22 September 2022

With more than 150 participants on web platforms, E.DSO, the European Distribution System Operators’ Association, has discussed, in collaboration with the RWTH Aachen University, on the question ‘Is Open Source the next big Thing in Electricity Distribution?’  

With Antonello Monti’s, Professor at the RWTH Aachen University, opening speech, the fundamental role of open source as fast enabler of innovative solutions bringing huge corporate saving in network expansion, accelerating the flexibility market and customer engagement was underlined.

Rolf Riemenschneider, Head of Sector IoT at the European Commission, stressed European actions on the digitalisation of the energy sector in which open standards and open source contribute to accelerate the green and digital transition. Open source also drives knowledge development to ensure grid security through flexibility in an increasing electrified energy system, as Bram Sieben, Directeur Corporate & Social Affairs at Alliander, and Board Member of E.DSO stated during his intervention. Moreover, Jean-Marc Moulin, T&D Vice President at GE DIGITAL, Grid Solutions, showed how open source provides the cornerstone to the interoperability by adhering to public standards, ensuring a secure environment for customers, and creating a level playing field for all energy stakeholders.

The panel discussion concluded that momentum for collaboration between energy users and industry, under the guidelines of EU frameworks, has come and that communication among all stakeholders to nurture interoperability is at its core. TSOs an DSOs are challenged to move away from committing to single solution vendors and should become system integrators themselves. To actively involve all stakeholders, the energy system should be based on open standards and clear domain models. Knowledge panelists under E.DSO Secretary General Roberto Zangrandi’s moderation were Lucian Balea, Open Source Program Director at RTE; Erik Wolfs, Architects Lead at ENTSO-E; Giuseppe Testa, Head of Commercial Services and Operation Technology Systems at Areti, and Laurent Schmitt, Head of Utilities & European Developments at dcbel, and President of Digital4Grids.

During the event, a short video showed ‘Open source in action’ with DSOs committed to supporting research and innovation activities in the energy sector by taking part in multiple European research projects. The Platone architecture is tested and validated in three demos in Germany, Greece, and Italy. The Italian DSO Areti implements a custom Advanced Distribution Management System, a platform that leverages current and future industrial IoT digital assets in the grid in Rome. Platone builds on the Linux Foundation Sogno project and on the collaboration with EU Universal. In his closing remarks, José Ferrari Careto, CEO of E-Redes; Vice-Chair of E.DSO; and Chair of the E.DSO ‘Technology and Knowledge Sharing’ Committee, stressed again how open source has become a reality already embraced by DSOs to ensure grid management in a secure, safe, and resilient way. System Operators, industry, vendors, and all other Stakeholders have shown their willingness and capacity and are fully embracing this great journey to find common scenarios for open-source larger adoption.

You can find the slides presented during the event here and the recording of the webinar here.

Flexibility can be an important tool for system operators to optimise the use of the grid while ensuring security of supply and accelerating the penetration of renewables in the electricity network. Improved coordination among energy stakeholders, including TSOs, DSOs, FSPs (BSPs/BRPs) and consumers, plays a fundamental role in achieving the uptake of market-based flexibility solutions as part of the energy transition.

For three years and a half, the Horizon 2020 funded CoordiNet and INTERRFACE projects have collaborated to bring together the experiences of their large-scale demonstrators across Europe. As the result of their extensive cooperation, the two projects have defined a set of tools necessary to overcome the challenges faced by flexibility market stakeholders, presented in this joint position paper on “Recommendations Towards Harmonized European Flexibility Markets”.

The position paper addressed the key topics of Roles and Responsibilities, Requirements for information sharing, Requirements of prequalification process, Requirements of the settlement process, Geographical scope and network representation, Consumer engagement, and Scalability and Replicability. Through the presented set of shared policy recommendations, the paper highlights three overarching learnings from the projects’ experience.

Firstly, it is of utmost importance to strive for coordination among energy system stakeholders, characterised by seamless information exchange and clear definitions of responsibilities, fostering efficiency of the overall energy system operation and enhanced benefits for all market players.

