Information about own consumption patterns, and sometimes electricity prices or the consequences of this for the power system, can contribute to consumers adjusting their demand. Often, information is pro-vided via a smartphone app. This means that demand can be shifted from periods of peak demand to periods of low demand and / or periods of high variable generation. This can, in turn, contribute to a better balance between supply and demand both long-, medium- and short-term. The reference projects mainly researched residential demand, but one demonstration also covered a municipality.
Components & enablers
- Smart metering
- Effective sensors
- Removal of regulatory barriers: some countries do not allow customers / third parties direct access to metering data
State of the art in application and research
Awareness of energy-related issues is limited, as demonstrated by the Flexiciency project. Smart meters are being rolled out across Europe in various paces, and enabling access to real-time or near real-time information about own consumption might change the ways in which consumers adjust their electricity demand.
In Ireland, the Power Off & Save project tested whether and how fast residential consumers would respond to a notification sent to their phone when there was congestion in the grid, and awarded customers with a reduction in their electricity bill. It found that the incorporation of smart homes leads to peak reduction, particularly in the mornings and evenings. Most participants responded to a request to reduce their consumption within 5 – 25 minutes.
The NEBEF mechanism (RTE) allows consumers to participate in energy markets through load reductions.
Flexiciency and Power Off & Save both found that automatic control appliances, both in homes, on EVs and in municipal buildings, increase the efficiency of the information measure. Automatic control maximises customer comfort and minimises the required effort.
In most Flexiciency pilots, consumption was reduced when consumers were informed about consumption. The results from the Swedish pilot are ambiguous, but this might be due to a small sample. The positive results might be due to the motivation of participants in the project rather than information in itself – the projects are unable to confirm whether this has been controlled for.
The FLEXCoop project increases the awareness of the prosumers by increasing their local intelligence via an energy Management and Control Decision support framework that locally optimises demand response.
Project Enera, through the Enera app, provides energy saving tips to consumers based on their electricity consumption for easy implementation.
Technology Readiness Level
ENOVA is currently conducting seven large-scale pilots. Flexiciency has previously done the same. Information about consumption and apps communicating this have proven feasible and have beneficial results.
Current focus of R&D and research gaps
Seven Norwegian ENOVA AMS pilot projects are currently testing whether access to real-time information about own electricity consumption can lead to changes in the consumption pattern. The goal of the project, which in total has more than 20,000 participants, is mainly to test whether consumption is reduced but also when there is peak demand.
 ENOVA AMS-målere piloter [Link]
 Flexiciency: Italy, Spain and Sweden
- Final report: [Link]
 STORY – pilot 2
 RealValue [Link]
 Flex4Grid [Link]
 Project Enera [Link]
 NEBEF mechanism [Link]