New paper: Unlocking energy flexibility of municipal wastewater aeration

A new paper from CITIES / DTU Compute & Krüger A/S – download for free the next few weeks!

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306261920314161


A novel economic optimal control strategy suggests that the power consumption in wastewater treatment can be flexible since the water is treated in large tanks with long retention times where specialized aeration equipment is repeatedly switched on and off.

By controlling these switching times with respect to nutrient concentrations, electricity consumption can be predicted and shifted in time and hence provide short-term demand-side flexibility.

The proposed principle is used to reduce the operating costs of a wastewater treatment plant by enabling the flexibility to distribute the aeration load to periods with less expensive power prices.

Highlights:

  • Significant cost savings for wastewater treatment by shifting power consumption
  • Favourable to exploit instantaneous price differences in multiple power markets
  • Optimal energy consumption of wastewater aeration using switching times

#Smartenergyapplication
#Energyflexibility
#Energycontrol
#Wastewatertreatment
#Optimization
#Balancingmarket
#Pricebasedcontrol

Authors: Niclas Brok and Henrik Madsen from DTU Compute & Thomas Munk-Nielsen and Peter A. Stentoft from Krüger A/S.

New CITIES-related project looks for a solution to reduce CO2 from data centres and server rooms

Although CITIES ends by the end of 2020 after seven years of research, CITIES’ research, findings and thoughts continue through several other projects based on research in CITIES or inspired of CITIES.  A brand new one is Cool-Data; a Grand Solution project supported by Innovation Fund Denmark with DKK 13 million.

Researchers at DTU Compute, DTU Management and DTU Civil Engineering will work with industrial companies to develop a new cooling and storage system for data centres and server rooms, which will be managed through artificial intelligence and reduce energy consumption and thus CO2 emissions.

Dominik Franjo Dominkovic, a postdoc at DTU Compute, is the project manager of Cool-Data. In CITIES he has been working with the technology and methodologies, latest together with one of CITIES partners, EnergyCool, and the electricity and heating company GEV in a demo case in Grindsted in Jutland. See more below

In ‘Cool-Data’ Dominik, EnergyCool and GEV continue the work with the two other DTU departments, and PURIX, Naviair, and Center Denmark. Learn more at the DTU website

Digitalisering i fjernvarmen bidrager til 2030-mål

ENGLISH version: District heating digitalization contributes to 2030 targets https://www.dtu.dk/english/news/nyhed?id=5c3a7c1a-867b-4ea0-b185-4be5dd65e371

Det sparer penge og CO2, når fjernvarmesektoren styrer temperaturen med data og lokale vejrudsigter i stedet for tegninger af ledningsnettet og mavefornemmelsen. Det viser forskningsprojekter, som CITIES er involveret i. Læs artiklen i DTU-magasinet DYNAMO

1, 7 mio. husstande i Danmark (ca. 64 pct.) bliver opvarmet med fjernvarme, der løber gennem 60.000 kilometer fjernvarmenet. Rejsen fra fjernvarmeværket til radiatorerne tager typisk flere timer, og derfor skal varmebehovet kunne forudsiges.

Man skal ikke skrue mere op for varmeproduktionen end nødvendigt, for det koster penge og er energispild, ligesom temperaturtabet i rørene er større ved højere temperaturer.

Samtidig skal vandet være tilstrækkelig varmt på de såkaldt kritiske punkter i udkanten af ledningsnettet. Så det er en videnskab at styre fjernvarmeproduktionen optimalt.

På DTU Compute arbejder CITIES centerleder professor Henrik Madsen og hans kolleger med datadrevet energi- og temperaturoptimering. Flere forskningsprojekter viser, at digitalisering forbedrer prognosen for varmebehovet markant og derigennem letter vejen til Danmarks 2030-klimamål.

NREL – CITIES Support: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report

The research in CITIES finally comes to an end after seven years of research. Now one of our partners ‘NREL’ points out in a report their support to CITIES with references to four scientific papers and the establishment of Center Denmark.

