VPP - Virtual Power Plant
The VPP in the context of this work is a high level design tool based upon load aggregation of near real-time metered energy demand and generation data at building/apartment levels. Selected data is aggregated up to city level, or user defined and selected levels such as district, neighbourhood, low voltage electricity network, district heating network etc.
Figure illustrates the communication workflow between the VPP, CDSS and SCDB.
The VPP is to act as the background calculation engine to the CDSS, where the CDSS is to act as an interface to the VPP initiating user commands to the VPP such as grouping schemes, what-if simulations etc. The SCDB acts as an intermediate between the VPP and CDSS; access to common data and storage of VPP computed data.
The VPP also facilitates the option to model ‘what-if’ scenarios through simulation of additional distributed energy resources (DER), electricity storage, electric vehicles etc. at tool defined building and/or city/district level. This feature is in addition to load aggregation of near real-time metered energy demand and generation data at building/apartment levels within the VPP. What-if scenarios use historical building and meteorological metered data stored on the SCDB as a driver for simulating results, rather than forecasting ahead in time.
An example of a what-if scenario is the simulation of photovoltaic (PV) panels at building level. The what-if simulations are directed towards providing feedback to the user on the following type of question: If I installed ‘x’ renewable or low to zero carbon (LZC) technology to one or many buildings within a district, how much traditional energy in the sense could have been offset by installation of such technology? The user can analyse this information within the CDSS and opt to carry-out further what-if simulations.
Target users, city planners and utility companies, will be able to use the tool to gain an understanding of energy demand/generation at user defined and selected levels of interest ranging from high level city planning to the selection of individual buildings or user defined energy networks and so on. ‘What-if’ scenarios aid in future development and planning of cities.
DEVELOPMENT OF A VIRTUAL POWER PLANT (VPP) PROTOTYPE AND CASE STUDIES FOR THE USE OF ENERGY BALANCING ACROSS CITIES