The digitalization and increasingly interconnected infrastructure of the energy system has become one of the major drivers, alongside the continuing expansion of renewable energy generation, of the changes currently affecting all aspects of the energy sector and the actors within it. The C/sells project will put this decentralized, digitalized version of the Energiewende to the test with a slew of groundbreaking projects, all united by three guiding principles: Cellularity, Participation, and Diversity.
The role of the FfE in C/sells
In C/sells the FfE is exploring the challenges and opportunities created by a digitalized energy system, with a particular focus on research in the following areas:
- Conception and Field Trial of the Altdorfer Flex-Market (ALF)
- System-Scale Feedback/Interactions
- Recommended Actions
C/sells brings together more than 60 research institutes, energy suppliers, network operators, consultants, and technology firms as partners in a joint project designed to demonstrate the energy system of the future in a test region spanning Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg, and Hesse. Over four years, this project will show firsthand how intelligent energy supply can succeed. More than 30 demonstration cells will host highly-visible pilot projects, in addition to intensive citizen participation campaigns in nine participation cells.
You can find more detailed information about all aspects of the C/sells project here.
C/sells is part of the Federal Ministry of Economy and Energy’s funding program “Smart Energy Showcases – Digital Agenda for the Energy Transition” (SINTEG). The goal of SINTEG is the development and exhibition of solutions that enable and encourage the sustainable, reliable, and affordable supply of energy featuring high proportions of renewable energy. After being demonstrated in pioneer regions across Germany these solutions should also be able to be scaled up for wide-scale use. At the core of the plan is the intelligent interconnection of generation and consumption of energy, driven by the use of innovative new network technologies and business models. Successful solutions developed during the project will serve as examples to base future systems on.
In addition to the research areas described above, the FfE serves as the C/sells regional coordinator for Bavaria, and as a subcontractor in the Intelligent Heating for Munich project led by the Stadtwerke München.
Incentives & Goals
The increasing market penetration of electric automobiles and electric heating in homes and businesses has combined with continued expansion of decentralized renewable energy generation, placing new and larger burdens on local electric grids. Both of these trends are expected by many to continue at increased rates. One potential solution is decentralized flexibility – combining the local or regional potential of a multitude of smart devices, all with the ability to adjust their energy use, in order to relieve stress on the grid.
Additionally, a potential analysis and the development of new methods for the use of flexibility options in the context of the larger power system will help optimize the integration of renewable energy into the system. This will take the form of the conception and deployment of a flexibility platform in Altdorf, a partner cell in eastern Bavaria.
The development of methodical approaches within the scope of the project will assist the search for answers to, among many others, the following guiding questions:
- How can digitalized energy infrastructure be used to enable the realization of a solar-centric/solar-dominated energy system within the context of the Energiewende?
- How can flexibility be tapped to enable the integration of renewable energy sources into the grid, and what would the value of this be for the distribution network operators?
- Which concepts and methods will prove themselves in practice and can offer a blueprint for widespread use?
|(Basic data and flexibility potential)|
Quantifying the regional potential of flexibility represents an essential research topic, to be tackled by multiple teams at the FfE. While one group will conduct load-flow studies with the FfE tool Gridsim to determine the current flexibility needs of the distribution network, another will determine the extent to which flexibility options can assist with optimizing network operations.
In order to provide a solid foundation of data to place and appraise flexibility within the distribution network, further highly detailed datasets will be added to the regionalized energy system modelling tool developed by the FfE, FREM. Further data collected will be used to improve the prediction and aggregation functions of the model.
Figure 1: Definition and categorization of flexibility terms
|(Strenghtening the grid through flexibility)|
In order to harness the potential of different flexibility options a Flex-Platform will be developed and tested Altdorf, a partner cell in eastern Bavaria. The main goal of the platform is to create new market structures that bring together network operators and the wide variety of flexibility suppliers, with a focus on their potential to relieve grid congestion. In addition to conceptualizing and implementing a flexibility platform in cooperation with other key stakeholders, the requirements of a flexibility platform will also be studied from techno-economic and legal-regulatory points of view.
