Periodic Reporting for period 2 - GOFLEX (Generalized Operational FLEXibility for Integrating Renewables in the Distribution Grid)
Reporting period: 2018-05-01 to 2020-02-29
The GOFLEX suite of technologies manages energy production and consumption at the local level, from the bottom up. In so doing, the project invites consumers to participate actively in energy markets by offering---on a voluntary, consensual, remunerative, and automatic basis---to be flexible in their energy production and/or consumption. This flexibility, also known as demand-response, can help balance electricity supply with demand. By taking a bottom-up approach, GOFLEX makes demand-response more cost-effective and increases the level of demand-response available. We achieve this increase by introducing dynamic prices for and automatic trading of demand-response capacity. The possibility for automatic trading, including aggregating smaller amounts of demand-response, enables energy storage in physical processes such as heating and cooling. These processes can thus become virtual storage reservoirs. Managing flexible loads with a view to grid conditions requires systems capable of optimizing for local or grid-level conditions. Finally, DSOs need improved observability and manageability of the distribution grid to use demand-response in an optimal way. Improving observability requires grid and weather forecast data along with energy market data. The project concludes with three demonstrations where the GOFLEX integrated system has been deployed and evaluated. The demonstrations showed that this vision of an innovative, automatic, and flexible bottom-up energy system can safely increase the installed capacity of renewable energy sources by 20-60%.
The key exploitable results from GOFLEX project are the FlexOffer and the GOFLEX integrated system. FlexOffers are a unified way of describing energy flexibility for (dis-)aggregation, optimization and activation. The FlexOffer concept is disseminated in scientific publications and open-source implementations and exploited in commercial products and a spin-out company. The exploitable result of the GOFLEX integrated system comprises technologies for energy management, distribution observability with forecasting, and flexibility trading integrated through FlexOffers. The integrated system is disseminated through workshops, fairs and tradeshows and exploited by introducing the system as a whole and as individual components to the market.
The contributions GOFLEX makes to the state of the art should create socio-economic impact and wider societal implications in the form of a transformed energy market where final consumers play an active part. In order for consumers to play this active part, surveys of prosumers participating in GOFLEX found that the technological solutions should be reliable and secure above all else. This baseline enables energy management technologies to highlight waste and inefficient behaviors. It also allows distribution system operators to gain real-time trading of load flexibility and improve observability of energy demand, generation, and flexibility at a local level. Taken together these advances can transform the markets for generation, delivery, and consumption of energy.