Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation (established in October 2017) is a subsidiary of Toshiba Group, with its core business being the provision of energy-related systems and solutions. The partner organization for this project is the Grid Aggregation business unit of Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation, which uses AI technology to develop various prediction and scheduling systems, including demand prediction, renewable energy generation prediction, and JEPX market transaction price prediction. Based on these predictions, they have developed a “low-voltage virtual power plant platform” to formulate distributed energy resource (DER) scheduling strategies, equipment control, and profitability calculation.
As extreme weather conditions have become more severe in recent years, the demand for electricity and the accuracy of renewable energy generation predictions have both decreased. In order to balance supply and demand, power generators and providers must establish a highly flexible power source composition structure that can mitigate the imbalances caused by forecasting errors and reduce the risk of their business operation.
In the past, power generators and providers have been able to construct the optimal power source mix by building their own power plants or dispatching electricity through power wholesale markets. However, this has become difficult due to land acquisition and fuel procurement price volatility, while prices in the electricity wholesale market fluctuate greatly in response to market supply and demand, resulting in higher strategy adoption risk. Although the risk of user-side and self-owned device control is lower, the strategy still needs to adopt energy Internet of Things architecture and DER scheduling/control technology to be effective.
In addition, power generators and providers are responsible for balancing supply and demand one hour before electricity is delivered. However, the final responsibility for balancing supply and demand still lies with the electricity grid operator. The grid operator can use the auxiliary service market for resource scheduling, but the market still relies on a certain number of high-quality Resource Aggregators and Aggregator Coordinators to act as electricity suppliers in order to successfully obtain power dispatch.
To assist power generators, power providers, resource aggregators/coordinators, and power grid operators in implementing low-risk power scheduling strategies to solve the problem of supply and demand imbalance, Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation has developed a “low-voltage virtual power plant platform” to help target customers formulate and implement DER scheduling strategies.
Despite Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation having great software development technology, its “low-voltage virtual power plant” solution still relies on a stable, scalable, and price-competitive internet of energy (IoE) framework. The last mile of the connection must be finished in order to get energy data, which can be used as the basis for power dispatch control strategy, energy device control, and performance calculations.
As of June 2022, the client participated in the demonstration projects of various Resource Aggregators / Coordinators under the policy of “Demonstration Project for the Construction of a Virtual Power Plant that Utilizes Demand-Side Energy Resources (VPP Aggregation Project (需要家側エネルギーリソースを活用したバーチャルパワープラント構築実証事業費補助金)” of the Ministry of Economy. Through cooperation with NextDrive’s “Ecogenie+ Smart Living Services” solution, it provides the “Low-voltage Virtual Power Plant Platform” solution to target customers to help them determine resource scheduling strategies, and carry out validation on thousands of low-voltage users. After the demonstration ends, the client will further promote commercial services to target customers.
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