Renewable energy sources offer unpreceded opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the detrimental effects of climate change. But, some challenges remain to be solved before their full benefits can be reaped. The main one relate to the intermittency of their electricity supply which does not match energy demand and can lead to poor quality of electricity supply, grid stability problems and subsequently curtailment of their generation.
Facilitate the full integration of renewable energy in the electricity grid
Global coordination of all energy networks (electricity, gas, heat) and
the different technologies for energy storage and conversion
Energy conversion and storage has been touted as a very promising solution to all aforementioned issues. PLANET will develop a holistic Decision Support System for utilities (DSO), policy makers and network operators. It will aid them to leverage innovative energy conversion in alternative carriers & storage technologies in order explore, identify, evaluate and quantitatively assess optimal grid planning and management strategies for future energy scenarios that target full energy system de-carbonisation.
Moreover, a robust analysis of the possible synergies between electricity, gas and heat networks will be carried out by creating simulation models for the integration between energy networks and conversion/storage technologies, e.g. power-to-gas, power-to-heat and virtual thermal energy storage. Application of the developed tools in two different test cases in Italy and France will showcase their benefits and also reveal potential grid stability issues and effective countermeasures.
However, the models to network reinforcement and use of conversion and storage assets within the PLANET DSS will only provide a theoretical output. The consortium also intends to explore new business models that allow network operators to own and operate storage and conversion assets.
The PLANET solution is based on five core activity lines with several complementary activities supporting them
The main activities include:
1. The modelling of conversion/storage technologies in order to enable planning, management and operation tools to properly account for their expected impact upon real deployment in the field. These technologies include:
Centralised and Local Power-to-Heat (P2H)
Combined Heat and Power (CHP)
Thermal Storages: Traditional Thermal Storages (TTS) or Phase Change Material Thermal Storages (PCMTS)
Virtual Energy Storage (VES)
Model of Buildings
2. The simulation of the integration between electricity, gas and heat networks models, with conversion/storage technologies models, in order to understand how these conversions can affect network stability, reliability and responsiveness;
3. The development of a holistic Decision Support System (DSS) that enables multi-grid operational planning and management taking into account synergies and energy flows between the electricity, gas and heat networks.
4. Policy and market model impact assessment and exploration. Definition and promotion of proposals - punch-lists - for standardisation bodies
5. An activity of exploration and investigation of novel roles and business models