Intelligent Energy Management – Future energy systems using smart grids and solar electricity
More and more solar panels are being installed on rooftops across the country and battery storage is emerging to a greater degree. In order to be able to use the energy produced locally, there is a need for management control systems. This means a need for control systems to use the energy locally, in local energy grids, i.e. control systems that can optimize the flow of energy within and between building properties. These control systems are referred to as Intelligent Energy Management (IEM). In this project, the current status of intelligent control systems and the future outlook for the market have been studied.
Intelligent Energy Management is the first area to be part of the Swedish Energy Agency’s platform – “A Challenge from Sweden”. The platform is used primarily to promote procurement in innovation. The Energy Agency and SISP launched the venture in 2015 with an innovation contest that resulted in four winners. Over the past two years, Sustainable Innovation has overseen the verification and validation of the four solutions in real environments.
“The evaluations showed that the solutions have features that can increase customers’ own use of solar power produced locally and assist peak-shaving to reduce costs of electricity purchased from the grid”, says Jan Kristoffersson, Project Manager at Sustainable Innovation.
The project has also shown that a lot of hands-on help has been required by customers, the installers they have hired and the IEM suppliers who get the solutions to work together with local equipment. This is largely due to the fact that the solutions are not fully commercial, and that suppliers have limited resources. Sustainable Innovation has also analysed the future for IEM solutions.
“The pace of development will increase as profitability of solar systems improves. Also, battery storage prices must fall. The same applies when interpreting or changing network concession rules as it becomes easier to transport electricity between buildings within, for example, a residential area”, says Thomas Sundén, CEO and project manager at Sustainable Innovation.
Further, the “The Purchasers Group for Local Energy” has been created with representatives from some 50 organizations, ranging from construction companies, municipalities to property developers. Their brief is to continue developing, sharing and disseminating knowledge and, through their procurement, accelerate the development of smart local energy solutions.
Four winners from across the world
CERTH, Greece. This team has developed AGILE, a self-learning energy system that adapts and makes better and better smart decisions about the buildings energy usage real-time, while unconditionally meeting end-user needs.
Amzur Technologies, USA. This winning team has developed a smart energy meter that predicts energy usage and how much solar power is generated. The energy meter helps the consumer to decide when to use battery power and when to buy electricity from the grid.
KIC InnoEnergy, Sweden. The team behind Local System Operator (LSO) takes a step towards smarter energy usage through an innovative business model based on local energy production and consumption. The solution contributes to creating smart energy communities comprising consumers and buildings, which together create a more sustainable energy usage.
Ferroamp Elektronik, Sweden. EnergyHub is a scalable solution providing greater energy management efficiency, less energy waste, easier installation and maintenance for consumers. Just as the smart phone is a communication platform, EnergyHub is a platform for the storage of renewable energy.