This research project by the Bosch IoT Lab is part of the lighthouse project of the Bundesamt für Energy (Federal Ministry for Energy) ”Quartierstrom” (German for district power). We are building a decentralized electricity market where solar energy can be sold from neighbour to neighbour using blockchain technology. To secure future energy supply, generation of electricity is more and more dependend on renewable resources. A shift from big power plants to many small and often private producers decentralizes the energy market. It is now technically and economically feasible for home-owners to place solar panels on their roofs and produce energy not only for themselves but for their neighbours.
We implement a blockchain based trading system with more than 30 participating households in the village of Walenstadt in Switzerland. The project pools the participating consumers and prosumers as a coalition for self-consumption and the local utility provides the distribution grid as an asset and supplies the community if it cannot supply itself with locally produced solar energy. For internal balancing the project implements a local energy market between peers and in particular treats the utility company as a local market participant just like a large prosumer.
- RQ1: Is there a consumer demand for the sourcing of local electrical energy, i.e. similar to renewable energy demand?
- RQ2: Can information technology foster the understanding of produc- tion and consumption of energy and build trust in local and renewable energy resources?
- RQ3: What are potential barriers to a trusted and open energy market and how can these be overcome by technology?
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