The US Department of Energy (DOE) has decided to invest $1.05 million to different organizations that are in full development of blockchain-based platforms for energy management. This was recently announced by ComEd, one of the organizations benefited.
The big institutions are also paying close attention to blockchain. On this occasion, it was the United States Department of Energy (DOE) who allocated the grant to the largest energy company in Illinois: Commonwealth Edison (ComEd); the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech); the University of Denver and the software specialist BEM Controls, for the creation of an “energy internet that improves the energy management of buildings and the benefits for their occupants,” as noted in the ComEd publication.
According to the press release, this grant “provides funds to market a blockchain-based transactional energy platform developed by BEM Controls with DOE funds.” ComEd pointed out that the reason why BEM Controls chose blockchain for its transactional energy platform was “its recognized ability to guarantee security for a wide range of transactions.”
They stressed that blockchain technology is considered a “promising solution” for those energy companies that bet on systems with Distributed Energy Resources or DER, and that develop energy markets that include devices connected through the Internet of Things (IoT), in addition to innovative services.
The president and chief operating officer of ComEd, Terry Donnelly, made a series of statements regarding the investment. Among his words, he said that “energy management technology has the potential to have a very positive impact on the environments in which we live and work,” adding that “ComEd’s Grid of the Future laboratory will play an important role in the advancement of science in this field and will support our efforts to offer a first level experience for the client, ”he said.
On the other hand, the president of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering of the University of Denver, Dr. Amin Khodaei declared that it is the perfect time to unite revolutionary technologies that can make our future more sustainable with the arduous management of management and maintenance of electrical resources
Dr Khodaei said:
“Now is the time to develop and demonstrate the technologies that can make a more sustainable and resilient future possible.”
The electrical system has already started adopting Blockchain
During April, the United States Department of Energy was exploring the applications of blockchain technology to secure power plants. The investigations were being carried out in the National Laboratory of Energy Technology (NETL) of the DOE, which initiated the second phase of the electricity network security project with the Taekion company; in a research effort for which $ 1 million was allocated and aimed at “preventing cyber attacks in power plants by taking advantage of patent pending security applications, including those based on blockchain technology.”
A couple of months ago, it was also learned that the Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) of Mexico has considered using blockchain technology to “give more confidence to the activities of collective distributed generation of electric power.”
In July, it was learned that the Anglo-Dutch multinational hydrocarbons company “Shell Ventures”and the Japanese soybean company “Shosha Sumimoto Corporation Group” invested an undisclosed amount in the startup LO3 Energy, in order to develop a community energy platform based on blockchain technology. The initiative said that this financing will be of great help to boost LO3 Energy towards an optimal and safe commercialization of community energy networks based on blockchain.
It should be noted that LO3 Energy is an American firm that uses Ethereum technology for peer-to-peer energy trading, being the first to allow such peer-to-peer energy exchange “to overcome the challenge of integrating distributed energy resources ( DER) in the supply networks ”, through its Transagy transactional energy platform, according to the company.
The Japanese company Kyocera is also among the LO3 Energy partners. At the end of February both companies signed an agreement to test virtual power plants (VPP) based on blockchain technology, with a view to improving energy distribution.
Electricity companies such as the American Ameren Corporation, and the Japanese ENERES Co. Ltd, have also chosen to explore the use of blockchain technology to improve electricity distribution. Ameren Corporation announced in March a partnership with the Canadian company Opus One Solutions to evaluate the use of block chains in the electricity sector, as part of its commitment to innovations and clean energy; but they did not specify how they plan to use this technology.
On the other hand, the Japanese electricity company ENERES Co. Ltd. partnered with the Fujitsu company to test a pilot system that includes blockchain technology, for a transactional energy market based on surplus and electricity shortage. According to Fujitsu reports, the use of this technology implied an increase in efficiency by 40% compared to traditional methods.
Blockchain adoptions mean a step into the future no matter in what area it happens, however, the recognition of technology by basic service institutions (as in the case of electric power) speaks very well of this, as does the implementation in public and government agencies.