NREL – National Renewable Energy Laboratory National Renewable Energy Laboratory – operated by Alliance for Sustainable Energy for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Energy System Integration
Modeling, simulation and analysis of integrated energy system and evaluate the use of the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF).

The ESIF is the first US research facility that can conduct integrated megawatt-scale research, development, and demonstration of the components and strategies needed to safely and seamlessly integrate clean energy technologies into energy systems infrastructure and utility operations at the speed and scale required to meet national goals.

In order to achieve the ambitious goal of a fully renewable Danish energy system, an overhaul of the operation, monitoring and planning of the entire energy system is necessary.

By moving from the traditional view of the power, heating, cooling, water and other systems as completely separate, centralized and mostly radial, to recognizing the significant opportunities for efficiency and emission reduction brought about by allowing these systems to fully integrate and interact with one another.

Integration of previously distinct energy systems allows for flexibility throughout the system, so that society’s needs for energy can be met while considering the fluctuating nature of many renewable energy resources.

Integrated Information and Communications Technology (ICT) powered systems offer the possibility of intermediate conversion and storage of energy in forms including power [sub-daily], heat (including the district heating network) [daily] and gas [seasonal], providing an essential service to balance the variations in wind and other forms of renewable energy production and ensure the security of energy supply. The high density and diversity of energy use and networks within a city environment, coupled with the expressed desire to achieve sustainability within cities maims them an ideal framework for this research activity.

Publication:
“Energy System Integration: Defining and Describing the Value Proposition”, M. O’Malley, B. Kroposki, B. Hannegan, H. Madsen, M. Andersson, W. D’haeseleer, M. McGranaghan, C. Dent, G. Strbac, S. Baskaran, M. Rinker, NREL Technical Report NREL/TP-5D00-66616, June 2016, https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy16osti/66616.pdf

Demand response
Additional results in the project focused on examining demand response (DR) as a way to increase flexibility in the operation of energy systems. DR proponents widely laud its prospective benefits, which include enabling higher penetrations of variable renewable generation at lower cost than alternative storage technologies, and improving economic efficiency.

In practice, DR from the commercial and residential sectors is largely an emerging, not a mature, resource, and its actual costs and benefits need to be studied to determine promising combinations of physical DR resource, enabling controls and communications, power system characteristics, regulatory environments, market structures, and business models.

The work during this project focused on the enablement of such analysis from the production cost modeling perspective. In particular, a bottom-up methodology for modeling load-shifting DR in production cost models was developed.

The resulting model is sufficiently detailed to reflect the physical characteristics and constraints of the underlying flexible load, and includes the possibility of capturing diurnal and seasonal variations in the resource.

Publication:
“On the Inclusion of Energy- Shifting Demand Response in Production Cost Models: Methodology and a Case Study”, N. O’Connell, E. Hale, I. Doebber, J. Jorgenson, NREL Technical Report, NREL/TP-6A20-64465, July 2015, https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy15osti/64465.pdf

Transactive Energy
The project also examined the concept of “Transactive Energy” (TE) and conducted significant work simulating transactive control in distribution systems. NREL, University of Colorado, South Dakota State and DTU performed their simulation using the Integrated Energy Systems Model (IESM) co-simulation platform.

The team implemented network-aware TE controls in the IESM co-simulation framework that manages distribution feeder voltages based on real-time optimal power flow. This is one part of a multi-timescale TE control approach that NREL is developing to reduce costs for both balancing power supply and demand and managing distribution feeder voltages.

This multi-timescale TE approach uses a price signal based on two components: an energy price based on wholesale prices and bids by participating DERs that adjusts on a 5-15 min market cycle, plus an incentive signal overlay for fast grid services, updated every 1-10s. For the TE Challenge, NREL simulated only the calculation of the incentive signals for voltage regulation services and used the time-of-use (TOU) price as the energy price.

More extensive analysis using a longer test period is required to determine appropriate levels of compensation for PV curtailment and reactive power support that will ensure fair compensation to houses that provide voltage regulation services.

