DEMS Compact has been launched by Siemens Smart Grid Division, based on the energy management system DEMS, to provide municipal utilities with a cloud-based web service for virtual power plants.

The service enables the utilities to interconnect their customers’ small distributed energy resources together and offer the bundled power to operators of a large virtual power plant for marketing. Because the standard functions of DEMS are adequate for setting up a small virtual power plant, software license costs are reduced. Another advantage of the cloud-based web service is that there are no costs incurred for the computer hardware that is otherwise required.

Siemens will be offering this service starting in early summer 2014. The company will prove the service jointly with RWE, which operates one of the major virtual networks. Here the web service will initially support direct marketing and the use of distributed energy resources in the minute reserve range.

“With the cloud version of our distributed energy management system DEMS, municipal utilities can generate attractive revenues with their own individual consumption and generation capacities and at the same time play a role in developing the energy system of the future,” said Jan Mrosik, CEO of the Siemens Smart Grid Division.

Municipal utilities play an important role in providing a sustainable energy supply in countries such as Germany. With their regional base, they are well positioned to coordinate the increasing decentralization of power generation, and virtual power plants are an important resource to support this. However, the costs required to set up and operate small virtual power plants so that they can participate in the energy and balancing power markets frequently exceeds the economic benefits, and is why small and medium-sized municipal utilities in particular often dispense with this technology.

The basic functions of DEMS in the new version include communication interfaces for the distributed power generation plants, generation forecasts, and aggregation functions as well as a web portal through which owners of distributed plants can release their generated power for marketing in the virtual power plant network.

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