News

06/12/2016 - Reference Group meeting in Brussels

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In the scope of the activities of international project FutureFlow, a Reference Group meeting was organized in Brussels.

Mr. Carlo Sabbeli, Chair of ENTSO-E Research & Development Committee opened the meeting. Among the representatives of ENTSO-E Governing bodies, also Mr. Kjell Arne Barmsnes, Convener WG AS ENTSO-E, responsible for solutions development inside ENTSO-E organization, was also present.

Introduction of the international project FutureFlow to the TSO representatives was done by the oordinator of the FutureFlow project Uroš Salobir (ELES). The key elements of the project, which will have a strong influence in the field of real-time balancing of power systems and increases energy integration between the countries of Europe were presented by Zoran Vujasinović (EKC) and dr. Matjaž Dolinar (ELES). A strong intersection of contents of FutureFlow project and current activities in the ENTSO-E organization , which was confirmed during the meeting, triggered an agreement on long term cooperation between the project and ENTSO-E organization.

10 - 12/10/2016 - FutureFlow project presented at RSEEC Conference in Bucharest

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FutureFlow team from Transelectrica and EKC presented the basic concept of the Future Flow project, at Regional SEE Conference 2016, in Bucharest, Romania.

At the dedicated Conference session, called “Future Flow: Balancing energy exchange concept tailored to congested borders”, in front of the 50 visitors mainly electricity experts from Romania, Zoran Vujasinovic (EKC), Nebojsa Jovic (EKC), and Doina Ilisiu (TEL), presented the FutureFlow overall project, target model for Balancing and expected influences of the project to the perspective development of Romanian Balancing market.

The presentation was followed by the intensive discussion with the visitors, especially those from Transelectrica and OPCOM.

19/02/2016 - ELES appointed as Coordinator of the FutureFlow Project

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ELES has been appointed as the coordinator of a four-year research project, worth 13 million euros, which will be funded by the European Horizon 2020 Programme. 12 partners from eight European countries, among them four system operators, research institutions, technology companies and two electricity traders, are involved in the FutureFlow International Research Project. All companies are leaders in their field with regard to technologies and services provided to their consumers. The FutureFlow Programme was today presented by the ELES’ experts to the representatives of the diplomatic corps of countries involved in the Project and the professional public at Vila Podrožnik. At the outset, the guests were addressed by Mr. Karl Erjavec, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia.

Co-organisation of today’s presentation is in fact the result of good cooperation between ELES and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs since energy is increasingly an integral part of foreign policy dicussions. FutureFlow is an important international project, which opens doors to cooperation between the countries, companies and scientific institutions« stressed Mr. Erjavec, the Minister, in his opening speech and stressed his aspiration that scientific results, brought by the FutureFlow Project, would also be applied in the world economy.

The FutureFlow Project will expand the scope of the so-called secondary frequency control from the generation also to consumption, and will facilitate international implementation of such activity. The partners in the FutureFlow Project will thus explore new solutions for balancing the electricity system and for managing the flows in the European electricity network. For example, if the unforeseen difference between the cumulative generation and cumulative offtake occurs in Slovenia, the FutureFlow Project will make it possible that advanced consumers from Slovenia or any other country, such as Hungary or Romania, get around this problem. Advanced consumers, addressed by the FutureFlow Project, will be able to increase or decrease their consumption in a few seconds and thereby carry out functions that are today largely performed by traditional hydro or thermal power plants using fossil fuels.

The FutureFlow Project thus provides a key breakthrough for an active participation of consumers in the most demanding processes in the electric power systems and thereby reduces their cost of electricity and reduces CO2 emissions and the countries’ dependence on fossil fuels.

The whole FutureFlow Project solution will be unique and will provide ancillary services of the highest quality from alternative sources of reserve, that is to say in the consumption management and distributed generation. Within the Project the experts will seek breakthrough solutions for the integration of electricity consumers in the most demanding processes in the power system. They will study the organisational and technical aspects and test the proposals in a pilot testing environment.

