Managing, rather than supplying
Our total network is 574,000 km long and stretches across 5 European countries. In Germany, we transported more electricity in 2017 than any other distribution grid operator. With decentralisation, the role of the major energy companies is changing: energy providers are becoming energy managers. In a decentralised energy market, they have to incorporate electricity from increasing numbers of power plants in the grids while balancing out the fluctuations due to wind or solar energy.
Electricity when and where you need it
This trend is still continuing. Many people are already taking advantage of the opportunity to conveniently and independently use their self-generated electricity at home and feed it into the grid. The share of these prosumers – customers who both consume and produce energy – is going to keep increasing, and they will be able to share their resources with their families, friends and neighbours.
„Our goal is to redesign the energy infrastructure as a vision for the future.“Hildegard Müller, COO Grid & Infrastructure innogy SE
Hildegard Müller, COO Grid & Infrastructure
Virtual power plants control decentralised generators
With the SmartPool IT platform, innogy has brought the virtual power plant of the next generation onto the market. Virtual power plants control the distribution and sales of electricity produced by multiple small generators. These were previously designed to pool several hundreds of generators, but SmartPool is capable of managing several thousands. This means that the processes become significantly cheaper.
SmartPool not only markets the aggregated green electricity, it also balances out fluctuations and keeps the grid stable – an accomplished feat considering the high production share of weather-dependent wind and solar energy.
Energy from far and wide
In a decentralised energy market, innogy’s SmartPool provides the prosumer with an efficient, balanced electricity supply.
Functions of SmartPool
SmartPool performs 3 functions:
Participants in the SmartPool
The 3 functions named above control the energy management for 9 participants in the SmartPool system.
Connecting energy creatively
The energy system of the future connects a number of small parts together as a whole, and we are testing this already – with Designetz. Led by innogy and funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) 46 partner organisations from the energy sector, industry, and research and development collaborated to study the energy system of the future.
Designetz is one of 5 “showcases” in the SINTEG (showcases for intelligent energy) programme – digital agenda for the energy transition, which was initiated by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi). The goal of this programme is to develop model solutions for a climate-friendly, reliable and efficient energy supply. Designetz was launched on 1 January 2017 and received 30 million euros from the government.
Designetz – the sum of all the parts
Designetz starts with the prosumer and links all participants with one another. Connecting the local producers and consumers allows for the local utilisation of renewable energy. When this cannot be balanced, the search is extended to neighbouring regional or inter-regional distribution grids.
Cascading energy management
Local energy cells are connected to regional and interregional distribution grid zones. Energy is exchanged with the zone on the next level when there is an energy surplus or deficit.
Test regions for Designetz
3 regions with highly diverse consumption patterns, representative of Germany as a whole.
Digitalisation of the grid
Our aim is the management of flexibility and development as well as the provision of products and services.
Energy generation is becoming decentralised, shifting from traditional power plants to a more efficient total energy system consisting of many diverse participants.
Data technology allows the distribution of energy loads to be managed and analysed efficiently.
Reflecting the trend of decentralisation, traditional production architecture is also shifting towards smaller decentralised systems such as solar panels on private houses.
A surplus production of energy is stored at many locations to support decentralised generation. This allows for flexible use of resources.
Thanks to the synergy between power plants and grids in the digitalised energy system, decentralised energy can be distributed efficiently.
Designetz makes allowances for the shift towards decentralised charging facilities associated with electric vehicles. Batteries thus also serve as a means of storage in the energy system of the future.
A decentralised energy industry also presents the market with new challenges. New market participants must be taken into account in the future and must be compensated for their energy production or consumption.
Strong partnerships for the future of energy
47 consortium partners from municipal utilities, business, industry, technology and research are working together in over 30 subprojects.