Sharing and exchanging energy as well as trading from local resources and fully automatically are discussed at great length within the energy sector. Over a period of three years, Fossil Free Energy Districts has developed a unique marketplace in which the automated trade of electricity, district heating and district cooling has both reduced environmental impact and increased flexibility.
In the pursuit of a fossil-free and renewable energy supply and increased energy security, we need new innovative technologies while using existing infrastructure more intelligently. At Chalmers Campus at Johanneberg Science Park in Gothenburg, the Fossil Free Energy Districts (FED) project has created a new and unique local marketplace where energy is traded automatically and locally with peripheral systems.
“The marketplace is truly one of a kind with electricity, heating and cooling integrated,” says Magnus Brolin, Manager of the Future Energy Systems focus area at RISE. “These systems traditionally live their own lives with their own properties and apply to different market conditions. They have not been viewed collectively before, but we have identified synergies through the FED project.”
Software matches supply with demand
The FED project was run by consortium of nine operators, where RISE developed the actual nucleus of the marketplace with Ericsson responsible for its implementation.
“The software links the various resources at Chalmers Campus such as the solar panels on the roof, heat storage, batteries, and the cogeneration plant, and matches the different devices’ supply with demand. This enables balance to be achieved in the system. The system also contained links to off-campus resources. The market chooses that which is most economical for the system and eco-friendly,” says Brolin.
The FED project has produced a very good understanding of the role the marketplace can play.
“The FED project has shown that a marketplace that automates the purchase and sale of electricity, heating and cooling can curtail the peaks and thus reduce fossil energy use. It does not only constitute newfound knowledge – we can already see indications of how FED is reducing environmental impact,” says Brolin.
All involved shared the same view and a will to get everything in place
Successful project thanks to good cooperation
The project ran over the 2016-2019 period and received a great deal of attention.
“FED is a very successful project. In three years, we’ve managed to make something from scratch – which often remains on the drawing board – and demonstrate it. One of the reasons it has gone so smoothly and worked so well is the good cooperation and the short starting distance. All contributors shared the same view and eagerness to get all the pieces in place to ensure the project’s success,” says Brolin.
Although the FED project has concluded, other projects, such as FlexiGrid, will utilise elements of the solution.
The Fossil Free Energy Districts project involved: City of Gothenburg, Johanneberg Science Park AB, Göteborg Energi AB, Business Region Göteborg AB, Chalmersfastigheter AB, Akademiska hus AB, Chalmers, Ericsson AB, RISE. The project was financed by UIA – Urban Initiative Actions.