Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Open software platform helps to save energy

13.08.2010
Starting 2011, energy suppliers will be obligated to offer variable power prices. A new energy management software platform will enable customers in future to opt for fl exible electricity rates, so that they can purchase power at times when it is available more cheaply.A further advantage is better utilization of the power grid.

Faced with rising electricity and heating costs, more and more consumers are opting to save energy, and now the government is beginning to help them. As from 2011, energy suppliers will be required to offer electricity at variable rates under the German Energy Act (EnWG § 40,3).

The idea behind the new law is simple: variable rates should encourage people to make a conscious effort to control their consumption. This is where the new open software platform will come into its own in future, helping electricity consumers to handle the new fl exible rates and make their energy consumption more intelligent. The OGEMA (Open Gateway Energy Management Alliance) Framework was developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy System Technologies IWES in Kassel. It is a freely available Java-based, opensource platform for energy management that links both consumers and producers of energy to the control centers of the grid operators and power suppliers. Via a display, customers will be able to monitor a variable electricity price and wait for times when rates are lower in order to start their dishwashers for instance. »Variable rates allow demand for electricity to be steered. When grid utilization levels are low, electricity can be offered at lower rates. This makes it lucrative, for example, for consumers to run their washing machines at night. Flexible pricing is an incentive to gradually shift power consumption to times when there is an oversupply of wind energy. After all, with the growing trend towards to renewable energy sources it is becoming ever more important to adapt one‘s consumption to suit the supply.« That is how Dr. Philipp Strauß, engineer and division director at IWES, explains the concept behind the software.

But nobody really wants to spend time checking up on electricity prices several times a day, which is why the researchers responsible for the OGEMA Framework developed a software program called BEMI (Bidirectional Energy Management Interface) that relieves consumers of this very task. The software automatically controls appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, heat pumps and air-conditioning. But OGEMA programming is not just the domain of the researchers: True to the principle of other open-source projects such as Linux, all developers are free to design software for the platform, thus implementing their ideas for the automated and more effi cient use of energy. »Currently, there is no open system for the home automation fi eld that enables different manufacturers to develop dedicated apps,« says Dr. David Nestle, IWES group manager, underlining the special feature of the OGEMA Framework.

In order to continue developing the concept and making it better known, the IWES launched the OGEMA Alliance this summer, which a number of companies, such as Mannheim-based energy supplier MVV and solar energy wholesaler Entrason, have already joined. »Our hope is that, within a short space of time, numerous applications will arise to meet the needs of private households and small businesses,« says Nestle. One conceivable innovation is an app that adapts the operation of electrical appliances to the power generation pattern of a household‘s own photovoltaic system or that coordinates individual room heating to suit the consumer‘s daily routine.

At the moment, researchers are working on the fi rst version of the OGEMA-software, which will be available later this year as a gratis download: An fi eld test will be carried out as part of the E-energy projects »Modellstadt Mannheim« and the EU-sponsored SmartHouse/SmartGrid. Initially, the use of the system will be tested in 100 households, with a further fi eld test involving 1500 customers planned for next year.

Dr.-Ing. David Nestle | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.iwes.fraunhofer.de
http://www.fraunhofer.de/en/press/research-news/2010/08/open-software-platform-helps-to-save-energy.jsp

Further reports about: Alliance IWES OGEMA Wind Energy energy source renewable energy source

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Large-scale battery storage system in field trial
11.12.2017 | FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz-Institut für Informationsinfrastruktur GmbH

nachricht New test procedure for developing quick-charging lithium-ion batteries
07.12.2017 | Forschungszentrum Jülich

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

Im Focus: Virtual Reality for Bacteria

An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications

Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...

Im Focus: A space-time sensor for light-matter interactions

Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.

The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

PhoxTroT: Optical Interconnect Technologies Revolutionized Data Centers and HPC Systems

11.12.2017 | Information Technology

Large-scale battery storage system in field trial

11.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>