Democratizing energy markets through the introduction of innovative flexibility-based demand response tools and novel business and market models for energy cooperatives
FLEXCoop introduces an end-to-end Automated Demand Response 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.
Optimization in FLEXCoop applies to multiple levels. It spans local generation output, demand and storage flexibility, as well as the flexibility offered by EVs to facilitate maximum RES integration into the grid, avoidance of curtailment and satisfaction of balancing and ancillary grid needs. This is achieved via automated, human-centric demand response schemes with the participation of appropriately selected residential prosumers.
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
To enhance prosumer acceptance, the FLEXCoop innovative services will feature non-intrusiveness, comfort and well-being preservation, non-violation of prosumer daily schedules as well as maximization of benefits through transparent and open participation in markets. It will also guarantee easy switching between DR service providers, vendor lock-in avoidance, customized DR service contracts and objective settlement and remuneration, thus establishing an energy democracy context and empowering prosumers to become active energy market players.
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.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme