The power of many

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All about VPP

Webinars / Virtual Power Plant / VPP / Renewable Energy

How VPPs integrate renewables into the energy system

Wed., April 29 2020, 9:30 a.m. (UTC+2)

Higher shares of renewables in electricity mix require perfect coordination of their energy generation to provide a cost-efficient and secure electricity supply and guarantee a stable grid. Virtual Power Plants (VPPs) allow to aggregate thousands of electricity producers, consumers and storage units and to control them according to signals from the wholesale market and system operators. 

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Webinars / Virtual Power Plant / VPP / Business Model

VPP Business Models

Tue., April 21 2020, 3:30 p.m. (UTC+2)

Virtual Power Plants aggregate distributed energy resources (DER) in almost all parts of the world. However, they take different forms depending on the market environment and addresses different challenges of the transitioning energy industry. The webinar presents different Business Models renewable energy companies can adopt and shows how the same technology fundamentals can deliver different value propositions for different types of assets and market actors.

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Nods symbolize the grid of the algorithm of the Virtual Power Plant.
Energy Blog / Algorithm / Grid Stability / Power Grid / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

How Are Units in a VPP Selected to Provide Ancillary Services?

In a Virtual Power Plant, thousands of systems provide balancing services every day. But how exactly are the individual units selected for the provision of balancing energy? Which factors are taken into consideration?

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Business Model of a Power Aggregator
Energy Blog / Business Model / Flexibility / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

What’s the business model of a Virtual Power Plant (VPP)?

For a couple of years now, the role of the Virtual Power Plant has been established in the energy industry. Today, it is pretty clear what a Virtual Power Plant is and why it makes sense to network, forecast, optimize, and dispatch a fleet of coordinated distributed energy resources (DER) such as wind, solar, bioenergy, hydropower, batteries, electrolyzers, and many more. But how do you make money with a Virtual Power Plant? What’s the business case of a VPP operator, or to use a synonym, of an aggregator?

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The Russian energy sector analyzed.
Energy Blog / Decentralization / Demand Response / Energy Market / VPP

Next Stop: Russia

Our blog series reports on the electricity markets of the world. Our next stop is Russia – Tobias Weghorn, International Business Development Manager at Next Kraftwerke, explored the country’s VPP potential.

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Knowledge / Energy Exchange / Energy Trading / Knowledge / VPP

OTC trading

What is OTC trading?Definition

If a buyer and a seller execute a sales contract for a physical item, the seller hands the product over the counter to the buyer. This is the essence of "over the counter" or OTC trading. In power trading, no physical goods are exchanged, but the principle of a direct, over-the-counter trade for electricity is the same. These trades take place outside of power exchanges without intermediaries or clearing houses. In OTC trading, trading partners are in direct contact with each other or make use of a broker. The transactions themselves occur on trading platforms online or through brokerage companies. Agreements on trading volumes and pricing are reached individually and bilaterally among the parties, but contractual standards for simplification and risk mitigation are gaining acceptance. OTC trading is a common practice in the energy market, representing the largest volume of electricity market transactions in many countries. Conventionally-sourced power is more common for OTC trades than renewably-sourced electricity.

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Wind energy farm on an island to provide electricity off the grid.
Energy Blog / Demand Response / Power Grid / Renewable Energy / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

Renewable Energy Island – Part 2

In the second part of our series, we will talk about different concepts for Virtual Power Plants on islands and island groups for providing a sustainable and secure power supply.

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Windfarm in the country site on an island.
Energy Blog / Decentralization / Energy Market / Renewable Energy / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

Renewable Energy Island – Part 1

Somewhere in the big blue ocean, there lies an island that can serve as a blueprint for the approach to tackle the challenges of climate change with a self-sufficient supply through renewable energies.

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Knowledge / Business Model / Decentralization / Knowledge / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

Virtual Power Plant

What is a Virtual Power Plant?Definition

In a Virtual Power Plant, decentralized units in a power network are linked and operated by a single, centralized control system. Those units can be either power producers (e.g. wind, biogas, solar, CHP, or hydro power plants), power storage units, power consumers or power-to-X plants (such as power-to-heat and power-to-gas). When integrated into a Virtual Power Plant, the power and flexibility of the aggregated assets can be traded collectively. Thus, even small units get access to the lucrative markets (like the market for balancing reserve) that they would not be able to enter individually. Any decentralized unit that consumes, stores, or produces electricity can become a part of a Virtual Power Plant. 

Additionally to operating every individual asset in the Virtual Power Plant, the central control system uses a special algorithm to adjust to balancing reserve commands from transmission system operators and to grid conditions – just as a larger, conventional power plant does. Furthermore, the Virtual Power Plant can react quickly and efficiently when it comes to trading electricity, thus adjusting plant operations according to price signals from the power exchanges.

The market changes, the powerplants have to follow: Global energy markets are facing major changes. We move from a model with centralized electricity generation in power plants operated by large utilities towards a mix of decentralized and often renewable energy production in small facilities. Those small scale plants are typically owned by small companies or households, who become ‘prosumers’: consumer and producer at the same time. 

We experience a true paradigm shift. The further penetration of renewable energy generation challenges the conventional way of operating our electricity system. Business models have to be reinvented and our grids redesigned. The variability of renewable sources like sun and wind do not necessarily endanger the system balance as long as they are dealt with appropriately. And that is exactly where a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) comes in.

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Virtual Power Plants lead Energy Markets of the Future
Energy Blog / Demand Response / Energy Market / Renewable Energy / Virtual Power Plant / VPP

The dance of generation and demand

Flexibility is the defining principle of tomorrow’s electricity market: Helen Steiniger analyses the transition from inflexible concepts of the past to the dynamic electricity markets of the future.

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