The technological core of the Virtual Power Plant
The control system collects all the information transmitted to us by the Next Boxes from every unit and the electricity system. It is administered exclusively by our own system engineers. With zhe help the control system, the Virtual Power Plant forms an intelligent network of thousands of electricity producing and electricity consuming systems. These include for example thermal, biogas, wind and solar power plants. The central control system controls each asset within the VPP – starts the unit and shuts them down according. This all happens within the owner#s restrictions of course. Within these contracted boundaries, we let your installation produce and/or consume energy when the price is best for you (demand-driven supply or demand response). .
The control system receives all information transmitted by the Next Boxes of each connected asset as well as the grid information. All communication is 100 percent machine-to-machine (M2M) communication. When the information is received by the control system, the data is re-authenticated by a router cluster (of course including a firewall), decrypted and stored accordingly. Of course we faciliate a redundant server infrastructure with two independent sites. If one of the servers fails, its counterpart takes over automatically. These security measures enforce the VPP against different types of failures (e.g. failures within the power grid, in the connecting line between the servers or in the servers themselves). This way, we ensure a fully operational Virtual Power Plant.
The control system stores all the data needed to calculate the ideal operation schedules for electricity producers and consumers. These are for example:
- Current feed-in
- Operational status of the asset
- Performance range for balancing energy
- Gas or heat storage
- Current temperature (for example in a cold store)
- Water levels (for example for an industrial pump)
With the optimization algorithms developed by our system engineers together with our partners, we generate the the schedules for each of the aggregated assets, which will be transmitted to the control system. The control system thus ensures that operators utilize the flexibility of their system in the most profitable way. As a result, the power plants always produce only the quantity of electricity currently required by the grid. And by using this mechanism, flexible electricity consumers such as industrial pumps can adjust their consumption to the electricity market, by using electricity at times, when it is cheapest and overall demand is low. Even plants with relatively low flexibility can be valorised this way. All of this happens within the safe operating range, you will set for your plant. In addition, our control system provides power grid stabilization.