Publication:
“NIST Transactive Energy Modeling and Simulation Challenge Phase II Final Report” D. Holmberg, M. Burns, S. Bushby, A. Gopstein. T. McDermott, Y. Tang, Q. Huang, A. Pratt, M. Ruth, F. Ding, Y. Bichpuriya, N. Rajagopal, M. Ilic, R. Jaddivada, H. Neema, NIST Special Publication 1900-603, https://nvlpubs.nist.gov/nistpubs/SpecialPublications/NIST.SP.1900-603.pdf

Integrated energy planning with variable renewable energy
The research also examined the integration of a very large share of variable renewable energy sources into the energy system.

To do this, an integrated energy planning approach was used, including ice storage in the cooling sector, a smart charging option in the transport sector, and an excess capacity of reverse osmosis technology that was utilized in order to provide flexibility to the energy system. A unit commitment and economic dispatch tool (PLEXOS) was used, and the model was run with both 5 min and 1 h time resolutions.

The case study was carried out for a typical Caribbean island nation, based on data derived from measured data from Aruba. The results showed that 78.1% of the final electricity demand in 2020 was met by variable renewable energy sources, having 1.0% of curtailed energy in the energy system.

The total economic cost of the modelled energy system was similar to the current energy system, dominated by fossil fuel imports. The results are relevant to many populated islands and island nations.

Publication:
“Integrated Energy Planning with a High Share of Variable Renewable Energy Sources for a Caribbean Island”, D. Dominkovic, G. Stark, B. Hodge, and A, Pederson, Energies 2018, 11(9), 2193, https://www.mdpi.com/1996-1073/11/9/2193

Center Denmark
Finally, NREL points out the support for the establishment and design of Center Denmark, the new Danish national digitalization hub for data-intelligent and integrated energy systems.  

NREL mentioned Center Denmark has been heavily influenced by the research at NREL and their research facility;  Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF). See above.

Download the report
The report ‘NREL CITIES Support: Cooperative Research and Development Final Report‘ is available at no cost from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

GREEN DIGITALIZATION 2020 – CITIES FINAL CONFERENCE and joint conference with DyCiPs and FED

The invitation is on its way. Save the dates!

Due to the COVID-19 situation:

Monday the 9th of November is CITIES final conference at DTU, Lyngby. The conference will be physical with streaming functionality in Zoom, so the IAB members and others can join online.

Tuesday the 10th of November will be an International Day – a partner conference with CITIES, the DiCyPs project (AAU), and the FED.  All three projects will be represented. The day has been changed from DTU to EWII, Kokbjerg 30, 6000 Kolding, Denmark. The meeting will be physical with streaming functionality in Zoom.

We reserve the right to act upon COVID-19 participation restrictions.

If you want to show up physical at DTU or EWII and need to book tickets and/or hotel please note that the meeting could be changed to a virtual meeting at short notice. We recommend that attendees from abroad stay home and join us virtually.

DTU and SDU move together with Center Denmark in Denmark’s Energy Silicon Valley

Center Denmark, which is a national meeting point for green research, has moved to new premises and has new cohabitants. Not long ago, the center’s employees moved together with the cluster organization Energy Cluster Denmark, and now both SDU and DTU join the green research community, which is physically located in Port House in Fredericia.

Learn more in the press release (Danish):

http://smart-cities-centre.org/wp-content/uploads/DTU-og-SDU-flytter-sammen-med-Center-Denmark_pressemeddelelse.pdf

CITIES’ related projects

Although CITIES ends by the end of 2020 after seven years of research, CITIES’ research, findings and thoughts continue through other projects based on research in CITIES or inspired by CITIES. This applies the following projects.

Center Denmark – digital hub for smart energy systems


CITIES’ work with cloud platforms has been a kind of preparatory work for the establishment of Center Denmark in 2018, a new digital hub for smart energy systems.

