Siemens working with Viridity on smart grid projects

Audrey Zibelman

Audrey Zibelman, President
and CEO of Viridity Energy

Siemens has announced a partnership with Viridity Energy in a project that will develop virtual power plants on college campuses and with other large consumers of electricity. Viridity offers smart grid management services including controllable loads and advanced storage systems.

Viridity will integrate Siemens’ decentralised energy management system (DEMS) into its VPower electricity forecasting and optimising system. According to the announcement, the new solution will allow for managed power loads, power generation by customers, and resale of stored energy into capacity, day-ahead, real-time, and ancillary energy markets.

Viridity’s technology tabulates demand from university campuses, large industrial operations, government centres and the like and manages the load as a single unit, or “virtual power plant”. Power generated on these sites is managed as controllable load as well including any available storage.

Managing the load in this way allows for the optimisation of resources that are available and for accurate forecasting and management of demand for the next day or the following week. Knowing this kind of information allows the large electricity customers to accurately bid for the forecasted supply from regional energy markets. Giving large customers this kind of control allows them to set their own environmental goals, optimise costs, and manage their own energy purchase costs.

Siemens’ DEMS is the heart of the new solution around which the Viridity solution is designed. The DEMS software engine creates models of the available resources and generates usage forecasts while balancing load and available energy resources in real-time. All of these services optimise capacity according to real-time demand and the entire system can be installed locally or remotely through a hosted service.

Together, Siemens and Viridity have developed a comprehensive solution that considers how energy is used from the point it is generated, through the energy markets, and to the consumer where it is used. The result is a highly cost-effective smart grid solution that creates value in energy usage while allowing end users to integrate their own renewable sources of power.

“Electric utilities and electric customers are increasingly recognising the value that distributed resources can have on the grid,” said Audrey Zibelman, president and CEO of Viridity Energy. “This value can be maximised when customers are able to optimise individual load management and generation resources as integrated, dynamic resources on the grid.”

“To provide this service to our customers, we wanted a base technology platform that was proven and was of the same quality as those that are used to manage resources on the power grid,” Zibelman continued. “The Siemens DEMS system was a ready-made solution to that requirement.”

Siemens has developed smart grid technology all along the energy value chain including planning and consulting services, as well as software solutions and supporting services. Siemens specialises in developing smart grid solutions for commercial and industrial customers including automation technology, IT systems, advanced lighting technology, and energy efficient appliances.

“Working with innovative partners like Viridity, Siemens supplies Smart Grid solutions along the entire energy conversion chain – a portfolio unmatched by any supplier in the industry – and solutions like Viridity’s VPower system allow market participants to better manage the availability of energy for themselves and for other users on the grid,” said Mike Edmonds, vice president of energy automation at Siemens Energy.