Power Grid

11 Oct 2022

Smart Meters and Heat Pumps to Drive Belgian Domestic Flexibility

11 Oct 2022  by   
Octopus Energy Group’s entech platform Kraken will control domestic assets such as heat pumps, smart meters and other energy tech to automatically reduce bills for Belgian households.

Courtesy Octopus Energy

The platform has been licensed by energy solutions provider Noven to save Belgian households from costly peak energy costs, through a mix of smart home and flexibility technology.

Noven will test the Kraken platform to control heat pumps, solar panels, EV chargers and smart meters to automatically reduce consumption and ensure customers avoid the costly peak charges. It is the first time domestic flexibility has been harnessed in this way in the country.

Following a number of successful flexibility trials like this in the UK, which saw over 100,000 consumers willingly reduce usage in return for savings, Kraken and Noven are hoping to expand the project and bring down grid costs and energy bills in Belgium.

According to Octopus Energy, Kraken offers its clients end-to-end management of the whole energy supply chain through the platform, aiming to drive efficiency and flexibility.

Devrim Celal, CEO of Kraken, commented in a statement: “We feel very privileged to have been selected to help Belgium create a smarter ecosystem for energy users. This next partnership with Noven will allow the same benefits of cheaper, greener energy to be passed on to households.

“By remotely managing a plethora of home devices, we are able to save customers money without impacting their day to day lives. Boundary pushing technology projects like this will be the best way to reduce our reliance on dirty gas and move the whole continent away from exposure to high wholesale energy prices to bring costs down through the whole system.”

Belgium households will soon have a capacity threshold beyond which, if surpassed, means consumers will begin to be charged at a higher rate.

In Belgium, system operator Elia and Kraken have already begun working on a number of projects to create the green grid of the future in Belgium, and now Kraken is looking after other companies along the supply chain, including Noven.

Elia has recently announced the use of virtual power plants (VPPs) to coordinate grid balancing. Grid balancing is becoming ever more important as grid operators mitigate the impact of more renewables coming online, which can cause grid bottlenecks, such as the situation in the Netherlands.

Pieter-Jan Degroote, project manager at Noven, added: “It’s through…projects like these that we will be able to reduce our reliance on dirty gas. It will not only allow Europe to move away from high wholesale energy prices, but it will also help promote greener energy solutions.”

The platform’s flexibility division is currently contracted to control over 3,800MW across 10,000 green energy assets. The platform is targeting the management of 25,000 devices and 6,000MW of energy capacity by 2023.

The platform also recently went live in Canada for the first time with a 500kW Tesla battery owned by Hydro REIN.


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