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Gentlemen, Start your Smart Engines
Smart energy transfers responsibility for energy volatility to the end nodes, along with economic incentives to adjust to that variability.
After two years of work, the market interfaces of smart energy are
ready for development of the systems that will use them to begin. In
smart grid, we often refer to the grid and its end nodes. The end nodes
today are the commercial buildings, industrial sites, and residences
that today merely consume energy.
Smart energy transfers responsibility for energy volatility to the end
nodes, along with economic incentives to adjust to that variability.
Energy use has long been cyclical in aggregate, with summer afternoons,
especially, requiring far more energy than summer nights. The
capability for power generation has been controllable, to at least come
close to match this cyclical use. Renewable energy resources are not so
controllable, and today often produce peak power when consumers do not
need it. The growing mismatch of power supply and energy use is what
drives the creation of the economic incentives
With the price of energy rising, the value of those incentives to the owners and operators of the end nodes will soon grow. Building efficiency will help a building weather peak prices, but will not help the building take advantage of the low prices that come with peak supply. That is where the market interfaces of smart energy come in.
The first one that you will hear about is Energy Interoperation. The OpenADR alliance is building OpenADR 2.0 around the OASIS Energy Interoperation standard. Energy Interoperation defines patterns of market signals for exchanging information product price and availability. A smart building system will be able to query its supplier about the market rules, and then begin to bid into that market. Buildings will listen for program-based events (Demand Response or DR) through the same family of signals. Energy Interoperation is nearly done, and goes out for a second public review this month.
Of course, market signals don’t matter unless you can understand the
product being offered, and offer your own products to the market. Price
and Product for power markets are defined by the Energy Market
Information Exchange (EMIX) specification, which is currently in public
review. EMIX is defined in three schemas.
EMIX was built in tiers so it can support multiple energy markets. Other Energy distribution markets can use the same market constructs. Natural Gas markets can vary with pipe pressure and demand. District Energy thermal markets, including high pressure steam, low pressure steam and chilled water have similar needs. By defining schemas for each based on EMIX, just as POWER is based on EMIX, markets for these energy sources can be transacted over any Energy Interoperation-based system, including OpenADR. Such schemas are not part of EMIX 1.0, but they are already being discussed.
Underlying both these standards is a common communication of time and
interval-or what we call them together, the schedule. Production,
consumption, supply, and price, or buyer and seller have schedules
generated by their own means. WS-Calendar provides a common language
for discussing these schedules. This language is used in EMIX, and used
in Energy Interoperation. Developers of systems for vehicles and for
building systems are discussing using WS-calendar to exchange
information about their needs and use as well.
Participants form the largest software companies, who make the largest enterprise calendar systems are exploring the use of WS-Calendar as well. Because it is built upon iCalendar, there are scores of proprietary and open source implementations already in development. The Bedework Open Source calendar project is already demonstrating direct use of this specification.
Building systems must understand their own energy use, and how to change it to take advantage of these specifications. Sometimes the right thing to do is to increase energy use, to take advantage of low-priced power, to avoid its use later.
The specifications are relatively stable, and ready for demonstration
use. The companies that start now, will be the first to new national
markets that do not rely on customization for each territory.
Gentlemen, Warm up your coders and start your Smart Energy Engines….
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