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FLEXCoop: Democratizing energy markets

FlexcoopFLEXCoop approaches the democratisation of energy markets through the introduction of innovative flexibility-based demand response tools and novel business and market models for energy cooperatives. This project is based on end-to-end Automated Demand-Response (DR) Optimization Framework, which aims to enable the realization of novel business models, allowing energy cooperatives to introduce themselves in energy markets under the role of an aggregator.

It equips cooperatives with innovative and highly effective tools for the establishment of robust business practices to exploit consumers flexibility as dynamic Virtual Power Plants (VPPs) providing balancing and ancillary resources toward grid stability and alleviation of network constraints.

Flexcoop

FLEXCoop brings together a wide range of baseline technologies to build an open and interoperable DR optimization framework includes a fully-fledged tool suite for energy cooperatives (aggregators) and prosumers involved in the DR value chain, ensuring:

  • End-to-end interoperability between energy networks, energy management systems and devices
  • Realization of new business models for energy cooperatives
  • Residential energy consumers empowerment and transformation into active market players

Objectives

FLEXCoop project is now at the starting point, defining the key objectives and business scenarios examined in the project. The FLEXCoop objectives can be summarised around six main pillars, namely:

  • Objective 1: Safeguard distribution grid reliability and the transition to a more fossil-free energy future through explicit automated demand response strategies on the basis of aggregated flexibility utilization.
  • Objective 2: Enable intelligence enhancement of Smart Home Systems with the integration of ICT-enabled human-centric DR optimization and the provision of innovative services to prosumers.
  • Objective 3: Democratizing energy markets, through the introduction of residential prosumers as active players in energy markets and the transparent sharing of benefits achieved between the stakeholders involved.
  • Objective 4: Deliver an open standards-based modular solution that ensures end-to-end interoperability between smart grids, energy management systems and smart home devices and holds a high replication potential around the EU.
  • Objective 5: Tackle major market entry barriers for prosumers with the introduction of suitable business models for energy cooperatives.
  • Objective 6: Promote the adoption of the FLEXCoop solution as a next-generation demand response optimization framework through intense dissemination and knowledge transfer of the project’s outcomes towards the targeted stakeholders, reaching out to international audiences within and beyond the EU.

Implementation

FLEXCoop brings together a wide range of baseline technologies to build an open and interoperable end-to-end automated DR optimization framework, including a fully-fledged tool suite for energy cooperatives (aggregators) and prosumers involved in the Demand Response value chain.

The FLEXCoop solution will enable Energy Cooperatives / Aggregators to:

  • Accurately forecast Demand Response potential and demand flexibility of prosumers.
  • Continuously monitor the evolution of Demand Response events and signals and revise pre-defined strategy through an open and semantically enhanced DER registry.
  • Negotiate with individual DER owners on the terms (frequency, duration, capacity) of flexibility activation.
  • Ensure objective DR settlement and prosumer remuneration on the basis of a properly adapted Performance Measurement and Verification methodology.
  • Ultimately, optimize cooperative-operated microgrids and DER portfolios using appropriate optimization algorithms embedded in the FLEXCoop Global Demand Manager.

And enabling Prosumers to:

  • Increase their awareness and knowledge of their consumption patterns.
  • Increase their local intelligence via the Human-Centric Energy Management and Control Decision Support framework that locally optimizes demand response.
  • Optimise self-consumption by leveraging cost-effective storage
  • Obtain the best energy deal through access to suitable open infrastructures FLEXCoop: a) DER Registry FLEXCoop; b) open and transparent marketplace.
  • The achieve this, the project will develop an innovative suite of tools, services and applications based on end-to-end interoperability between energy networks, building energy management systems and end-consumer devices towards establishing an “open” big data management framework. Thus FLEXCoop will deliver, the FLEXCoop Open Smart Box (OSB) device for energy management at the house level and a platform, enabling interoperable communication among a variety of heterogeneous sources and collection, processing and management of consumers data.
  • The different technologies needed range in Technology Readness Levels (TRL) 3 to 5 and will achieve TRL 6 throughout the project.
Flexicoop

Future impact

The FLEXCoop solution will:

  1. Contribute to ongoing EU Energy Policy developments in the field of the design of the internal electricity market, the retail market and self-consumption;
  2. Promote the integration of large share of renewables, in a stable and secure way by introducing novel technologies and value-adding tools to enable the optimized orchestration between demand, generation and storage assets;
  3. Enable and/or enhance demand response schemes bringing proven and quantified benefits for the grid, the consumers/prosumers and the cooperatives;
  4. Promote the validation of innovative business models in two energy cooperatives to establish the monetary, societal, environmental and other aspects of the business model with an emphasis to showcase a viable and profitable business case for the cooperative within their principles that include energy democracy, prosumer empowerment, autonomy, solidarity and independence;
  5. Enable the consortium companies to deliver adequate competitive product and services on the market years after the end of the project, promoting that way the business innovation of the framework.

Grant agreement reference: 773909/FLEXCoop

Project duration: 01/10/2017 - 30/09/2020

Project total cost: 3.979.190 €

EU contribution: 3.979.190 €

Further details