As pointed out by Mr. Alexander Mervar, M.Sc., ELES’ CEO, »the FutureFlow Project is developing a new scheme of cooperation between companies in the electric power system, which intervenes very deeply in the current scheme and changes business models, information flows and energy flows. Therefore, the Project is blurring the boundaries between countries in the field of real-time balancing of power systems and increases energy integration between the countries of Europe. This will allow advanced consumers and distributed renewable sources of generation to ensure the stability of the system as never before, i.e. with the assistance of the FutureFlow Project.«

As a development project FutureFlow will not remain only at the level of scientific contributions since the prototype solutions will also be the result of Project work, which will allow industry to use said results in the real economy immediately after completion of the Project.

Owing to all the aforementioned breakthrough solutions and the breach of the gap between the Project’s objectives and today’s environment, the Project would not exist without the EU funding, provided by the European Community under the Horizon 2020 Programme and which fully finances the Project.

27 – 28/01/ 2016 - Project kick-off meeting

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The FutureFlow kick-off meeting took place in Ljubljana where all 12 Consortium partners from 8 European countries, the Project Officer from European Commission Mrs. Mariana Stancheva and representative from ELES CEO Office gathered to launch the project activities. The meeting was led by Mr. Uroš Salobir, Project Coordinator from ELES, who expressed his optimism and eagerness for enabling renewable sources and consumers to contribute to electricity grid stability as never before.

In the meeting the consortium partners reviewed the project plan of the 4-year project and defined main priorities for the year 2016. The preparation of technical specifications and business models, specifications and studies that are essential for prototyping pilot platforms represent the main challenges for the coming year.

The FutureFlow will link interconnected control areas of four TSOs of Central-South Europe (ELES, Slovenia; APG, Austria; MAVIR, Hungary; and TRANSELECTRICA, Romania) which today do face increasing challenges to ensure transmission system security. The growing share of renewable electricity units has reduced drastically the capabilities of conventional, fossil-fuel based means to ensure balancing activities and congestion relief through redispatching. There is a need to face future balancing and network security challenges with the help of a more intensive and joint approach at regional level. The project, as recently approved under the horizon 2020 framework of the European Commission, proposes research and innovation activities to validate that consumers and distributed generators can be put in a position to provide balancing and redispatching services in addition to conventional units, within an attractive business environment.

Consortium partners have agreed to jointly explore the combination of two routes to provide solutions to such problems through a unique regional cooperation:

  • The design of a regional cross-border techno-economic cooperation scheme: it is tailored to ensure the participation of advanced commercial and industrial consumers, prosumers and distributed renewable generators in the provision of advanced ancillary services in TSO environments with limited flexibility options.
    • The development and pilot testing of a comprehensive prototype IT platform and the associated economic model(s) to support this cooperation scheme.

The research and innovation activities involve real energy market players (between 20 and 40 MW of the flexible balancing power services expected to be made available in the control areas of the four TSOs), this in view of:

    • Prototyping of innovative flexibility aggregation platforms within all four control zones,
    • Prototyping of a regional IT platform enabling access of these flexibility aggregation platforms to the international markets,
    • Enabling optimization of relevant functionalities within the TSO environments from the regional perspective,
    • Pilot testing of these platforms and connections, based on a set of progressively ambitious use cases involving real electricity market players.
    • An ex-post impact analysis is proposed to deliver recommendations for the scaling-up and replication of the most promising use cases.

Besides FutureFlow consortium partners the knowledge and experience will be exchanged with external stakeholders as well via the:

– Advisory Board encompassing research experts, consumers associations, RES and conventional generators associations, retailers, aggregators and regulators to address the critical research questions, the solutions developed the investigated use cases and the scaling up or replicability potential of the prototypes.
– Reference Group of TSOs, which aims at dealing specifically with TSOs issues regarding for instance the links between the FutureFlow project and the Network Code on Electricity Balancing implementation.

Both bodies, the Advisory Board and Reference Group of TSOs have already been established, however new members are warmly welcome.