Secondly, there is a paramount need for harmonisation of definitions, processes, and best practices across the EU, with the end goal of simplifying the setup and operation of market-based flexibility solutions, supporting the design of interoperable and yet tailored systems, and altogether enabling their scaling up and replication.

Lastly, it is crucial to empower current and new potential market actors by providing them with the tools necessary to understand the opportunities offered by flexibility markets, strengthen their role within them, and overall increase their trust, by guaranteeing transparency as one of the fundamental principles in the design of future electricity markets.

To find out more, download here the full position paper.

Links:

CoordiNet website: here

CoordiNet LinkedIn: here

CoordiNet Twitter: here

The EU Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) has been mandated by the European Commission to draft and submit a non-binding framework guideline on demand response.

The draft framework guideline is setting out the main principles for the development of a network code on demand response. The new rules will aim at enabling market access for demand response, including load, storage and distributed generation (aggregated or not), as well at facilitating the market based procurement of services by distribution and transmission system operators.

E.DSO submitted today a response to ACER’s open consultation providing the necessary guidance for a sound finalisation of the framework guideline.

Please download the document to see our full response.

On 5 April 2022, the European Commission made a legislative proposal to update the F-Gas Regulation to align it with the European Green Deal, the European Climate Law and recent international obligations under the Montreal Protocol.

The power industry fully embraces the European Commission’s decarbonisation objectives and its ambition to cut F-gas emissions. The DSOs and generators that we represent are committed to adopting a sustainable approach to the development and operation of their assets and thus to using SF6-free electrical equipment for new installations. Consequently, we all support the phasing out of SF6-based technologies after a transition period that varies by voltage level.

Digital transformation is happening. The spread of advanced technologies such as remote sensors, data analytics and automation has opened a frontier for new innovative services and approaches on doing business. Distribution system operators (DSOs) have an opportunity to evaluate how they plan, build, operate and maintain their assets and how they serve their customers. For DSOs, digitalisation is mission-critical for the energy transition. Digital transformation, combined with electrification, is aiding the transition of the entire energy sector, from power plant management to new consumer services and smart grids.

This is why E.DSO members are at the forefront of all EU policy debates in the digital arena: tacking the data regime to cybersecurity and digital technologies and infrastructures, and contributing to the discussions on how to boost the uptake of data, key technologies like AI and Digital Twins, to ensure the security and resilience of the network.

The paper concentrates on the following issues:

Smart grid technologies such as machine learning (ML), artificial intelligence (AI), virtual or augmented reality (VR/AR), digital twin and blockchain are pivotal to overcoming technical challenges associated with smart grids. These technologies offer a real opportunity for DSOs to embrace technology and automate repetitive tasks such as inspection and maintenance activities, as well as outage prediction and restoration.

Smart grid technologies enable a more flexible and interactive functioning of the grid and provide real-time feedback by enabling intelligent monitoring, control, communication and self-healing technologies.

Data analytic modelling using both, criticality to indicate asset failure and a health index to receive information about the condition of asset points, maximises asset risk reduction and business results subject to certain constraints, like limited expenditure, regulatory obligations, and business plan.

To overcome technical barriers to smart grids, today’s “connection” standards must recognise the functioning of devices connected to the grid as both electronical infrastructure and intelligent node.

To guarantee high customer satisfaction with a high standard for service levels and customer engagement, the availability of data from all voltage levels (HV-MV-LV) is crucial.

Further research activities must focus on major challenges such as the handling of large volumes of data with high variability, the integration of renewable energies, the performance of storing and retrieving big smart grid data for AI applications in a robust manner as well as the explainability & limitations of AI algorithms.

Through the combination of cyber-physical systems, cloud computing, and intelligent industrial solutions, digital-twin technology lies at the basis of smart-grid deployment, renewable energy management, better integration, and efficient transmission.

