Image: University of Wuppertal

Intelligent power grids: Bergisch University involved in the development of a trading platform

In the course of the energy transition, medium and low-voltage grids are facing new challenges due to the constantly growing number of decentralized feeders, such as private photovoltaic systems on rooftops, and the increasing number of power-intensive consumers, such as e-mobility. As an alternative to cost-intensive network expansion, network automation solutions are gradually becoming established that provide an equivalent, but in some cases considerably less expensive, response to the challenges outlined above. The chair of Prof. Zdrallek has been working in this field for a long time on the research and optimization of agent-based concepts, which are ideal for the interaction of a high number of different devices and systems in the supply network. The standardization of such technologies and systems is of great importance for the progress of the energy transition.

With PEAK, which follows on from the previous project Agent.HyGrid, the Wuppertal scientists and their partners are striving to develop an integrated trading platform for energy suppliers and customers for the efficient control of the electricity grid and the integration of increasing shares of renewable energies. For a cost-optimized solution, they are relying on the use of new electricity meters, so-called smart meters, and the use of “blockchain” technology for reliable trade settlement between the contractual partners. “The platform networks all participants in the supply network and allows new players to join without compromising supply security or preventing existing network capacities from being optimally utilized. The focus is on preventive grid status monitoring, which in the best case scenario prevents grid bottlenecks from occurring in the first place,” explains Prof. Zdrallek, Chair of Electrical Power Supply Technology.

His team contributes its experience in the field of network monitoring and control. During the course of the project, a field test is planned within the Smart Grid Laboratory at the Freudenberg Campus of the Bergische Universität. In addition, further scenarios are to be investigated within the framework of a “virtual pilot”. The focus here is on the growth of decentralised feed-in, the expansion of e-mobility and larger grid areas.

Research partners in the project are the Forschungsstelle für Energiewirtschaft e.V., PSI Energy Markets GmbH, the University of Duisburg-Essen, the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Helmut Schmidt University – University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg and PSI GridConnect GmbH.