Center Denmark will develop the best-in-class nationwide data platform for energy related data, that combined with forefront artificial intelligence identifies flexibilities on the demand side across the energy systems. Development of decision tools with real-time capabilities will enable their partners to develop and test new innovative business models and commercial services targeting smart grid features for industrial sector and private households.

The hub will – as an incubator environment – connect several Danish living labs in a data lake for scaling and establish new scalable micro-grid test and demonstration facilities.

The data lake contains a variety of energy-related data that are mainly collected from the living labs in the project, but also from other sources such as BBR (The Danish Buildings and Homes Register) and DMI (Danish Meteorological Institute).

Center Denmark will make the data platform a foundation for an international framework for research, representative and scalable tests and demonstrations as well as education.

Center Denmark has a close connection to all four technical universities in Denmark and a number of key players for a smart green transition.

Center Denmark is located in Kolding in the immediate vicinity of key national players in the energy field, such as Energinet, Ørsted, EWII, TREFOR and Dansk Fjernvarme. This location will help to ensure that Center Denmark becomes the hub of the new Energy Silicon Valley in the Triangle area between Vejle, Fredericia and Kolding. Center Denmark has 42 partners. The center is funded by Innovation Fund Denmark.

In 2020 The European Commission has decided to certify Center Denmark as a “Digital Innovation Hub”.

EU defines Digital Innovation Hubs as one-stop-shops that help companies to become more competitive with regard to their business/production processes, products or services using digital technologies.

Web: www.centerdenmark.com

FED – Flexible Energy Denmark


FED is a Danish digitization project aimed at turning Danish power consumption flexible to enable utilization of excess power from wind turbines and solar cells. FED attempts to balance energy consumption with the production of sustainable green energy.

By balancing the energy system FED provides cost savings through decreased need for new energy investments. By balancing FED provides a reduction of CO2 emissions due to full utilization of the sustainable green energy available.

FED utilizes the latest digital technologies for reducing climate impact.

The project brings together Denmark’s foremost researchers, organizations, supply companies, software companies and a number of living labs that provide data for the project. The data is sent to the digital hub for smart energy systems Center Denmark’s data lake.

A living lab is a geographical area that is experiencing a challenge that the FED project might investigate. FED’s living labs gather data on building structures, constructional systems (CTS and others) and operational systems. Living labs send data from various sensors and monitoring systems into the data lake at Center Denmark. Some living labs have been equipped with extra sensor systems and actuators for control. All energy data will be made anonymous to the companies so they cannot identify who have provided the data.

FED has 24 partners. The project is funded by Innovation Fund Denmark.

https://www.flexibleenergydenmark.com/


Uni-lab.dk

Uni-lab.dk is a gathering point for living labs and test labs working with sustainable technologies. Uni-lab.dk is built upon Center Denmark, a national hub for the digitization of the Danish energy systems and closely related to FED, Flexible Energy Denmark, a Danish digitization project with several living labs.

Climate change calls for a strong, joint action from research, industries and from the citizens. Uni-lab.dk wants to bring together all living labs and test labs in Denmark in order to enhance their cooperation among each other and with Danish industry.

Uni-lab.dk can help universities in Denmark find a suitable lab where they can develop their next sustainable solutions related to their particular research field. Uni-lab.dk can also help the Danish companies find the right partners for the development, test and demonstration of their next-generation products.

The ambition to develop scalable solutions requires tests in representative settings. Living Labs are real-life test environments where new technologies, products and services can be tested in representative contexts, as in normal residential areas and industrial areas etc.

Uni-Lab.dk provides access to a wide range of test labs and Living Labs in Denmark. Uni-lab.dk interacts with the international UNILAB consortium, international partners, and with strategic international platforms and communities, e.g. with initiatives from the International Energy Agency, IEA.

Web: https://www.uni-lab.dk/en/

HEATman / HEAT 4.0 – Digitally supported Smart District Heating

The objective of HEAT 4.0 is to develop an integrated flexible product platform, called HEATman, that enables District Heating (DH) companies to meet demands from customers and society in a cost-efficient way – these aim to improve environmental gains and increase the share of renewable energy sources, all of which are supported by an intelligent digitalization of the DH sector, and consequently enable the wide deployment in domestic market and the export to international market.

