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Energy Transition: Energy-Network-Experts bundle Know-how!


Energy transition only works through a smart overall power grid – storage technologies and their integration are decisive for a stable supply – KIT coordinates European research project

European research partners provide the know-how on a wide range of energy infrastructures such as storage, solar and biomass for the energy transition.

The storage of renewable energies and smart integration of storage into decentralized networks is crucial for a stable energy supply of the future. Coordinated by KIT, the project SmILES brings expertise in simulation, optimization and utilization of such storage infrastructures across Europe together. The aim is to build a platform for the exchange of data and best practices for the integration of heterogeneous energy sources and their storage technologies, as well as the strengthening of joint european research.

To face the energy transition, more and more decentralized supply systems are being created, which are fed by different energy sources. The smart energy network of the future will balance the fluctuations in the generation of energy from different energy sources. „Today there is no longer the one source of energy that delivers everything,“, explains Isabelle Südmeyer, Coordinator of SmILES (Smart Integration of Energy Storages in Local Multi Energy Systems). Flexible and sustainable Multi-Energy-Systems that ensure stable power generation and distribution are needed in order to accomodate increasing amounts of renewable energy contributions to the entire generated power.

The challenge is to control the consumption and supply of renewable energies with the help of storage technologies in such a way that they are in equilibrium with one another and the hybrid smart networks can be operated efficiently and economically for electricity and heat requirements. Although a large number of research projects are carried out across Europe dealing with the question how different energy carriers and their respective storage technologies can be integrated into an overall network, they are based on different research approaches, instruments and heterogeneous framework conditions. This is where SmILES starts. In the course of the project the six research partners bring together their previous methods and results.  They also analyze and compare simulations, models and optimizations for generalized solutions. SmILES has different use cases and system configurations, namely an urban quartier, one small town in rural surroundings, an industrial park and the research campus at KIT. On the basis of these configurations, a generally accessible data platform will be developed. This knowledge platform will include information and analysis for energy demand and supply for different and all possible contexts.

„Our long-term goal is to open up and institutionalize this merger of European research projects for further partners”, emphasizes Südmeyer. SmILES is part of the European Common Research and Innovation Agenda (ECRIA) and is intended to support the implementation of the objectives of the Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan). In addition to KIT as coordinator, the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT), Danmarks Tekniske Universitet (DTU), Electricité de France SA (EDF), European Energy Research Alliance (EERA AISBL) and the Vlaamse Instelling Voor Technologisch Onderzoek NV (VITO) take part in the project. The total budget is 2,440,683 euros with KIT receiving 909,439 euros. SmILES will run until November 30, 2019.

For more information, please contact the project coordinator Isabelle Suedmeyer: