Managing Energy Storage Capacities Dispersed in an Electrical Grid to Reduce the Effects of Renewable Energy Source Variability (smartDESC)
In a large-scale distributed energy storage system, the presence of an enormous number of control points poses a significant challenge to grid operators. Recognizing the technology gap, École Polytechnique de Montréal proposed the project “Managing Energy Storage Capacities Dispersed in an Electrical Grid to Reduce the Effects of Renewable Energy Source Variability” for funding under the Government of Canada's ecoEnergy Innovation program. The project was awarded $1.1M to apply an optimizing technique to the complex control problem for large-scale distributed energy storage unit management in power grids.
Renamed to 'smartDESC', the objective of the project was to provide an approach to control that could be applied to millions of energy storage sites in an electrical grid, such as water heaters, space heaters, electric vehicle batteries, and so on. At this stage, the concept could be implemented almost as-is in a pilot project, provided that the following are found: a manufacturer to produce the mean field controllers; an electricity distributor to install the necessary equipment; an aggregation service provider to manage data; and a proponent to oversee project management and coordination.