The goal of the European Union (EU)-funded Project SmartCoDe is reducing the overall energy intensity while enabling residences and small commercial premises to profit from an open European electricity market. One of the conclusions of this workshop was that in order to meet the actual challenges on developing affordable smart local energy grids, investing in R&D for clean energy technologies is vital.
On the way to the EU’s objective of deriving 20 % of its energy from renewable resources by 2020, the first SmartCoDe-workshop showed that the world must de-carbonize its energy production and consumption. However, the last two centuries of unprecedented development in the world have improved the human condition enormously and at the same time this has resulted in continuous increase of green house gas emissions also reaching other limits of planetary boundaries: Fundamental, game-changing transformations are needed for a shift toward more sustainable development paths.
In his keynote Prof. Dr. Nebojsa Nakicenovic, from the Vienna University of Technology and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis of the Vienna Technical University, pointed out that energy systems technologies need to mesh with emerging innovations in energy networks and end use in direction of smart integration: "The emerging new energy systems require two complementary co-evolutions – one is technological and the other institutional. With new technologies and systems, new business models and institutional arrangements will emerge. All of these complementary and co-evolving transformations will require market, regulatory and behavioral changes." The transformational change toward more sustainable futures requires enhanced research, development and deployment (public and private) efforts as well as early investments to achieve accelerated diffusion and adoption of advanced energy technologies and systems: "The longer we wait to introduce these advanced technologies, the higher the required costs and emissions reduction will be as well as the 'lock-in' into the old structures", he concludes.
The SmartCoDe project aims to use electronic system level (ESL) design and verification techniques to devise a System-on-Chip (SoC) or System-in-Package (SiP) design together with an operating infrastructure concept that enables energy monitoring and control at the home appliance level – at a price that consumers can afford.
"A major issue is that renewable energy supplies are unpredictable. With renewable energy contributing an increasing percentage of the total energy supply, it will become a challenge to keep the power grid both stable and cost-efficient", explains Peter Neumann, SmartCoDe overall project coordinator at edacentrum. "Smart energy management in buildings and their environments can mitigate this problem." The SmartCoDe project is looking at the smart integration of local energy neighbourhoods and the grid, including local energy production (LEP) by small-scale distributed energy generation technologies such as wind or photovoltaic.
The workshop – the first of three between now and 2012 – presented not only on-going research in the area of energy forecasting but also actual issues like the hard- and software requirements to implement an automated energy management system. Also a general overview about the security in smart energy grids and security architecture of SmartCoDe network were provided. Since trust is fundamental to attract customers, the reasons for most known incidents were explained and analyzed. This led to a detailed examination of repeated vulnerabilities caused by software flaws, hardware weaknesses and inherited problems like hardware limitations. The summary demonstrated how these experiences affected the architecture of the SmartCoDe network.
Finally, the concept of a 'local energy resource cluster' was presented which consists of the following energy resources (consumers and producers):
- Locally available renewable energies, especially small-scale wind turbines and/or building-integrated photovoltaics.
- Locally available energy storages such as car batteries (plug-in hybrids, electric vehicles).
- Energy using products such as HVAC, electric lighting, consumer electronics, white goods, etc.
Round about 40 attendees took the opportunity to deepen their knowledge together with the experts from the eight SmartCoDe-partners coming from five European countries: Ardaco works on secure data transmission and secure communication. Ennovatis is specialized on energy management systems while Infineon is focussing on system integration and SoC/SiP. Quiet Revolution works on small-scale energy generation like wind turbines and energy forecasting. Tridonic is targeting lighting and building automation. Finally, the University of Novi Sad develops the energy management software while the Vienna Technical University is modeling and designing the wireless sensor network.
The conference proceedings are available free of charge for download at: https://www.fp7-smartcode.eu/events/ecw2010. If a paperback is required, a service charge of 40,-€ is due for payment.About SmartCoDe
For further information, please visit http://www.fp7-smartcode.euAbout edacentrum
For further information, please visit http://www.edacentrum.deedacentrum e.V.
Producing electricity during flight
20.09.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau
Solar-to-fuel system recycles CO2 to make ethanol and ethylene
19.09.2017 | DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
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