Icon Aggregator Services for Energy Communities

Practical example and current challenges

  • The efficient and cross-sectoral control of energy production plants (heat and electricity) at the quarter level is focused by many research projects and real-life laboratory activities. The focus is on coordinating the operating modes of plants, especially the role of "aggregators", who identify and use the flexibilities of multiple quarters. In addition, the “Clean energy for all Europeans Package” explicitly addresses the promotion of renewable energy communities and communal energy communities that create new business models for energy production plant operations. The necessary aggregator services differ fundamentally from existing SCADA systems (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) at distribution grid level as well as from solutions for managing virtual power plants.
  • Currently, the users involved are faced with the problem that the required functionality cannot be found in any existing system. Existing SCADA systems at distribution grid level are usually set up as customized on-premise solutions. Existing solutions for the management of virtual power plants could already cover the requirements of optimized operating strategies of energy production plants in the district, are instantiated in the cloud and, if necessary, also multi-tenant. However, there are no further functions for the use of flexibilities from different quarters, such as those required for energy aggregators or in the future for municipalities for renewable energies and municipal energy communities.
  • The solution scenario shown is currently only solved for partial aspects of the industry (e.g. plant operation in the context of a quarter), it cannot be implemented across manufacturers and is not available as as-a-service solution. Implementation in individual cases can require the connection of a few thousand data points from systems of different manufacturers in dozens of quarters and may require man years of work.
Infografik: Aggregator Services for Energy Communities

What added value does the "GAIA-X project" offer?

  • Energy production plant data (e.g. pump status, temperature levels) and measured values (e.g. electricity and heat quantities) can be securely transferred from the quarter's production plants to a GAIA-X-based cloud infrastructure. There the data is transferred into schedules for the systems and communicated back to the systems together with forecasts of future consumption and production.
  • This use case would initially only cover the business model of the contractor (system operator and local energy supplier in the quarter). It could be gradually expanded via GAIA-X in order to implement additional business models such as marketing of flexibilities outside of the quarter or automated derivation of recommended actions for system extensions.
  • GAIA-X could provide a significant acceleration and solve the recurring problem: data sovereignty can be solved in a compatible and neutral way for everyone when accessing and distributing data.
  • The functions as well as the benefits of the system using GAIA-X can be differentiated according to the various actors involved. In this way, many individual business models can be created.

Use Case Team

  • Sebastian Lehnhoff – OFFIS
  • Sven Rosinger – OFFIS