Figure 2: Smart market platforms in C/sell
Further information can be found in the Concept Paper of the Altdorf Flex-Market.
|(including subject concept)|
The academic observation of the rollout of smart grid components in the region of Altdorf bei Landshut continues to provide insights regarding the added value of smart/interconnected infrastructure for the provision of electricity. Even more importantly, these technologies are the foundation upon which the design of the Altdorf Flex-Market is based. 30-60 households, public institutions, and businesses will be recruited as test subjects for the Altdorf Flex-Market, which was conceptualized by the FfE and implemented in cooperation with Bayernwerk, and given the opportunity to market their flexible facilities to the grid operator in order to avoid grid bottlenecks. Scientific studies assessing public acceptance of the digitalization of the energy system will also be conducted in concert with this field trial, particularly to appraise the influence active participation by citizens has on their acceptance of digitalization.
Figure 4: ALF flyer for the field test in Altdorf
Figure 5: Interview with the FfE C/sells team on the field test in Altdorf
Figure 6: Impressions from the project region in Altdorf near Landshut
|(Effects on the energy system, e.g. avoidance of grid bottlenecks; Holistic assessments, e.g. sustainability of digitalized energy infrastructure)|
Digitalized infrastructure and the changes accompanying the digitalization process will fundamentally change the energy system as we know it. This module will study, among other things, how so-called “Prosumer-Cells” (used to model flexibility platforms) behave in the context of the larger system. ISAaR, the energy system modelling tool developed by the FfE, will be vital in this process. Additionally, the consequences resulting from the implementation of the smart grid infrastructure required for the flexibility platform will be analyzed. Effects on sustainability, both ecological and in terms of the resilience of the energy system, is one such key research area.
Figure 7: Market designs to be investigated
To ensure that useful insights gleaned from C/sells can be put into practice by stakeholders, even while the project is still active, a variety of stakeholder-specific manuals will be produced that address challenges of digitalization and present recommended courses of actions to move forwards towards the digital and sustainable energy system of the future.
Figure 9: C/sells-internal recipe for the use case methodology
Figure 10: Project profile of the FfE-activities in C/sells
- Energie ist digital! C/sells Ministerdialog am 1. April 2019 in München
- Flexmärkte brauchen aktive Bürger - Interview mit dem Team von "Ich bin Zukunft"
- Mit der Use Case Methodik zur erfolgreichen Demonstration
- C/sells: Drittes UAP 6.3.1 Treffen in München
- Beitrag zum Energiekongress der Landtagsgrünen
- Mit innovativen studentischen Ideen die Digitalisierung des Energiesystems nachhaltig gestalten
- Regionalisierte Märkte und zukunftsfähige IKT
- Vernetzt die Energiewende gestalten – C/sells Regionaltreffen an der Forschungsstelle für Energiewirtschaft
- Regionalkoordination Bayern – Vernetzung im Projekt C/sells
- Schaufensterprojekt C/sells der SINTEG-Förderinitiative
- Einspeisemanagement – Auf der Suche nach den Ursachen
- Auftakt zur Demonstration der intelligenten Energiezukunft
- Bayern ist Gastgeber der C/sells Partnerversammlung
- Digitalisierte Netzinfrastruktur als Teil eines nachhaltigen, resilienten Energiesystems
- FfE auf dem Innovationsforum "Nachhaltige Energiesysteme - sicher, dezentral, vernetzt" vertreten
- FfE startet C/sells Movement mit München-Marathon
- Kurzstudie: Flexibilitätsintegration als wichtiger Baustein eines effizienten Energiesystems
- Intelligente Flexibilitätsanreize Ostbayern - Ein Smart Grid Feldversuch im Rahmen des Verbundprojektes C/sells
Funding and Partners
The research activities described here will be conducted by the Forschungsstelle für Energiewirtschaft e.V. and the Forschungsgesellschaft für Energiewirtschaft mbH as part of the joint project C/sells. These activities are funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economy and Energy (BMWi) as part of the funding program “Smart Energy Showcases – Digital Agenda for the Energy Transition” (SINTEG – funding code: 03SIN121).
In addition to the BMWi, Bayernwerk AG, Intel Deutschland GmbH, and the Stadtwerke Augsburg Netze GmbH also provide the FfE with financial support, data, and valuable insight from industry experts. Furthermore, these key partners will evaluate the results of the various projects and the potential for application in their respective services areas.