Image: ISGF

The India Smart Grid Forum (ISGF) has launched a blockchain peer-to-peer trading pilot with Australian tech pioneer Power Ledger.

The initiative in Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh state in northern India has launched with its first 12 participants comprised of nine customers with rooftop solar PV and three other customers without who will be the net buyers.

The customers have been provided training through online training sessions by the ISGF on various functionalities of the blockchain platform and the procedures that need to be followed to participate in the trading activities.

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As a pilot project, the participants will engage in mock trading, i.e. no money transactions, for the first three months. During this period, the ISGF will try different trading logics and test scenarios to secure a win-win for all stakeholders.

“This pilot project will demonstrate the feasibility of rooftop solar energy trading through smart contracts on the blockchain platform between prosumers with their neighbouring households,” says ISGF President, Reji Kumar Pillai.

“Power Ledger’s platform integrates the transaction data from the smart meters to enable households to set prices, track energy trading in real time and enable the settlement of surplus solar energy transactions.”

Other participants in the pilot include the state utility Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation (UPPCL), the Lucknow distributor Madhyanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited (MVVNL) and Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency (UPNEDA).

Abajyon Consulting supported the integration of blockchain platform with UPPCL’s billing system.

The results and recommendations of the pilot project will be submitted to UPPCL and the Uttar Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission for consideration for framing regulations to promote P2P trading of rooftop solar power amongst prosumers and consumers in the state.

The pilot is the second in India following an earlier initiative of the New Delhi-based distribution company BSES Rajdhani Power and Power Ledger to trial P2P trading drawing of solar infrastructure servicing a group of gated communities in the Dwarka region.

It is significant in that the Uttar Pradesh ERC is understood to be the first regulatory body in the world to approve P2P blockchain trading in its solar rooftop policy.

The ISGF is a public private partnership initiative of the Indian government with the mandate of accelerating smart grid deployments across the country.

Power Ledger is a pioneer in blockchain peer to peer trading and its platform has been widely implemented in initiatives around the world.