HEAT 4.0 transfers the state-of-the-art knowledge from the Strategic Research Centres 4DH, promoting low energy concepts, and CITIES, promoting smart cities and smart energy grid concepts. The existing results from them and other related projects are made into the products and enriched by additional applied research in DTU and AU. The aim hereof is to digitizing the DH sector through data intelligence, artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies.

HEAT 4.0 combines a wide range of existing technical partner-solutions into a comprehensive and adaptable product platform – a cloud solution. HEATman is an integration platform that allows DH companies to adjust products from different providers to their own need. A major achievement is the ability to oversee the entire system and value chain.

Heat 4.0 is funded by Innovation Fund Denmark.

https://www.niras.dk/nyheder/naeste-generation-fjernvarme/


SCA – Smart Cities Accelerator


The Danish / Swedish EU-supported project Smart Cities Accelerator ended February 28, 2020. Smart Cities Accelerator was based on CITIES research and findings and has tested the methodologies for energy efficiency improvements and energy renovations, digitization potential in the district heating network, energy communities, and legislation etc. The project used Open Innovation Calls as a tool to get in contact with small startups with great ideas and solutions for complicated energy problems like power peak shavings.

In the period 2016-2020 four universities (DTU, Copenhagen University, Lund University, Malmö University), five municipalities (Copenhagen, Høje-Taastrup, Malmö, Lund, and Båstad) together with three energy companies (Høje Taastrup Fjernvarme & Kraftringen and E.ON both Sweden) have worked cross-disciplinarily.

SCA was funded by Interreg Öresund-Kattegat-Skagerrak

https://smartcitiesaccelerator.eu/


IDASC – Intelligent data use in district heating in smart cities

The IDASC project aims to collect and disseminate experiences about opportunities surrounding the self-learning systems in district heating. As part of the project, IDASC will test different models for using more real-time data in district heating, meaning senior executives, decision-makers and politicians involved in district heating can be given the best possible conditions for assessing its potential. This includes technical advantages and economic savings, as well as its CO2 reduction potential.

The self-learning district heating system can optimize temperature and flow control, enable peak load reduction, improve link between sustainable energy sources and district heating supply, create significant reduction in costs and CO2 emissions, and reduce maintenance costs, as the system is continuously and automatically adjusted.

https://www.gate21.dk/intelligent-data-anvendelse-i-smart-cities-idasc/

syn.ikia


syn.ikia aims at achieving sustainable plus energy neighbourhoods with more than 100% energy savings, 90% renewable energy generation triggered, 100% GHG emission reduction, and 10% life cycle costs reduction, compared to nZEB levels. This will be achieved while ensuring high quality indoor environment and well-being.

Four real-life plus-energy demonstration cases tailored to the four different climatic zones and development projects of Europe will be developed and analysed within the syn.ikia project. The syn.ikia demo cases will demonstrate the functionality of the plus-energy neighbourhood concept for the rest of Europe.

https://synikia.eu/

eBalancePlus


The aim of the project is to increase the flexibility of energy networks, to test new business models and to support important stakeholders with tailor-made end-user interfaces. It will test a variety of solutions at four real demonstration sites located in Spain, Italy, France and Denmark. Additional laboratory testing will address safety issues.

Another special feature of ebalanceplus is its social and market orientation.

From the outset, the project will take into account people’s needs and concerns in terms of innovation and smart grids. This increases the chances of the market adopting technology.

The project work plan covers a 4-year period and involves 15 partners from 10 countries. All project activities and results are divided into 9 work packages, dealing with research, analysis, evaluation and exploitation to achieve future replicability.

https://www.ebalanceplus.eu/

TOP-UP


TOP-UP studies how TOP-down initiated heat networks can play a central role in integrated regional energy systems, and investigates how these top-down actions can empower bottom-UP participation among local actors and sectors, as to achieve the regions ambitious energy targets.

