Member voice - a live energy blockchain demonstration

This week's member voice comes from TOBLOCKCHAIN, sharing their experience in blockchain for energy through the development of PowerToShare.
Published: Fri 29 Jun 2018

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Today’s energy networks and information systems haven’t been designed for the energy transition. Our energy system is decentralizing but the current structure is still organized in a central and top-down manner. There are fixed contracts between large energy providers and their customers, with little or no room for these customers to play an active role themselves.

In a decentralized renewable energy market, it should be possible for customers to exchange energy data and execute energy transactions directly between each other. For example, they want to sell their surplus of generated renewable energy to peers or share it with community members. Decentralized green energy sources should be registered, verified and certified. People also need more insights into their energy usage to actively control their behaviour. To make that possible in the near future, we will need a new blockchain powered digital data infrastructure. A blockchain infrastructure that settles transactions even on a per kWh basis in a secure, transparent and cost-efficient way.

The current infrastructure just don’t support this. This is what PowerToShare offers. It is an energy efficient open consortium blockchain network that powers various energy applications. As part of our live energy blockchain demonstration, a number of energy applications have been developed and demonstrated on top of the PowerToShare blockchain network. The network itself is connected to a variety of energy systems at the Green Village to prove its technical readiness.

Energy applications demonstrated in the live energy blockchain demonstration

In the live energy blockchain demonstration, the following applications are being demonstrated:

  • Login with Self Sovereign Identity

This app allows an end-user to login to energy services with his own ‘self-sovereign identity’. By using blockchain technology, the end-user keeps full ownership and control over his identity information.It is not kept with a central party

  • Mandate control

With this application customers can easily control which energy market players have access to their data and for which purposes they can use this data.

  • Energy Preference control

Using this application an end-user can adjust the settings for his own energy preferences. For example, he can set the priorities as follows: 1) locally generated renewable energy 2) renewable energy from other sources and 3) any other energy source.

  • Proof of Origin certification

This application transparently registers and guarantees the (renewable) origin of all energy received. The proof of origin can be used in creating new green energy certificates which have a defined market value.

  • Energy Flexibility control

The flexibility app allows an end-user to inform energy producers within decentralised networks about his ability to be flexible in his energy usage. With more flexible energy users, local energy generation and usage can be balanced in a far better way.

  • Energy Asset register

This application provides a transparent and reliable registration of renewable energy sources and their owners.

The Green Village energy demo environment

The six applications mentioned, are all deployed and demonstrated at the Green Village test environment. The Green Village is an initiative of Delft University of Technology and Stichting Green Village. The platform is supported by the European Regional Development Fund, the Province of South-Holland, the municipality of Delft, Alliander, Gasterra, and many others.

Goal of the Green Village is to accelerate the development and implementation of sustainable innovations. The Green Village does this by bringing together everyone who needs to be involved – scientists and engineers, businesses, the public, and government – at an inspiring place where innovations can be developed, tested and demonstrated. It is an experimental real-life setting, a true living lab at Delft University of Technology that is open to anyone.

Inside the Green Village, our PowerToShare demo is integrated with a number of subsystems. The blog image provides a conceptual overview of the demo. The generic PowerToShare Energy Blockchain Network supports various smart contracts and can be connected to energy market players like Energy Service Providers and System Operators.

For the demo, the blockchain network is connected to the subsystems at the Green Village via the local IoT infrastructure. On top of the blockchain network 6 applications have been developed for the demonstration.

Important step towards operational deployment

So, for the first time we were able to connect our PowerToShare solution to a real working environment. With multiple technical systems, connected via the Internet of Things. We were able to develop the full IoT integration with these devices at the Green Village.

All systems are connected to the blockchain which guarantees authenticity, immutability, integrity, provenance and time stamping for sensor data. As such, it is a major milestone on our route from the initial prototype towards the final product. Curious contact TOBLOCKCHAIN.