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National Information Processing Institute

Human-Technology Interaction

E-balance - balancing energy production and consumption in energy efficient smart neighborhoods

E-balance will provide solutions increasing energy efficiency in the local neighborhood and smart cities. Sociological studies combined with the latest technological solutions will help create an integrated electronic information system.

The project is funded within the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission, with a budget of 5 180 056 eur. It is implemented in a consortium of 11 organizations from 5 EU countries. Poland is represented by the Laboratory of Interactive Technologies within the National Information Processing Institute. The project is monitored by IHP GmbH - Innovations for High Performance Microelectronics. The work within the project will take 42 months (October 2013 - March 2017).

The study will be conducted in three markets (Polish, Dutch and Portuguese). Dutch and Portuguese markets are mature in the respect of energy efficiency. Poland is an emerging market with development perspectives. On the basis of research, analyses and reviews of previous systems, a functional characteristics and technical specifications of the new tool will be defined: an e-balanced electronic information system consistent with the requirements and expectations of its potential users, the requirements of the market and legal aspects.

Systematic data collection and analysis will lead to the creation of algorithms for energy management at different levels of the power microgrid. The statistical model created on the basis of information about the weather, energy consumption and production as well as patterns of consumer and prosumer behavior will enable testing of the new system using real data. The planned real life tests of the system in specially designed housing estates (local neighbourhoods) in Bronsbergen (Netherlands) and Alliander (Portugal) are an important element of the project.

A key element of the work is to create an electronic information system for power management at the level of individual farms and smart local neighborhood network (for local consumption, production and storage of energy). There will be two modules: a communication module for intelligent home appliances and networks, and a technology module for the sensors, gateways, routers, etc. The challenge will be to ensure complete system stability, self-healing, privacy of the users and the energy security of the households. The system is to maximize the use of energy resources produced locally from renewable sources before demanding supplies from the external network. Energy management is to be tailored to the needs of individual users, including their preferences, behavior patterns and the availability of energy, allowing for the creation of a most cost-effective model of energy use. The system architecture is to be decentralized and multi-level in character.

All work plans take into account the various participants of energy generation, transmission and consumption process, including manufacturers, network operators, distributors, consumers and prosumers. In order to define the benefits of the system for each of the groups, all relationships between the stakeholders will be examined. The consortium hopes to create a system which, after successive expansions, can be adapted on a broader scale, for example in the form of a small smart city. An instruction manual to be prepared at the end of the project, describing its findings and recommendations, will facilitate such adaptation.

Project team:

  • Krzysztof Krejtz - Head of the Laboratory
  • Wojciech Ciemniewski - Senior Research Specialist, Coordinator
  • Jarosław Kowalski - Research Specialist
  • Tomasz Szmidt - Research Specialist
  • Dominik Chrząstowski-Wachtel - Junior Specialist, Analysis