Modular smart grid business parks
The Modienet consortium designed a development method for smart grids. This will ensure efficient distribution of all energy generated locally by wind turbines, solar panels, biomass boilers or biomass CHP plants in the A1 business park in Deventer.
The development method is already being deployed in existing business parks to align energy supply and demand.
Modular smart grids will make it possible to efficiently scale up the energy supply of business parks in the future.
Modienet went through a difficult period when it proved businesses were not interested in establishing premises at the new Greenfield business park in Deventer. But the consortium persevered with the development of their system concept for the application of smart grids in area development.
The result was the Modienet method. “The system is based on five themes: technology, organization, legal, economic and ICT,” says Leon Straathof of Cofely.
This varies from the right location for the grid cables and coordination between the participating businesses to choosing an ICT infrastructure and installing flexible energy systems. The method is not carved in stone; the smart grid can be adapted to the requirements of the stakeholders and the energy demand.
Existing business parks were also involved in the project in order to be able to run tests in the pilot phase.
We have completed the development phase and are ready to implement in the cities Duiven, Heerlen and Nijmegen. In Duiven we are considering how businesses can be connected to the energy grid. Currently, kilometers of cables have to be installed for each new business, while instead you could align supply and demand with neighboring businesses. We hope to achieve this with the Modienet method.
The development of a modular smart grid for a new, energy-neutral business park based on smart power grids.
Issues needed to be answered:
- How can we construct a modular and smart medium voltage grid that can adapt with the growth of the industrial park?
- How can we link locally generated renewable electricity to mostly process-based heating and cooling installations?
- How can we manage and combine fluctuating energy flows, energy buffers and energy prices in a smart grid?
- How can we encourage end users to use smart applications for energy supply and consumption?
- What are the legal opportunities for and hindrances to dynamic interaction between grid operators, energy producers and end users?
Why they acted?
Efficient distribution of all energy generated locally by wind turbines, solar panels, biomass boilers or biomass CHP plants in the A1 business park in Deventer.
We have gained insight into what needs to be done to make it work and so we are continuing with our plan to generate local and decentralised energy in Deventer.
Eight businesses have since displayed interest, now that the business park is accessible via a tunnel under the railway. So the setting still offers opportunities for us. Because we have been building from scratch, we will be able to use the flexibility of the future businesses in the park to the best effect.
We now have our own permanent trial program where we will be able to test and implement innovations in the coming years.
Various business parks are interested in our method. We are searching for new partners. The phase of knowledge sharing has only just started. We did learn a lot and invested a lot of money. As pilot project ambassadors, we now need to join forces and share the lesson we have learned, for a better world.
The pilot project approached the ACM (Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets) to talk about the regulatory hindrances. There are two wind turbines in Deventer that we wanted to connect to the same medium voltage grid as the business park.
The law requires a separate substation for this, but this would mean the wind energy would only reach the businesses via a detour. Modienet wants this to be done differently, which is why we are talking with the ACM to see if the legislation can be changed.
If you succeed in convincing people then this gives you a great boost of energy. But we aren’t doing it only for ourselves; we want other pilot projects to break through in this area too.
As long as the legislation is inflexible, then there is no value in a flexible energy supply. This should be the focus of any new pilot projects: how can you generate value for the business community from flexibility? In fact, this needs to be arranged before new pilot projects are started.
Leon Straathof – Cofely
Phone +31 (0) 18 660 62 00
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