Blog #4

Open Source solutions for Grid Automation

Authors: Claudia Battistelli, Antonello Monti,
Institute for Automation of Complex Power System (ACS), E.ON Energy Research Center (RWTH Aachen University)

The complexity of today’s and future power systems calls for tools that are suited for data-driven monitoring, control and optimization at a large scale. Power systems need to be reliable, manageable, resilient, safe, predictable, and affordable, and in the management of these systems in the modern era, the role of ICT and digitalization are increasingly important. The Institute for Automation of Complex Power Systems (ACS) at RWTH Aachen University covers interdisciplinary research areas to take into account interdependencies between electrical and thermal networks as well as towards ICT infrastructure, and is specialized in the development of innovative tools with adequate simulation capabilities to support the analysis of challenges within the energy networks of the future. Recent examples of these tools are the two open source platforms SOGNO and PLATONE

SOGNO: Service Oriented Grid for the Network of the Future

SOGNO is a cloud platform of turnkey services that implement next generation data-driven monitoring and control. By using the upcoming 5G mobile network standard, these services will feature low latency and high availabilityy. An Open API will enable third parties to market their services in the SOGNO eco-system creating further market growth. A complete version of the SOGNO platform will be developed and tested in the RWTH Laboratory. The reference implementation will be connected to the real time modelling infrastructure of the laboratory to provide complete full cases of test. The model used by the real time simulation will be validated using the measurement data of the field trials, which will provide all the necessary information to tune the RWTH setup to be a very reliable representation of the physical trials running in parallel. The models will run on the advanced RTDS installation in RWTH and will be tested also on the new real-time power system simulator under development in RWTH. The power system simulations will be connected through a dedicated base-station from Ericsson to a live 5G network so that also the communication element will be tested.

PLATONE – PLATform for Operation of distribution Networks

PLATONE platforms are an extension of SOGNO, aiming at implementing concepts and approaches that can increase the observability of renewable energy resources and less predictable loads while exploiting their flexibility, with the use of block chain techniques and the simulation of market mechanisms. Together with a consortium of 11 partners from Belgium, Germany, Greece and Italy, ACS will develop several advanced management platforms to unlock grid flexibility and to realize an open and non-discriminatory market, linking users, aggregators and operators. Fully respecting the existing regulatory framework, this layered set of platforms will allow the needs of local system operators, aggregators and end users to be met. A blockchain based platform, acting as the access layer to generators’ and customers’ flexibilities will break traditional access barriers by providing certified measures to all the players. In conjunction, certified data and signals will be used for an innovative DSO platform to locally maintain system integrity, fostering confidence in flexibility operations. An upper layer will implement a new concept of blockchain-based open market platform to link the local system to the transmission system operators’ (TSO) domains and enhance the overall system cost and efficiency. The platforms will be tested in three large pilots in Europe and analysed in cooperation with a large research initiative in Canada.