The energy transition presents grid operators and utilities with the task of continuing to ensure secure grid operations in the face of a large number of volatile generation plants and increasing electrification of the mobility and heating sectors. In order to be able to fulfill this in the future, the greatest challenge, in addition to grid expansion, is to make power generation and demand more flexible through intelligent control and incentivization, and to use existing grid structures efficiently.
The goal of the FlexHub project is therefore specifically to develop a flexibility data registry with an energy market for flexible consumers and generators. The focus of the Fraunhofer Center Digital Energy is to develop and evaluate different decentralized architectures. In addition to considering the functionality and scalability of the solutions, the IT security and cyber resilience of the solutions will also be investigated.
Implementing a security-by-design approach during the development of new solutions is essential for the development of secure solutions. For this purpose, the partners of the Fraunhofer Center Digital Energy have supported the development of flexibility platforms from early on. A cyber-physical laboratory environment enables the investigation of scenarios that would be difficult to perform in a field test, such as failure cases and IT attack scenarios. The decentralized platform concepts pursued by Fraunhofer promise to be particularly robust against errors and failures.
In addition, a use-case specific assessment of the ICT infrastructure in terms of security and functionality was conducted to ensure a smooth implementation.
As part of the project, a cyber-physical laboratory environment was created in which the decentralized solution developed in the project could be successfully investigated. In our smart grid laboratory, it was possible to test the use of various ICT technologies such as powerline communication as well as to study the feedback effect on the energy system. This offers the possibility of investigating the systems over the entire distance from the flexibility (e.g.: a battery storage system) in the smart grid laboratory, via the connected energy management system, the communication path to the flexibility platform. For a scalable evaluation of the platforms and the cyber resilience of the overall system, a co-simulation with virtualized participants and a simulated ICT and energy system can be performed in addition to the investigation in the lab.
Funding: Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Klimaschutz