TOP-UP incorporates expertise in modelling, automation, social sciences and practice to optimize regional energy systems. It focuses on the integration of heat and electricity networks, and identifies and fosters optimal levels of local actor/sector participation. TOP-UP aims to satisfy actors/sectors needs and preferences, and to optimize regional energy system performance.

TOP-UP develops tailored solutions for the Groningen (NL) and Copenhagen (DK) energy systems – which prioritize changes to their heat networks due to unique regional challenges – and studies how these solutions can be scaled and customized to other regions, making best use of local renewables and reducing the dependency on fossil fuels.

https://www.top-up.info/

FLEXCoop


FLEXCoop aims at introducing a complete automated Demand Response framework and tool suite for residential electricity consumers.

The end-to-end interoperable solution will enable consumer flexibility to be valorised in front of a range of possible users in order to fulfil different services to the grid.

This framework will enable energy cooperatives to explore demand response business models and take the role of aggregators. The pilot participants are members of two energy cooperatives located in the Netherlands and in Spain.

FLEXCoop supports the democratisation of the energy system by enabling electricity consumers in households to actively support the energy transition and benefit from it through demand response.

http://www.flexcoop.eu/

Lots of inspiration in reports: Innovation for sustainable and smart cities

Lots of inspiration in reports: Innovation for sustainable and smart cities

The Danish / Swedish EU-supported project Smart Cities Accelerator has recently released all reports, technical papers etc. on a brand new homepage. Smart Cities Accelerator was based on CITIES research and findings and has tested the methodologies.

Please take a look at the many reports about energy efficiency improvements and energy renovations, digitization potential in the district heating network, energy communities, and legislation etc. And learn how to use Open Innovation Calls as a tool to get in contact with small startups with great ideas and solutions for complicated energy problems like power peak shavings.

In the period 2016-2020 four universities (DTU, Copenhagen University, Lund University, Malmö University), five municipalities (Copenhagen, Høje-Taastrup, Malmö, Lund, and Båstad) together with three energy companies (Høje Taastrup Fjernvarme & Kraftringen and E.ON both Sweden) have worked cross-disciplinarily.

The reports are in Danish, Swedish and English.

Nominated for the EU REGIOSTARS Awards

SCA ended in February 2020. The project was supported by the EU’s regional programme – Interreg Øresund-Kattegat-Skagerrak. The programme has been very enthusiastic about SCA. For two years in a row, Anne Marie Damgaard as project manager has been invited by SCA’s Interreg contact to apply for the EU REGIOSTARS Award. This year, she has followed the call and now the project is online and anyone can vote for it.

The REGIOSTARS Awards are an annual awards ceremony for EU-funded projects that show the way to good regional development and innovation. The projects should inspire other regions and project managers. There are five categories – Interreg has placed SCA in the category: Sustainable growth – Circular economy for a green Europe.

A jury will select five projects from each category in July. On July 9, they unveil the finalists, and at the same time, the European Commission’s Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy create a real voting module on web to find the REGIOSTARS 2020 public choice award.

Please, give your likes here and read about the other projects: https://regiostarsawards.eu/

The photo is from February 4, 2020, when SCA held a final conference in BLOX in Copenhagen. Photo: Mikal Schlosser
The photo is from February 4, 2020, when SCA held a final conference in BLOX in Copenhagen. Photo: Mikal Schlosser
Digitalisering skaber store gevinster i Svebølle-Viskinge Fjernvarmeselskab

Digitalisering skaber store gevinster i Svebølle-Viskinge Fjernvarmeselskab

Sænkning af fremløbstemperaturen med 10 grader, markant reducering af varmetab samt fastholdelse af varmeprisen.

I magasinet Dansk Fjernvarme kan du læse mere om gevinsterne ved datadreven styring og visualisering i Svebølle-Viskinge Fjernvarmeselskab (m bl.a. Svend Müller).

