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OASIS Energy Interoperation Technical Committee
Statement of Purpose:
Energy markets have been characterized by poor coordination of supply and demand. This failing has exacerbated the problems caused by rising energy demand. In particular, poor communications concerning times of peak use cause economic loss to energy suppliers and consumers. There are today a limited number of high demand periods (roughly ten days a year, and only a portion of those days) when the failure to manage peak demand causes immense costs to the provider of energy; and, if the demand cannot be met, expensive degradations of service to the consumer of energy. As the proportion of alternative energies on the grid rises, and more energy comes from intermittent sources, the frequency and scale of these problems will increase. In addition, new electric loads such as electric vehicles will increase the need for electricity and with new load characteristics and timing.
Energy consumers can use a variety of technologies and strategies to shift energy use to times of lower demand and also to reduce use during peak periods. This shifting and reduction can reduce the need for new power plants, and transmission and distribution systems. These changes will reduce the overall costs of energy through greater economic efficiency. This process is called various names, including Demand Response (DR), demand shaping, and load shaping.
Distributed energy resources, including generation and storage, now challenge the traditional hierarchical relationship of supplier and consumer. Alternative and renewable energy sources may be placed closer to the end nodes of the grid. Wind and solar generation, as well as industrial co-generation, allow end nodes to sometimes be energy suppliers. Energy storage, for example mobile storage in plug- in hybrid vehicles, means that the same device may be sometimes a supplier, sometime a consumer. As these sources are all intermittent, they increase the challenge of coordinating supply and demand to maintain the reliability of the electric grid.
Better communication of energy prices addresses growing needs for lower-carbon, lower-energy buildings, net zero-energy systems, and supply-demand integration that take advantage of dynamic pricing. Local generation and local storage require that the consumer (in today's situation) make investments in technology and infrastructure including electric charging and thermal storage systems. Buildings and businesses and the power grid will benefit from automated and timely communication of energy pricing, capacity information, and other grid information.
Consistency of technology for interoperation and standardization of data communication can allow essentially the same model to work for homes, small businesses, commercial buildings, office parks, neighborhood grids, and industrial facilities, simplifying interoperation across the broad range of energy providers, distributors, and consumers, and reducing costs for implementation.
These communications will involve energy consumers, producers, transmission systems, and distribution systems. They must enable aggregation for production, consumption and curtailment resources. Market makers, such as Independent System Operators (ISOs), utilities, and other evolving mechanisms need to be supported so that interoperation can be maintained as the Smart Grid evolves. Beyond these interfaces, building and facility agents can make decisions on energy sale purchase and use that fit the goals and requirements of their home, business, or industrial facility.
The new symmetry of energy transactions demands symmetry of interface. A net consumer of energy may be a producer when the sun is shining, the wind is blowing, or a facility is producing co-generated energy. Each interface must support symmetry as well, with energy and economic transactions flowing each way.
In addition to architectural symmetry, this Technical Committee should create composed and composable specifications that leverage existing technologies (such as OASIS fine-grained web services security standards and reliable messaging standards) rather than reinventing. These specifications will define service interfaces and the data on which they operate to allow interoperation without requiring deep knowledge of the systems as they are implemented.
The Technical Committee will define the means of interaction between Smart Grids and their end nodes, including Smart Buildings and Facilities, Enterprises, Industry, Homes, and Vehicles. Dynamic pricing, reliability, and emergency signals must be communicated through interoperability mechanisms that meet business and energy needs, scale, use a variety of communication technologies, maintain security and privacy, and are reliable. We must try to define interoperability in a manner that will work with anticipated changes as well as those we cannot predict as technology changes.
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