The 13-partner RealValue consortium, led by Glen Dimplex, installed smart electric thermal storage systems (SETS) in approximately 750 properties throughout the 36-month study.
Believed to be one of the largest pilot studies of the current BRIDGE Horizon 2020 Smart Grid and Energy Storage projects, RealValue completed installations in homes, commercial premises and public buildings in three countries – Ireland (550) Germany (150) and Latvia (50).
The data and customer engagement research have shown that smart electric thermal storage technology has the potential to transform how consumers use and store energy, in the form of heat, in homes and buildings
Explaining the physical and academic elements of RealValue, Rowena McCappin, Project Director at Glen Dimplex, stated, “Having the entire electricity value chain involved in RealValue was of the utmost importance and facilitated a 360-degree overview of the potential for smart electric thermal storage.
“We fitted properties with smart electric thermal storage space and water heating devices, plus smart plugs, sensors, smart meters and gateways. Using these physical demonstrations, combined with advanced ICT and innovative modelling techniques, RealValue has proven that an aggregated population of SETS can bring benefits to all market participants.”
The RealValue project’s findings included:
The findings suggest there is potential for smart electric thermal storage throughout parts of Europe where there is need for more flexible demand in systems that rely increasingly on renewable generation.
It was discovered that in Ireland and Germany the indicators of success were most promising due to high shares of wind power generation and relatively low shares of pumped/reservoir hydropower and interconnector capacity.
The RealValue project has shown that decentralized smart electric thermal storage systems can be successfully linked to the energy markets, so that renewable electricity is integrated better into the energy system.
The RealValue consortium is a unique collaboration between public, private and academic institutions. Its members are: beegy, EirGrid, The Environmental Change Institute (University of Oxford), ESB Networks, The German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), Glen Dimplex Heating and Ventilation Ireland, Glen Dimplex Deutschland, Intel, MVV, Riga Technical University, SSE Airtricity, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and University College Dublin.
Photo L-R: Mark O’Malley, Chief Scientist, Energy Systems Integration & Senior Research Fellow, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, USA; Henning Häder, Manager – Energy Policy, Climate and Sustainability, eurelectric; Rowena McCappin, Project Director, Glen Dimplex Heating & Ventilation; Neil Stewart, CEO, Glen Dimplex Heating & Ventilation; and Patrick Clerens, Secretary General, European Association for the Storage of Energy (EASE)