Her samarbejder DTU – Technical University of Denmark (m Henrik Madsen, Per Sieverts Nielsen samt Dorthe Skovgaard Lund m.fl.) med ENFOR A/S (m bl.a. Mikkel Westenholz) om udviklingen af metoderne gennem IDASC (hjemsted på Gate 21 m Karolina Huss), CITIES Innovation Center samt vores tidligere Smart Cities Accelerator. Og ABB (partner i FED-projektet) er med i aftestningen.

Læs også artiklen her: https://ipaper.ipapercms.dk/DanskFjernvarme/Fjernvarmen2015/2020/fjernvarmen-32020-ny/?page=34

Svend Müller, bestyrelsesformand i Svebølle-Viskinge Fjernvarmeselskab (tv) og Mikkel Westenholz, CEO i ENFOR. Foto: Hanne Kokkegård
Svend Müller, bestyrelsesformand i Svebølle-Viskinge Fjernvarmeselskab (tv) og Mikkel Westenholz, CEO i ENFOR. Foto: Hanne Kokkegård

Energy communities: Good or? CITIES is looking behind the hype

During a new demo project at CITIES – Centre for IT-Intelligent Energy Systems – Danish Energy and DTU Compute will make a simple analysis of the impact of energy communities on the national grid.

Energy Communities is a new player on the energy market that can help incorporate larger amounts of sustained energy in the energy system.

Usually, energy communities include prosumers (consumers of energy that produce energy at certain times) that can have or have not the possibility to store energy, e.g. via batteries or thermal energy storage. Although these concepts can sound attractive to different stakeholders, it is not yet clear what the impact of ‘energy communities’ on different distribution systems is. 

I a new demo project Danish Energy (a non-commercial lobby organisation for Danish energy companies) and DTU Compute will look at the impact of energy communities on three different grid layouts – urban, suburban and rural areas of Denmark – to estimate the consequences of different set-ups of energy communities on distribution grids, as well as to find the energy community set-ups that require further research.

– Of course, the idea of creating sustainability with local energy production sounds very good. But we are looking behind the hype. We are not focusing narrowly on the small energy community but look at the horizon to understand the whole role of these energy communities to see the impact on the whole national grid, Dominik Franjo Dominkovic, Postdoc at DTU Compute, says.

– We hope that the results of this project can serve as a solid foundation for designing future flexibility services and tariffs for energy communities, taking into account the different structures (shapes) of energy communities, Jan Rasmussen, Head of Department at Danish Energy, says.

Different kinds of energy communities
The energy communities are not very good defined. And we only have seen very few of them so far.

It could be only two players exchanging their energy in real-time. It could be an energy community far from the owners who just sell the energy to the marked or is used in the houses there. It could be in the city or far out in the countryside.

Some of them could store energy, e.g. via batteries or thermal energy storage for later use by themselves when the energy production is low or for selling at the energy market. Sometimes they will need to get energy from the grid to secure enough energy for the consumers. You could also think of energy communities where the energy is not as green as the energy from the grid.

Therefore Danish Energy and DTU Compute will make a simple analysis of the impact of energy communities on three different grid layouts with a small, a medium and a large setup.

Some of the questions that will be tackled are how an energy community should be billed and how the distribution grid tariffs should be constructed. The demo project looks at both the economy and CO2-reduction.

– The idea is to see in which setup these communities benefit the distribution grid and in which setup they do not support the distribution grid at all or perhaps even having a critical impact for the grid. At the end we would like to see how changes in the energy prices will affect the situation, Dominik Franjo Dominkovic says.

Danish Energy is experiencing an increasing interest in energy communities covering housing association and parts of larger cities.

– It is of great importance, those energy communities are rewarded if supporting the grid, and are integrated into the electricity system in a non-discriminated way, together with all other electricity users. As energy communities can have many ‘shapes’, it is needed to create a foundation for designing future flexibility services and tariffs. We believe that our engagement in the CITIES project can provide this, Jan Rasmussen says.

Learn more about the demo project

See also the YouTube-video from Smart Cities Accelerator, where we also researched energy communities.