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美国能源部的研究人员说,区块链可能是可再生能源的革命

2020-5-21 12:19

 

美国能源部下属的国家可再生能源实验室(NREL)一直在对区块链的能源交易进行调查。


有些用例非常适合区块链。太阳能和其他可再生能源的普及缺少一个环节。对于邻居们来说,在用电高峰期分享能源,而不是从电网中获取能源,就需要相信关于传输了多少能源的数据,而且这需要一种廉价的支付方式。区块链满足这两个要求。


NREL工程师戴恩•克里斯坦森(Dane Christensen)表示:“分布式电网运营决策具有革命性意义。”“这就像上世纪80年代的某个人在阐述互联网的经济机遇一样。每个人都会嘲笑你的。这就是现在区块链应用程序正在发生的事情——另一场技术革命的基础工具正在出现,而这可能是其中之一。”


NREL最近表示,它正在与能源公司Exelon和能源网络基金会(EWF)合作,探索基于社区的能源市场的区块链。


Exelon在美国东部拥有6家公用事业公司,拥有1000万用户,是美国最大的核电站运营商。EWF是一个为能源部门开发开源区块链平台的非营利组织。


该项目与Exelon和EWF的重点是推动电力公司和消费者之间的协调。NREL正在探索将太阳能电池板等分布式能源(DERs)连接到本地配电网络的方法。


NREL公司正致力于利用其能源系统集成设施(ESIF)开发的数字身份和硬件来协调电力供应和需求。


但问题是整合这些不同的DER系统,这需要专门的工程和系统的检修。


“其中很大一部分成本是由不同DER类型的自定义和手动流程驱动的。每个馈线是不同的。每个家庭都是不同的。随着越来越多的可再生能源被采用,越来越多的电动汽车被采用,持续的专业工程必须完成,”NREL的机械工程师戴恩·克里斯坦森(Dane Christensen)说。


人们可以简单地将电网分为两部分:连接初级电站和变电站的主电网传输线,以及连接变电站和用户的局部电网或馈线。


目前的电馈线不是设计来处理双向流动的电力。正常情况下,电力从变电站输送到变压器,再输送到用户。而对于DERs,则是相反的方向。此外,记录所有用户家庭或办公大楼产生的电力是困难的。


不仅如此,电动汽车充电还会对变压器和当地电网造成压力。增加来自DERs的容量可能会减少负载,因此需要扩大本地电网基础设施。NREL希望设计出解决方案,以避免将能量反馈到主电网。


使用区块链,NREL的目标是使一个可扩展的解决方案,可以很容易地设置在电力馈线,可以根据需要定制。它目前正在运行一个虚拟试点,将电动汽车、智能设备、蓄电池和其他组件连接到一个区块链。

NREL之前对区块链的能量测试


去年,国会研究服务处发现,越来越多的核电站运营商正在寻找向邻居出售多余电力的方法。目前的系统,如能源管理系统(EMS)和高级分配管理系统(ADMS),无法扩展到管理数千个家庭之间的事务。


在2018年,NREL开发了“forsee”,这是一个家庭能源管理系统,可以预测未来家庭的能源消耗。该组织与BlockCypher合作,试用使用forsee数据的分布式能源市场。在这里,区块链智能合同被用来以低于公用事业的价格购买电力,并使用数字货币来结算交易。

与其他研究机构合作


展望未来,NREL将与其他国家实验室合作,加快区块链在能源领域的应用。区块链for optimization Security and Energy Management (BLOSEM)是为了探索区块链而成立的,NREL作为会员提供其专业知识。


国家能源技术实验室是该项目的领导者,艾姆斯实验室、SLAC国家加速器实验室和太平洋西北国家实验室是研究团队的一部分。电网现代化实验室联盟正在资助BLOSEM。

 

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), a unit of the U.S. Department of Energy, has been investigating blockchain for energy transactions.

Some use cases are a natural fit for blockchain. The proliferation of solar energy and other renewable sources has a missing link. For neighbors to share energy during peak times rather than sourcing it from the grid, there’s a need to trust the data about how much energy has been transferred, and it requires a cheap means of payment. Blockchain meets both requirements.

“Distributing grid operational decision-making is revolutionary,” said Dane Christensen, an engineer at NREL. “It’s really like somebody in the 1980s expounding on the economic opportunity of the Internet. Everyone would have laughed at you. That’s kind of what’s happening right now with blockchain applications — the foundational tools for another technology revolution are emerging, and this could be one of them.”

The (NREL) recently said it was working with energy utility Exelon and the Energy Web Foundation (EWF) to explore blockchain for community-based energy markets. 

Exelon owns six utility companies in the Eastern United States, with 10 million customers and is the largest operator of nuclear power plants in the United States. EWF is a non-profit developing an open-source blockchain platform for the energy sector. 

The project with Exelon and EWF focuses on driving coordination between utilities and consumers. The NREL is exploring ways to connect distributed energy resources (DERs) such as solar panels to the local distribution network. 

NREL is working on coordinating the supply and demand of electricity by leveraging digital identity and hardware developed by NREL’s Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF). 

But the problem is integrating these diverse DER systems, which require specialized engineering and overhauling of systems. 

“A large part of that cost is driven by custom and manual processes for different DER types. Every feeder is different. Every home is different. As more renewables are adopted, as more electric vehicles are adopted, continuous expert engineering has to be done,” said Dane Christensen, a mechanical engineer at NREL.

One can view the grid simplistically in two parts, the main grid transmission lines connecting the primary generating stations with the substations, and the local grid or feeders connecting the substation with consumers.

Current electricity feeders are not designed to handle a bi-directional flow of electricity. Normally electricity is transmitted from a substation to transformers and on to consumers. With DERs, the power goes in the other direction. Also, recording electricity produced by all the prosumer homes or office buildings is difficult. 

Not only that, but charging electric cars is a strain on the transformers and the local grid. Adding capacity from DERs may reduce the load and hence the need to upsize local grid infrastructure. And NREL wants to design solutions that avoid the need to feed energy back into the main grid.

Using blockchain, NREL aims to enable a scalable solution that can be easily set up on electricity feeders, which can be customized as needed. It is currently running a virtual pilot, which connects electric vehicles, smart appliances, storage batteries, and other components to a blockchain. 

Previous trials by NREL for blockchain in energy

Last year, the Congressional Research Service found that DER operators were increasingly looking for ways to sell excess electricity to their neighbors. The current systems, such as the energy management system (EMS) and an advanced distribution management system (ADMS) are not scalable to manage transactions between thousands of homes. 

In 2018, NREL developed ‘forsee’, a home energy management system that predicts future energy consumption in homes. The organization worked with BlockCypher to trial a distributed energy marketplace using forsee data. Here, blockchain smart contracts were used to buy electricity at lower prices than the utility and used digital currency to settle transactions. 

Collaboration with other research organizations

Going forward, NREL will be working with other national laboratories to accelerate blockchain adoption in the energy sector. Blockchain for Optimized Security and Energy Management (BLOSEM) was set up to explore blockchain, and NREL is providing its expertise as a member. 

The National Energy Technology Laboratory is leading the project, with Ames Laboratory, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory as part of the research team. The Grid Modernization Laboratory Consortium is funding BLOSEM. 

 

来自: Ledger Insights