14 July 2022

Our seventh episode discusses the dynamic but also challenging outlook at the rapid expansion of new technologies within DSOs. There is a growing demand for new technologies which requires sometimes far-reaching modernisation. Our discussants give us an outlook at how to maintaining climate change targets while modernising, the meaning of “smart grid” and how to modernise grids in the context of a rapidly increasing electricity consumption.

You can follow E.DSO Policy Podcast Series and listen to our monthly episodes on Spotify and ApplePodcasts!

You can always send feedback or ideas directly to the podcast team at Tzeni.varfi@edsoforsmartgrids.eu.

E.DSO, the Association of European Distribution System Operators, is pleased to invite you to join the Webinar ‘Is Open Source the next big Thing in Electricity Distribution?’, organised online on 22 September morning (10h00-12H15 CET) in collaboration with the RWTH Aachen University.

Open Source has been transforming many business sectors, and the percentage of open-source software behind our daily systems is growing at an unimaginable scale. When it comes to the energy sector, can we expect the Open Source approach to bring a disruptive effect on the grid operation?

The webinar will raise these critical questions, trying to provide a vision of the possible implications of Open Source in the future work of Distribution Grid Operators.

Discover the draft agenda here.

REGISTER HERE

The decarbonisation of European energy system is driving a radical change in the way in which distribution grids are managed, from both operational and planning perspectives. The traditional grid investment models – of driving investments to meet all customers’ needs without congestion – is transitioning to one in which distribution network investments and stable grid operation are balanced against active congestion management, with DSOs deploying active system operation through the use of distributed energy resources (DER) connected to the grid. In this new context,  the interface between the grid and distributed supply/demand end-users (“ the grid edge”) will become increasingly important to enhance the DSOs’ capacity to observe energy users and related impacts, grid monitoring to improve electrical flows forecast, long term and short-term planning so as near real-time operation.

If you want to know the real potential the grid edge represents for DSOs, read our paper.

Take a look at E.DSO’s video collection and discover how DSOs across Europe are promoting customer empowerment through different innovative ideas.

Fluvius Databoost

Exposing and boosting the customers’ data in an intuitive and easily accessible way is key! Fluvius, via its ‘Databoost’ portal, is showing the path to the future of data exposure, digitalisation and development of new services based on accurate and real detailed customer meter data. Fluvius enables customers to use their energy more economically, smarter and greener, which is needed for the energy transition. This project opens the door to a new generation of tailor-made energy services and customer empowerment.

More: Fluvius

i-DE, Smart Electricity Networks

i-DE believes in a fair energy transition that integrates all the customers. i-DE offers its knowledge and expertise to Local Energy Communities (LEC) based on the supply of individual users data or aggregated data to optimise their energy consumption. Relying on the supply of individual users’ data or aggregated data, i-DE enables LEC to monitor and optimise their energy consumption and energy fluxes based. These services facilitate energy efficiency decision-making processes by empowering customers on the daily basis.

More: i-DE

E-Connection: E-REDES Digital Customer Journey

The E-Connection project is a paramount example of how the adoption of digital can bring together different parts of a complex process and deliver an enhanced and effective customer service. Nowadays, instantaneous information is everywhere, and customers requiring a grid connection are not an exception. With this goal in mind, E-REDES came up with an integrated solution that allows to keep a permanent feedback loop to the customer, while offering a variety of channels where additional information can be acquired by someone who wants to quickly connect to the distribution grid, either to connect its renewable generating unit or the new home or business facility.

More: E-REDES

The Prioréno initiative

Prioréno is a large-scale and general interest data initiative aiming at a very practical objective: removing the obstacles that elected officials and local governments may encounter while renovating their public buildings. Indeed, many local elected officials only have a partial understanding of their building stock’s characteristics and sometimes lack the essential information they need to launch the renovation works.

