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CORDIS - EU research results



Reporting period: 2022-08-01 to 2023-11-30


EUNIVERSAL's primary goal was to implement the Universal Market Enabling Interface (UMEI) concept by bringing forward a universal, open, adaptable and modular approach to interlink active system management with electricity markets and foster the provision of flexibility services. A set of market-oriented flexibility services from DERs will be implemented to answer DSOs’ needs in a cost-effectively way, supporting the energy transition. Three different DEMO sites, located in Portugal, Germany, and Poland, will be run to validate the project solutions to show the universality of the concept and to support the roadmap for their further deployment and dissemination.

The project started on February 2020 and finished no November 2023.

Objectives included UMEI demonstration, enhancing grid flexibility, incentivizing market flexibility, optimizing network planning, reducing technical restrictions, increasing grid resilience, establishing business models, and bridging the gap to future scenarios.

The methodology involved setting a common framework in WP1, development in WP2-5, implementation and validation in WP7-8-9, coordination in WP6, and result exploitation in WP10. WP11 ensured dissemination and communication.

Innovation highlights the UMEI, fostering synergies between system operators and market actors through a modular, adaptable interface. The Smart Grid solutions focus on novel strategies, observability, control, and resilience in the DSO toolbox.

Conclusively, the UMEI, DSO toolbox, DLR system, and Flexstation were successfully developed and demonstrated in the designated demo areas.
Tasks finalised in the P3 are:
WP4: T4.3 T4.4
WP5: T5.3
WP6: T6.1 T6.2
WP7: T7.2 T7.3
WP8: T8.2 T8.3
WP9: T9.2 T9.3
WP10: T10.3 T10.4
WP11: T11.1 T11.2 T11.3 T11.4

All Milestones were achieved.

Overview of the results and their exploitation and dissemination:

Pillar 1: UMEI
For a local flexibility market, collaboration among stakeholders is crucial. Without a facilitating interface like UMEI, diverse communication processes for each market platform emerge, leading to increased costs and the risk of platform lock-in. UMEI, demonstrated in the EUniversal project, provides a standardized solution, addressing these challenges.

Pillar 2: DSO Toolbox
To integrate renewable energy, DSOs need enhanced flexibility. EUniversal's tools enable predictive and coordinated management, extending observability from HV to LV networks, and improving control mechanisms. DSOs must adapt strategies to interact with the evolving market ecosystem.

Pillar 3: Flexibility Enabling Technologies
EUniversal focuses on improving conditions for DSOs and TSOs. Pillar 3 emphasizes enhancing FSP conditions and reducing barriers for consumer participation through an improved aggregation algorithm, end-user engagement, and a developed flexibility toolbox.

Pillar 4: Markets
Flexibility at the distribution level is critical for addressing grid limitations. The Clean Energy Package highlights non-discriminatory access, emphasizing the need for network codes to cover regulatory aspects. EUniversal contributes insights on demand response, DSO and TSO tasks, flexibility incentives, and energy storage facility ownership.

In EUniversal, three DSO demonstrations tested a universal approach through local flexibility markets. Research on flexibility mechanisms, market issues, optimal tariffs, and P2P market impacts on DSO needs complemented these demonstrations.
a) Flexibility Toolbox (M9), b) Business Use Cases to unlock flexibility service provision (M15), c) Challenges and opportunities for electricity grids and markets (M18), d) UMEI API functional specification of DSO Interface for standardized market platforms Interaction (M18), e) Tools to improve observability, control and operation of distribution networks in real‐time (M24), f) Regulatory recommendations (M24), g) Evaluation of market mechanisms from a multi-stakeholder perspective (M30), h)Scalability and Replicability analysis of the EUniversal solutions (M36), i) Demonstration results assessment and conclusions (M42), j) Roadmap – strategy for the further deployment of the EUniversal solutions (M42)
Replicability: standardised flexibility services for distribution grids and interaction with transmission grids through UMEI, in different regulatory/ grid contexts
KPI: 1) Increased RES / DER hosting capacity > 50%; 2) Increase storage solutions penetration; 3) 60% of SAIDI / SAIFI improvement using novel methodology for including grid resilience metric in planning and operation of the distribution grid; 4) >6 standardised flexibility services for distribution grids provided by DER, storage, microgrids or energy communities, through UMEI, with different regulatory/ grid contexts; 5) Distribution grid investment avoidance or deferral by the use of flexibility (>30%); 6) Power of flexibility activated by energy players; 7) Reinforcement of Distribution Grid Resilience, including in Extreme Events (40%).
Market Transformation: Enabling technologies; Coordination between DSOs and market players; agnostic integration of market platforms.
System planning and operation: distribution grid investment avoidance/deferral due to the use of flexibility; new data-driven tools to pre-identify technical problems and define the most adequate control actions to accommodate DERs and EVs; Resilience-driven planning tools to allow for the reinforcement of Distribution grid Resilience and flexibility to Extreme Events; SAIDI / SAIFI improvement using novel methodology including predictive grid management tools for LV/MV networks.
Socio-economics: Empowering energy consumers through flexibility, contribution for the future design of dynamic network tariffs, peer-to peer enablement;
Environment: Contribution for the transition to a low-carbon society
Policy impacts: Clean Energy Package goals
• Consumers active participation
o through consumers’ access to the energy markets
o active participation in the energy transition
• Evolving roles of DSOs
o As Active System Managers
o As Market facilitators
• Contribution to the design of incentives (dynamic tariffs et. Al.) for DSOs to procure flexibility from network users.
The development of the UMEI allows for a future standardization of an interface capable of easily integrating, in an open and safe environment, DSOs, market agents as well as TSOs platforms. This will allow for an effective market enablement, resulting in a futureproof interoperable ecosystem.