1EnergySystems Launches Distributed Energy Resource Optimizer (1E-DERO)

Software platform enables grid-aware aggregation and optimization of energy storage fleets

1Energy Systems announced its second software offering: the Distributed Energy Resource Optimizer™. The 1E-DERO™ is a software platform that runs in a utility’s control center and maximizes the economics of energy storage fleets by matching those assets to the most valuable mix of opportunities on a day-ahead, hour-ahead and real-time basis. The product makes it simpler for utilities to nimbly respond to economic opportunities for their storage resources while protecting and supporting local grid priorities.

“1E-DERO™ is a major milestone toward our company mission of providing control system software and power system engineering services to help utilities integrate distributed energy resources into the grid,” said David Kaplan, Founder and CEO of 1Energy Systems. “With our 1Energy Intelligent Controller™ and now 1E-DERO™, we have the most complete software platform available for the control and economic optimization of energy storage fleets at utility scale.”

Optimization, Not Just Aggregation

1E-DERO™ enters an energy storage market on the cusp of explosive growth. The early period of single system pilot projects is giving way to industry scale-up, driven by events such as California’s mandate to install 1.3GW of energy storage by 2023 and Tesla’s construction of a “giga-factory” capable of producing 50GWh/year of energy storage products.*

Earlier this year, Greentech Media Research forecasted the U.S. Energy Storage market to grow by four times the size of the 2015 market to 858MW/year by 2019. As utilities and other third parties gear up to own large quantities of energy storage, the issue of how to manage fleets of these systems has come to the fore. In response, a number of “aggregator” products and services that follow the model pioneered by demand response have been announced.

The problem is, this aggregator model often bypasses the distribution system operator, giving them no way to understand and manage impacts to the local utility grid through which the energy must flow. While this issue can be ignored at small scales of distributed resources, it quickly becomes problematic as penetrations reach higher levels. A perfect example of this is the solar conflicts that broke out in Hawaii and Arizona between utilities and third parties when utilities began experiencing local grid issues and denying interconnection permits in areas with over 15-20% penetration of solar-equipped homes.

1E-DERO™ prevents this problem for utilities by enabling “grid-aware” aggregation that routes all requests for grid-attached resources through the distribution utility, so they can be considered in the context of grid operational priorities and fulfilled without causing unintended consequences to the overall reliability of the system.

“Improving a utility’s operational capabilities through central energy storage aggregation is distinctive in an emerging category of Distributed Energy Resource Management Systems (DERMS) products,” said Omar Saadeh of GTM Research. “Driven by an underlying need to accommodate and even optimize distributed resources coupled with increasing regulatory pressure, we’ve noticed a significant uptick of utility interest to invest in DERMS platforms.”

1E-DERO™ at Snohomish County Public Utility District

1E-DERO™’s first deployment will be at the Snohomish PUD headquartered in Everett, Washington. Snohomish is charged by their commissioners with meeting all future load growth without adding any additional fossil fuel generation. They have identified energy storage as a key resource in meeting that challenge and are currently deploying three energy storage systems at two different substations. 1E-DERO™ will enable the utility to tap bulk power economic opportunities with this fleet while ensuring that important local grid priorities are also met.

“We look forward to the opportunity to use 1E-DERO™ to maximize the value of our energy storage resources for the utility,” said Craig Collar, General Manager at Snohomish PUD. “We looked in the marketplace, and we believe the 1E-DERO will best meet our needs and objectives.”

From Storage Optimization to Distributed Resource Optimization

While 1E-DERO™’s first implementation with Snohomish will focus on energy storage optimization, the product is being designed to manage a broader set of distributed energy resources, both in front of and behind the meter. To that end, 1Energy Systems is now finalizing an agreement with a second 1E-DERO™ utility customer that will involve the system managing solar resources in addition to energy storage. More details will be provided later this year.

By starting with utility-owned energy storage, 1E-DERO™ is designed to optimize the superset, “four-quadrant” resource that will form the foundation for integrating a diverse set of distributed resources over time, including resources aggregated by a third-party. As utilities evolve towards a distribution system operator (DSO) role, storage connected to the distribution grid will combine with next-generation software platforms built on 1E-DERO™ to allow behind-the-meter resources (such as rooftop solar, demand response, and storage) to work in coordination with utility-owned resources (such as solar arrays, capacitor banks and other circuit manager devices). These optimized combinations will enable a next-generation power system that is much less carbon intensive, but every bit as reliable as the one we enjoy today.

1E-DERO™ and the 1E-IC™

While 1E-DERO™ will work with any DNP3-enabled energy storage system, 1Energy Systems recommends implementing its 1Energy Intelligent Controller™ product on storage systems running under 1E-DERO™’s optimization. Doing so allows the widest range of capabilities to derive value, both economic and technical, from the resources in place.

For more information on 1E-DERO™ and the 1E-IC™, visit: http://www.1energysystems.com/products.