Sonnen Launches Virtual Power Plant In Germany Using Energy Web Foundation’s Blockchain

Blockchain, News | March 16, 2020 By:

Energy storage and services company the sonnen Group has teamed with the Energy Web Foundation (EWF) to launch a new virtual power plant (VPP) in northeastern Germany.

The sonnen Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell within its New Energies division, is a manufacturer of smart energy storage systems and a pioneer of clean, decentralized and networked energy system technologies. With its virtual battery, which consists of digitally networked home storage systems, sonnen offers new and highly innovative energy services for network operators and customers. The company’s products are available in many countries and has offices located in Germany, Italy, Australia, the UK and the USA.

EWF is a global nonprofit that fosters value creation in the energy sector by building and promoting an open, decentralized software infrastructure built around blockchain technology. Last year, EWF launched the Energy Web Chain, the world’s first open-source, enterprise blockchain platform tailored to the energy sector. EWF’s technology roadmap has since grown to include the Energy Web Decentralized Operating System (EW-DOS), a “blockchain-plus” suite of decentralized solutions. EWF also grew the world’s largest energy blockchain ecosystem comprising utilities, grid operators, renewable energy developers, corporate energy buyers, and others.

In a press release, sonnen unveiled a new VPP in Germany that leverages the Energy Web Chain and the EW Origin suite of software development toolkits (SDK), which are both part of the Energy Web Decentralized Operating System. The goal of the VPP is to allow energy storage systems to absorb surplus wind energy in order to avoid curtailment of clean power.

“An application built using EW Origin matches forecasted wind energy oversupply with available storage capacity in the VPP,” the foundation said. “The network operator in northeast Germany reports the anticipated surplus energy. In response, sonnen’s VPP makes an offer to absorb some of that surplus. If the network operator accepts the offer, financial settlement occurs on the EW Chain using EW Dai, a stablecoin digital currency that mirrors conventional Dai on Ethereum. Settlement is essentially instant and nearly free, with the EW Chain built around negligible transaction costs.”

Jean-Baptiste Cornefert, Managing Director of sonnen eServices, said that with a flexibility market for renewable energies and the automatic exchange of supply and demand via the digital exchange ‘EW Origin,’ they are realizing the next step towards a smart grid that can deal much more flexibly with fluctuations from renewable energy.

“Virtual power plants such as those from sonnen are the technical building block for this power grid that has been missing up to now and can help to ensure that less green energy is lost,” Cornefert said.