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Eljun + Chalmers = sustainable energy development



Since Eljunstarted collaborating with Chalmers University of Technology, both sides have accumulated heaps of valuable insights from each other. And the flow of knowledge between us continues as Eljun’s Energy Club develops.


When Eljun’s journey began, it was not for nothing that we connected with Chalmers University of Technology (Chalmers). Chalmers has a whole super team devoted to developing technical and market solutions for smart Integrated Energy Systems (IES) of renewables that use Energy Management Systems (EMS) (more on this later). Chalmers are also a part of a global network that studies and develop these things in different countries and settings. Previously, Chalmers has developed IES and EMS in studies on ‘energy hubs’ in urban smart apartment buildings. What Chalmers now wants to know, is how IES and EMS can function in rural areas as well. Whereas Eljun wants to absorb as much knowledge as possible on IES and EMS to enhance our Energy Club project, which starts with the local energy producers of rural areas. And so, Eljun and Chalmers have found a perfect match in each other.

Or as Eljun’s CTO & Co-founder Tore Stenbock says: "It's a no-brainer to open our digital platform ‘The Energy Club’ to a collaborative project with Chalmers University, as it will bring cutting-edge research and development on energy management optimization to our users. We look forward to exploring together with Chalmers what the future of sustainable energy management system will look like."

Tools to transform energy systems in the countryside

The collaboration with Chalmers goes under the project name ‘Eljun - Smart Farmer’. In this project, we are investigating how to implement EMS and IES to the energy market in foremost rural areas. We are starting with the rural areas because there is a real need to apply these systems to the countryside where the energy grid is much weaker. Since big farms require lots of energy, a weak grid that can’t support a large amount of energy equals problems. As farmers explore their possibilities to produce their own energy, it makes grid companies, and the farmers themselves worried that an increase in solar panel production will overload the already weak grid. But with Chalmers’ and Eljun’s technology, we can together solve this problem.

Chalmers provides us with the insights and results from their previous projects, as well as those projects from other academics in Chalmers’ network. We then review, test and select components that can be used in our Energy Club concept, which aims to solve the issues on energy systems in the countryside (among other things). Already, Eljun has been able to develop AI and Blockchain technologies that will be used for sharing and verifying energy among members in the Energy Club.

Chalmers’ (and the planet’s) gains

On the other end of this collaboration, Chalmers has been continuously updated on the progress of applying parts of their IES and EMS technology in Eljun’s Energy Club project. This will serve as useful insights for the university’s research on sustainable energy systems. When we asked David Steen from the Chalmers team about what they are most excited about with this collaboration, he put it like this:

“We scientists do research and come up with smart and transformative things, but it is not always that it leads to something more than a report that someone might read and find interesting. Together with Eljun we can contribute to the development of the future energy markets and our research gets put to use. This gives us the possibility to continue developing and testing what we have been working on. And let’s set something straight, the goal of our research is not to win the Nobel Prize. It’s to give the research to the rest of the world to make something useful out of it - so that we can do something good for our planet.”

- David Steen, Researcher at Chalmers, 2021-21-06.

Diving into tech

Now, for you who are hungry for more technical information about the collaboration and what IES and EMS really are, we can tell you a bit more!

To start with, the specific input Chalmers is looking forward to receiving from Eljun, is data from the energy market, local energy grids and the local district heating system. Chalmers also wants data on how real-time steering needs to be specified and how integrations and API (connections between computers programs) needs to be specified from hardware distributors as well as data from energy clients of these new energy systems.

As for what IES are, they connect different types of energy systems to each other. This means that energy systems like electricity, heating, cooling, transportation systems and water can become integrated into one energy system. Whereas EMS are new technological steering devices (building on AI and blockchain) that make calculated decisions on when and where to charge and store energy. The aim of IES and EMS is to tackle the operational issues that will occur as renewable energy consumption increases in society (Chalmers, 2019).

Now it’s up to Eljun, to apply Chalmers academic accomplishments out in the real world and make a difference!

References

Antoniadou-Plytaria, K., Srivastava, A., Ali Fotouhi Ghazvini, M., Steen, D., Anh Tuan, L. & Carlson, O. (2019). Chalmers Campus as a Testbed for Intelligent Grids and Local Energy Systems. Conference paper presented at SEST 2019, 2nd International Conference on Smart Energy Systems and Technologies. Division of Electric Power Engineering Department of Electrical Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology. Gothenburg, Sweden.


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