More: Enedis

● A powerful consortium joins forces to extend the penetration of electric vehicle transport in Europe

● The team involves 30 European companies, research organisations and associations from 9 different countries, and is led by IREC (Spain)

● Massive penetration of electric vehicles requires innovative grid solutions based on charging flexibility

● Smart charging solutions will provide efficient exchange of energy with vehicles, buildings and the grid, allowing for the alleviation of grid constraints alongside fostering renewable penetration

Barcelona, 5 July 2022. Today, a large consortium formed by 30 European entities gathers in Barcelona to kick-start the FLOW project, aimed at promoting a concept of electric mobility suited for the final user, while providing benefits to the energy system across Europe. The initiative will test, validate and enhance the so-called Vehicle-to-X, where energy will be exchanged among vehicles, buildings and the grid. While the EU Parliament voted to ban new sales of fossil fueled cars by 2035, FLOW will give a solid basis to enhance the upcoming mass penetration of electric vehicle transportation.

According to the International Energy Agency, power demand for electric vehicles is predicted to account for up to 6.5% of European final electricity consumption by 2030, with almost 60 billion € per year in electricity sales. However, the implementation of electric mobility in urban and rural sectors faces several challenges, such as the accessibility to suitable charging infrastructure, or how current users are still used to combustion vehicles. The project will focus on solving the main obstacles faced by drivers during the charging and utilisation of electric vehicles and will provide solutions and alternatives for those challenges.

Cristina Corchero, coordinator of the consortium, explains that “The FLOW project represents a unique opportunity to better understand the potential of energy flexibility when we achieve a massive penetration of electric vehicles”. She highlights that “This will be possible thanks to the joined forces from key players from both the electrical and the mobility sectors”.

The solutions developed within FLOW will provide answers for the upcoming mass deployment of electric vehicles to all actors involved, ranging from power distribution system operators, charging point operators, mobility service providers, infrastructure manufacturers to final users. The main aim is to validate and quantify the benefits associated with electric vehicle charging flexibility, alleviating grid problems, in order to achieve energy decarbonisation while transitioning to a sustainable mobility model.

A total of 5 demonstration sites will be implemented to determine the impact on different energy systems in Czech Republic, Ireland, Italy, Denmark and Spain.

The project is led by the Catalonia Institute for Energy Research (IREC) and is formed by a multidisciplinary team, involving academic partners, small, medium and large enterprises from the energy and mobility sector and large European industry associations.

Distribution System Operators (DSOs) are in the driver’s seat of the e-mobility development as they connect the charging points to the grid. The DSOs will use electric vehicles (EVs) charging to make the grid smarter and to utilise all the flexibility and storage options across the distribution network. As a partner of the project, E.DSO will draw on FLOW learnings and results to manage the oncoming mass penetration of EVs, and push for the accelerated deployment of smart charging infrastructure.

Electric vehicles will be game changers when the full capabilities to exchange electricity with the grid are deployed. Testing energy flows and driving patterns of real users on real grids is key to reach this goal and the outcomes of this pioneering project will feed policies and draw best practices.

FLOW has the ultimate goal to scale up electric mobility as the key driver of European transport.

More about the FLOW project

FLOW is a 4-year long project framed in the 2Zero partnership (‘Towards zero emission road transport’). It is funded under the Horizon Europe framework programme, with a total budget of about 10M€. The consortium brings together prominent European actors working with electric mobility from a multisectoral collaborative approach. The team involves several companies engaged in the mobility transition. Starting with innovative small and medium enterprises, leaders in the field of charging infrastructure (Heliox), exploitation and innovation management (R2M Solution) and charge point operator and aggregator services (Spirii). The team also involves large enterprises with established market positions to include cutting-edge solutions in their portfolios. This group encompasses a global infrastructure and networks operator (Enel Grids), distribution system operators (Areti, e-distribución and e-distribuzione), a transmission system operator (Terna Spa), a power management company (Eaton), several charging infrastructure technology providers, charging point operators, mobility service providers, and smart charging service providers (Enel X Way, Endesa X Way), aggregators  (Enel X, Acea Energia), an information and communication technology company (Engineering Ingegneria Informatica) and an emblematic car manufacturer (BMW). 

