Zug, Switzerland — 24 May 2022 — We’re pleased to share an update on ElectraFlex, our project with Electra Caldense to implement a demand flexibility market to increase grid flexibility.
‘Flexibility’, in this case, refers to the ability to balance power generation with energy consumption using distributed energy resources, with the goal of increasing efficiency and resilience across an increasingly decarbonized network.
First announced in February 2021, ElectraFlex is the world’s first decentralized flexibility platform tailored for the specific needs of a distribution system operator (DSO).
Working with Energy Web on the ElectraFlex project is Electra Caldense, a 100% renewable energy retailer which serves 12,800 users in a region of Catalonia just north of Barcelona. Spain has excellent solar resources, and uptake of renewable energy in Catalonia is set to increase over the coming years. ElectraFlex has the goal of creating a demand flexibility market which incorporates multiple assets, customers, and industrial partners within Electra Caldense’s region, with the goal of balancing renewable energy generation as efficiently as possible across all participants in order to create a single low-carbon electricity system.
The pioneering project is the product of a collaboration between multiple partners, including Electra Caldense, Bamboo Energy, Vega Chargers, Top Cable, CAESA, and CEGASA. Energy Web’s technology stack is being used to assign digital identities to the different assets and market participants, allowing them to register in energy markets and offer flexibility services, while Bamboo Energy’s software solution for demand aggregation is being deployed to manage and optimize demand flexibility for companies enrolled in the project.
VEGA successfully completes EV charging with ElectraFlex
In the first breakthrough on the project with a real asset, electric vehicle (EV) charging company VEGA Chargers completed a test run, serving as a proof-of-concept for the integration of assets onto future flexibility markets, this month with the successful live charging of an EV.
The VEGA EV charger also allowed the level of charge in the EV to be checked remotely and power to be purchased automatically.
This charging solution is planned to provide benefits to consumers, allowing any EV owner to participate in the flexibility market from their EV charger. Users will be able to set their car to charge during times of the day when generation is at a surplus and energy is at its cheapest, saving costs and getting the most from renewable power.
In the future, EVs participating in the market will even be able to charge bidirectionally, purchasing energy at midday, and then feeding energy back into the home at night or selling it back to the flexibility market at periods when total generation is lower.
Top Cable rolls out efficiency for production lines
Top Cable, the electric cable manufacturer, has now been successfully integrated into the ElectraFlex ecosystem to optimize its energy consumption.
Bamboo Energy’s demand aggregation software platform integrated into ElectraFlex allows Top Cable to adapt its energy consumption to take advantage of different hourly electricity prices, managing six different production lines. In addition, the facility can adapt its consumption when needed with the goal to achieve a perfect balance of energy production and consumption in the grid.
In an industrial setting, this Proof-of-Concept sets the stage for significant cost savings for companies whose operations depend on large amounts of electricity and could be rolled out across any industrial partner.
Future onboarding through SunSpec Alliance
As part of the ElectraFlex project, Energy Web is also developing and deploying the EW SunSpec Gateway, an open-source toolkit that allows any distributed energy resource compliant with the SunSpec Modbus Specification to have its own digital identity on the Energy Web stack.
Sunspec Alliance, a trade alliance of over 160 solar and storage companies across Asia, Europe and North America, is a member of Energy Web and in 2020 announced a strategic partnership with Energy Web to co-develop digital standards that support interoperability for solar PV and battery energy storage technologies.
This means that any solar panels with SunSpec compliant inverters, which is the majority of new panels, will be able to be on-boarded onto ElectraFlex easily and contribute on the generation side to the flexibility market.
Our continued work with SunSpec is invaluable for the future goals of the ElectraFlex project, as we look to onboard as much solar PV as possible as we build the flexibility market ecosystem.
About Energy Web
Energy Web is a global, member-driven non-profit accelerating the low-carbon, customer-centric energy transition by unleashing the potential of open-source, digital technologies. Our Energy Web Decentralized Operating System (EW-DOS) enables any energy asset, owned by any customer, to participate in any energy market. The Energy Web Chain — the world’s first enterprise-grade, public blockchain tailored to the energy sector — anchors the EW-DOS tech stack. The Energy Web ecosystem comprises leading utilities, grid operators, renewable energy developers, corporate energy buyers, IoT / telecom leaders, and others.
About Bamboo Energy
Bamboo Energy is a technological spin-off of the Catalan Energy Research Institute (IREC) created in 2020 in Barcelona that has developed an energy optimization platform based on artificial intelligence, with the purpose of decisively contributing to the promotion of a new energy model decentralized and based on renewable sources. It manages the consumption of all types of flexible assets for their participation in different electricity markets in an aggregate and coordinated way.
About VEGA Chargers
VEGA Chargers is a company specialized in the design and production of fast DC electric vehicle charging stations.
At VEGA Chargers we work every day to make possible a more sustainable present and future in terms of e-Mobility, for this we analyse the needs of our customers and provide flexible and scalable charging solutions for electric vehicles, starting with concept and going through design to manufacturing.
About Electra Caldense (DSO)
Electra Caldense is a distribution system operator founded in 1917 and since then guaranteeing power supply to more than 12,400 users within 10 municipalities in the Vallès Oriental and Occidental regions (Barcelona), among other regions in Catalonia. For more, please visit https://electracaldensedistribucio.com/es/
About Electra Energia (Energy Retailer)
Electra Energia is an energy retailer within Electra’s same group of companies, which commercializes 100% certified green energy to more than 12,800 clients, including residential and industrial customers. For more, please visit https://electracaldenseenergia.com/