Page 22 - European Energy Innovation - autumn 2017 publication
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22  Autumn 2017 European Energy Innovation


Flexibility management with Flex4Grid

The consumption of electricity is increasing with                 security and privacy provisioning, and flexibility aggregation
            the adoption of electric cars. At the same time, the  and management. The Flexibility Operator Interface tools
            production-side is also experiencing big changes in   provides DSOs and other flexibility operators with means to
            Europe, as we are moving towards distributed and      access and manage the flexibilities of their customers. The
renewable energy sources. In this evolution the so-called         system provides DSOs with the following incentive models
energy prosumers, i.e. private customers that consume and         for flexibility management: Critical Peak Pricing, Peak Time
produce electricity, become key players in the energy value       Rebate, and Demand Bidding.
chain. However, this shift towards greener energy comes
at a price. The volatile energy demand and generation by          The Flex4Grid system is currently being evaluated in three
prosumers challenges the stability of the distribution grid,      large-scale pilots deployed at three distribution networks
because the Distribution System Operators (DSO) have              in Celje, Bonn and Bocholt. The test users are classified
limited means for controlling the flexibility assets possessed    in two groups: a group with smart plugs for controlling
by prosumers.                                                     energy consumption and a group without smart plugs.
                                                                  Moreover, in Celje existing smart meters infrastructure
Flex4Grid is an EU H2020 funded research project that             (AMI) is used. In Germany this was already planned at the
develops and evaluates novel solutions for managing               start of the Flex4Grid-project in the beginning of 2015, but
prosumer flexibility within the distribution grid. Prosumer       the smart metering implementation is delayed because of
flexibility management is investigated both at operational        uncertainties in the regulatory framework.
and business level with the aim to improve power grid
management and expand the smart grid market for new               The main benefits of Flex4Grid is that it enables DSOs to
stakeholders.                                                     cope with increasing amount of distributed local energy
                                                                  sources and volatile energy consumption. Moreover,
The main outcome of the project is the Flex4Grid system           Flex4Grid supports new market opportunities for third
that enables prosumer and flexibility operators to better         parties via cloud-based services, going beyond smart
utilize the distributed flexibilities for balancing energy        meters, and bringing end-users and other potential
production and consumption within the distribution grid.          stakeholders into the value creation process. l
The system comprises: Flexibility Operator Interface,
Prosumer Cloud Services, and Prosumer Flexibility
Management Kit. The Prosumer Flexibility kit consists of
smart plugs, a home gateway and a flexibility management
app (available for iOS and Android). The kit enables
users to monitor and control their appliances in real-time,
monitor their daily household consumption and production,
receive flexibility management requests from the DSO,
and automate the flexibility management processes within
their home. The Prosumer Cloud Services provide the
main business logic of the Flex4Grid system. They include
services for data management, aggregation and analytics,

                                                                  Contact details:
                                                                  Markus Taumberger
                                                                  Tel: +358 50 465 2474

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