Solar and smart – that’s the future of modern energy supply. Decentralized photovoltaics installations and battery storage systems for domestic power supply are being combined in intelligent networks to provide balancing power to the public grid. Known as smart grids, these networks control and monitor the generation, storage, distribution and consumption of electricity. The power grid of the future will also include electric vehicles, both as consumers of energy and as storage devices.
In the German village of Schönau, for example, power companies are trying out a local energy management system. Using data from smart metering, the system connects decentralized energy producers with local users and regulates supply and demand. Photovoltaic systems, battery storage devices and controllable loads such as electric vehicles are all taken into account in order to optimize the on-site consumption of self-generated power. In the future, the power companies also want to integrate electric heat generation via heat pumps and heating elements into the smart grid.
Grid congestion is increasingly forcing photovoltaic power plants and wind farms to throttle production. Smart grids offer a solution by balancing renewable power generation forecasts with load forecasts and operating conditions on the grid. Grid operators expect that e-mobility in particular will lead to increased power consumption. Local digital grids can help avoid overloads in the low-voltage grid, for example by limiting the power supplied to home charging stations when overloads arise.
Digitalization, renewable energies and energy storage open up opportunities for flexible, regional and environmentally friendly power supply networks of the future. With a special exhibition space dedicated to smart grids, The smarter E Europe is showcasing innovative solutions from across Europe for intelligent energy supply from the grid.