Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Siemens wins demand response deal with North America's Direct Energy

Iain Morris
August 12, 2014
German technology giant Siemens has revealed it will install a demand response management system (DRMS) for North American energy provider Direct Energy in what will represent its biggest demand response project in the world so far.

Direct Energy (Houston, TX, USA), which serves more than six million residential and commercial customers throughout North America, will use the DRMS to manage its existing load commitments in multiple regions.

It believes the technology will help independent system operators (ISOs) to more efficiently manage power demand requirements, especially during times of peak usage.

Demand response programs are designed to help control power usage by giving consumers the ability to reduce energy usage at times of the day when prices may be highest, or during emergency situations.

By giving customers more information about energy usage, they can help to bring about a reduction in power demand, allowing utilities to better manage energy resources.

Siemens (Munich, Germany) plans to integrate the DRMS with sub-metering devices located at each Direct Energy utility account so that consumption data can be gathered.

Direct Energy will then be able to use the data to develop an understanding of how much energy it needs for transactions in the market.

“Electric retail providers like Direct Energy can now integrate their demand response activities with a number of ISOs, using a single unified application to manage demand response assets for all customer classes including commercial, industrial, and the residential sector, for programs involving both economic and emergency dispatch,” said Craig Cavanaugh, director of Siemens smart grid applications and solutions. “The flexibility of Siemens DRMS to provide automated interfaces to multiple ISO systems will allow Direct Energy to operate their portfolio in a more streamlined and efficient manner and will improve reliability for all of their customers.”

Although Direct Energy currently offers demand response programs in the US, it will be able to expand its offerings throughout both the US and Canada thanks to the use of Siemens techonology.

“This system will allow Direct Energy’s commodity customers to reduce their energy costs,” said Hemant Jain, head of demand response for Direct Energy.
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