American PowerNet deploys blockchain energy trading platform with Australia’s Power Ledger


Electricity provider American PowerNet will deploy an energy trading technology in the North American market following a successful trial with Australian technology company Power Ledger.

The pilot was the first time Power Ledger’s peer-to-peer energy trading platform was deployed in the US, into the largest US wholesale electricity market, the PJM Interconnection, which powers 65 million people across 13 states and the District of Columbia.

Using Power Ledger’s blockchain-enabled xGrid platform, American PowerNet was able to trade solar power  generated from the rooftop of its headquarters in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, with two commercial neighbors across the grid.

A total of 43MWh of energy was traded on the platform, resulting in a 17% renewable energy mix for the buying participants, who were able to access renewable energy at 5% lower rates compared to grid rates.

The technology was integrated with American PowerNet’s existing distribution system and solar assets by using data from existing meters, without the need for additional hardware, or engineering fees.

American PowerNet CEO Scott Helm, said: “We are delighted with the results and will be looking to extend Power Ledger’s technology across our market.

“This trial has demonstrated the value proposition of blockchain technology and we believe there will be significant interest from market participants.”

The trial result comes as the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission last month issued a historic ruling, Order 2222, which paves the way for aggregated distributed energy resources (DERs) to compete alongside traditional power plants and other grid resources in wholesale markets.

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Power Ledger co-founder, Dr. Jemma Green, adds: “Our technology is proving to be compatible with existing large-scale electricity infrastructure like the PJM in the US and the National Electricity Network in Australia.”

Off the back of the APN trial, Power Ledger’s platform will be transitioned to an ongoing commercial deal with the two end users for another two years in what is expected to result in 350MWh of energy, including 75MWh of renewable energy, being traded.

Power Ledger and APN are also exploring further opportunities to deploy the platform in other jurisdictions in North America, with possible projects including loyalty P2P trading of electricity, where consumers can sell their rooftop electricity to their favorite retail brand in exchange for store vouchers.

“This is a great option for supermarkets, food outlets and shopping centres as it builds brand engagement – footfall and click fall with their own customers,” said Dr Green.