Sim4Blocks Simulation supported real-time energy management in building blocks

Sim4Blocks Residential demand response - BEE Group CIMNE
Acronym Sim4Blocks
Start date 01/04/2016        End date: 31/03/2020 Extended until 30/09/2020
Program H2020-EU.3.3.1 G.A.: 695965 View Cordis file card
Topic EE-06-2015 – Demand response in blocks of buildings

SIM4BLOCKS will develop innovative demand response (DR) services for smaller residential and commercial customers, implement and test these services in three pilot sites and transfer successful DR models to customers of Project partners in further European countries. The pilot sites are blocks of highly energy efficient buildings with a diverse range of renewable and cogeneration supply systems and requisite ICT infrastructure that allows direct testing of DR strategies.


Sim4Blocks aims to maximise the use of renewable energy at the block of buildings scale through demand response

The project

The growing share of variable renewable generation strongly increases the need for flexibility1 in the electricity system, which can be provided by flexible energy generation, demand side participation and energy storage systems.

While today only very large, mainly industrial, customers have participated in flexibility markets, SIMBLOCK proposes to develop new demand response (DR) services for smaller residential and commercial customers in blocks of buildings, to implement and test them in three European pilot sites and have the aggregator companies transfer successful results to further European countries.

Captions of the Sim4Blocks App implemented in Sant Cugat pilot site. 

The service consists of alerts via SMS that are activated based on the energy saving potential for the next 24 hours. In accessing the user can see the forecast of their electricity consumption based on their history and the optimal consumption in the same day. In this way, the user can see at what time of day it is more interesting to consume electricity, being able to move the peak consumption at the recommended time depending on the price of energy, the solar production of the building and the same profile of each user.

Pilot sites

The pilot sites located in Spain, Germany, and Switzerland, all feature blocks of buildings that have efficient energy supply and distribution systems, and existing IT/monitoring infrastructure. These IT systems can be accessed by the Project to enable user activation strategies, to generate and modify demand profiles for different profiles (i.e. residential, public, commercial) and to optimise the flexible operation of renewables (e.g. biogas, heat-pumps, wind, PV and solar-thermal), cogeneration and storage (e.g. thermal and electrical) for DR.


The main objectives of Sim4Blocks are:

  • To analyse and specify the technical characteristics of the demand flexibility that will enable dynamic demand response (DR). Quantification of DR impacts especially for customers in the residential or small commerce sector is a challenge that will be tackled by pilot site monitoring schemes and parametric simulation studies.
  • To evaluate the optimal use of this DR capability in the context of the market tariffs, RES supply fluctuations and user interaction. Innovative and fully automated modelling and optimisation services will be combined with big data analytics to provide the best real time and strategic DR actions. The user interface development and user activation programs deliver feedback and guarantee high user acceptance levels.
  • To develop and implement market access and business models for DR offered by building blocks with a focus on shifting power to heat and on optimizing the several available energy vectors already present in buildings. Business models for the new demand response services will be developed taking into account the role of pricing and cost effectiveness, current limitations and regulations, data policies, market barriers and stakeholder engagement.
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Sim4Blocks’ partners gathered at London for the project’s Steering Committee meeting 16-17 March 2020.




PROMUSA - Sant Cugat
Stadtwerke Schwäbisch Hall
HES SO - Haute Ecole Specialisee de Suisse Occidentale
UCD - University College Dublin
AIT - Austrian Institute of Technology
Centrica Business Solutions
Eifer - European Institute For Energy Research
EDF Energy R&D
Insight Publishers

This project has received funding from the European Commission through the HORIZON 2020 European Union funding for Research & Innovation programme.

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