The consortium has a strong academic participation from research centres and universities that will focus on solutions for optimal configuration, control and operation of electric vehicle chargers (IREC, RSE, RWTH Aachen University), enabling them to provide flexibility services to the grid, interoperability and harmonisation of protocols and standardisation (DTU, Maynooth University), investment planning and multi-criteria assessment (University College Dublin, TU Delft), and user engagement and satisfaction (TU Chemnitz).
The consortium leverages the extraordinary networks of industry associations in electromobility (AVERE) and the electricity grid (E.DSO) perspectives.

FLOW is funded by the European Union (grant agreement n. 101056730).

Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

Press media contact

Head of E.DSO Project Team: Ondřej Černý

Mail: ondrej.cerny@edsoforsmartgrids.eu

Phone: +32 475 151 230

E.DSO Representative in FLOW: Selene Liverani

Mail: selene.liverani@edsoforsmartgrids.eu

Phone: +32 470 40 18 05

The REPowerEU plan calls on Europe to fast forward its energy transition, building on the more ambitious climate targets set by the ‘Fit for 55’ package. With electricity as the key energy carrier for a carbon-neutral future, innovation in power networks needs to be sped up.

On 29 June, InnoGrid 2022 was held for its 11th Edition in which E.DSO and ENTSO-E are co-organisers. It gathered policy-makers, grid operators, grid users, market participants, innovators, academics, and civil society representatives to discuss how to accelerate innovation in three key areas: electricity grids, active customers, and flexibility. Around 200 participants met and enjoyed networking, also together with projects representatives in the exhibition area, and more than 300 people were connected online.

Opening the Conference, Energy Commissioner, Kadri Simson underlined that: “The ripple effects of the Russian aggression to Ukraine have caused every aspects of our energy systems to change. We have entered into a new environment. The cooperation between DSOs and TSOs is crucial for the energy transition to happen.”

José Careto, E.DSO Vice Chair and CEO of E-Redes Portugal, stressed that: “This acceleration requires a pro-active position from system operators. This implies that the integration of all these new distributed resources (RES, EVs, storage, RECs) needs to be done and managed in a coordinated and responsible manner, so we can ensure the capabilities of our networks to act as a cost-effective backbone to this transition.”

Sonya Twohig, ENTSO-E Secretary General, highlighted that “Innovation in power system distribution and transmission and its fast uptake is key to Europe’s energy transition. The needs for flexibility will ramp up to ensure the stability and security of the power system with increasing share of variable renewable energy sources. Next to the necessary infrastructure developments, TSO/DSO cooperation, innovation and digitilisation are equally needed”.

This conference follows the online session on 14 June, where 13 innovative projects were showcased. The key takeaways of the policy session of InnoGrid 2022 highlighted the need for allowing for new solutions to be developed and tested as well as the necessary framework to be set in place for an increased innovation uptake. All participants of InnoGrid 2022 emphasised the need to accelerate the development of a European toolbox answering the challenges we are facing today and preparing for a more secure and sustainable future.

The presentations of the conference are here and the recording is available here.

More information on http://www.innogrid.eu.

E.DSO publishes its position paper on EU Hydrogen and Decarbonised Gas Market Package. This paper sets the DSOs’ underpinning approach to important regulatory loopholes touching upon the repurposing of the gas infrastructure to hydrogen, considerations for a better integrated sector coupling, and the EC proposal to include gas DSOs into the newly established EU DSO Entity.

E.DSO members advocate for a holistic, forward-looking EU regulatory framework that will promote the positive contribution of DSOs to the Fit for 55 package and its implication on the EU hydrogen economy. We particularly acknowledge that sector coupling can provide innovative solutions to the flexibility short-term and longer-term needs of the electric system, where synergies and complementarities can be exploited across energy sectors, essentially creating a cost and energy-efficient system if it is integrated smartly. A smart energy sector coupling is thus required, and, if successfully integrated, can contribute to cost-efficient investment decisions in, and use of energy infrastructure.