed to identifying solutions that help improve utility maintenance and operations work and safety by leveraging technologies such as sensors, AR/VR, machine learning/AI, and autonomous vehicles/drones. We are also focused on reducing barriers for customers to install EV home charging, and improving charging accessibility in rural and remote communities. We are specifically interested in solutions that:

Utility infrastructure maintenance and inspections:
  • Vegetation management and asset condition assessments that use virtual and remote technologies, including drones/autonomous vehicles, AR/VR, and sensors.
Enhancing worker safety:
  • Make it safer to work alone and operate vehicles (i.e. fail-safes to prevent roll-aways or trailer detachments).
  • Collect data and provide analytics that identify trends and gaps across environmental health and safety information, potentially via wearable technology.
  • Use AR/VR technologies to deliver virtual training for gas and electric field workers.
Electric Vehicle (EV) charging:

FortisBC is a gas and electric utility. We currently operate public fast chargers along highway corridors and support home charging in regions where we provide electricity. We are interested in:

  • EV charging data analytics for load identification and disaggregation (for example, we want to use advanced metering data to reliably detect home charging).
  • Off-grid Level 2 and DC fast charging (for example, in remote but high-traffic areas such as rest stops and parks, there may be opportunities to improve service provision for British Columbians).
  • Networked home charging solutions that allow EV owners to easily charge off-peak or override off-peak charging if desired, and for FortisBC to verify when off-peak charging has occurred.

Desired Outcome

A successful solution will measurably enhance worker safety and/or reduce environmental impacts, as demonstrated in tests and pilot installations.

Where relevant, solutions will accurately track avoided events, to substantiate environmental and/or health and safety impact reductions.

Solutions should reduce operating and/or maintenance costs and, if relevant, identify potential issues prior to failure more than 90% of the time.

Opportunity

Engaging FortisBC could lead to one of the following outcomes:

  • A proponent piloting its solution
  • FortisBC issuing a call to seek market responses to the goods and services being offered
  • FortisBC pursuing the solution at scale
  • FortisBC not pursuing the proposal
  • Another pathway as mutually agreed

In some cases, FortisBC may be interested in pursuing co-development opportunities to advance research and development of technologies of particular interest. This would most likely occur under a pilot testing framework, but early-stage R&D partnerships—particularly those proposing AR/VR, machine learning, and networked sensor technologies —may also be available.

Note: all inquiries and proposals must be submitted through the Project Greenlight website. If you have a question, check the FAQ for commonly asked questions; alternatively, you can submit your query using the Contact Us form. Please do not contact members directly.

Evaluation Criteria


 

Review Process

The Project Greenlight team (Vancouver Economic Commission and Foresight sector leads) undertakes a standardized review process across all challenges. Proponents should review the eligibility criteria for their specific challenges, as each has its own requirements. Proponents should also closely review the Application Handbook [PDF].

 

Additional Resources

  • For additional detail on FortisBC’s EV investments, visit www.fortisbc.com/ev
  • FortisBC is not likely to consider solutions that require substantial changes to operating or revenue policy, or that conflict with existing commercial agreements.