Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Siemens backs smart grid pilot in Rotterdam

Steve Rogerson
May 25, 2017

A pilot project in Rotterdam aims to connect 20,000 smart homes and distributed energy sources to a smart grid by 2020. The aim of the project is for intelligent control of power generation and consumption in Rotterdam, starting in the Merwe-Vierhavens district.
The Siemens DEMS decentralised energy management system has been selected as a platform for the grid.
The city of Rotterdam, the Dutch grid operator Stedin and Dutch energy service provider Lyv Smart Lyving will start with Siemens as their technology partner for the pilot project. During the course of this project, 20,000 smart homes and distributed energy sources such as wind turbines or photovoltaic plants are to be connected to a smart grid over the next three years.
The core element will be the Siemens DEMS. Omnetric Group, the Siemens joint venture with Accenture, is to deliver the IT services for the project.
The aim of the project is to provide intelligent control of power generation and consumption, starting in the Rotterdam district of Merwe-Vierhavens, to even out consumption peaks, avoid grid overloads and save energy and distribution costs. Another goal is to encourage investment in more renewable energy sources and energy storage systems as well as to make new business models possible.
The DEMS serves as a platform for the smart electricity grid in Rotterdam to balance the fluctuations of generation and loads and to compensate power peaks in the grid.
The smart grid also offers companies and households that generate power themselves attractive conditions for marketing surplus electricity, thus turning customers into prosumers instead of mere consumers. In this way the Rotterdam smart grid is also expected to stimulate the local economy and smooth the way for innovations and new business possibilities. The mix of large and small port-related companies as well as private homes in Rotterdam will provide a suitable test environment for the smart grid pilot.
After successful completion of the test phase, the partners are planning to extend the smart grid to other districts and later also to the surrounding region outside Rotterdam with a million additional connections. Working with locally generated power from photovoltaic plants and wind turbines, the grid should make it possible to have an optimised energy balance by 2050. It is also hoped that this will create a possible way to provide other regions of the Netherlands with electrical power in the future.