VPS - Virtual Power Solutions


VPS - Virtual Power Solutions

1 - Global context of the challenge

Domestic and C&I consumers will have an active role in the energy systems of the future. They will not only procure tools to use energy more efficiently but also platforms to either share or sell their energy resources which will increase their resilience to face global threats like the Climate Changes. Virtual Power Solutions​ is delivering energy digitalization tools to empower energy consumers and optimize renewables. VPS is expert on digitalizing energy management for asset optimization and acceleration of decarbonization efforts of its customers, offering 360˚ energy management tools to all sectors with ‘digital twins’ and deploying Virtual Power Plants and advanced Flexibility tools.

2 - Challenge/Opportunity definition

Looking into how new energy conservation measures (ECM) are implemented in facilities (either translated to an optimization of the time-of-use or operation of an existing equipment or due to the install of a new and more efficient equipment), there is the need to measure and verify the energy savings and compare the achieved savings with the expected savings at design time. Measurement and verification is the required action to achieve that. It involves measuring, collecting, and analysing data in order to check the achieved savings. This can be automated using software (such as the VPS EMS), but still it can be a defying task when the environment (that affects consumption) is at a constant change (ex: outdoor temperature or variation the number of produced units in an industrial environment). In that context, only measuring is not enough, because it can reflect an incorrect savings number. To address this was created an International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol, that analyses measured savings data, and adjust other external conditions, but this is not done in an automated way.

3 - Why is it important?

There are projects with implemented ECM that are considered a failure, because have unclear results (or different than expected), that do not directly lower an energy bill. The main issue is that very often it's not the case. This problem gains more importance when there is an external capital investment on the project and there is an expectation regarding ROI and Payback period.
Directly measuring savings is difficult, because it means energy not used. Using the international protocol savings are calculated by comparing measured consumption before and after the implementation of ECMs, while considering adjustments for changes in external conditions (e.g. weather, facility occupancy, site production, etc.).
Without this approach, the comparison of an invoice or meter data unadjusted only shows over time a raw increase/decrease and discards other changes that may had impact on energy consumption.

4 - What do we want for the solution?

VPS aims for a model that enables the implementation of an automated approach to access savings of clients. Reporting savings should be possible in less that 10 minutes and currently can take days to calculate.
The goal is to have an approach that can be used in large and also applicable to smaller projects.

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