Optimizing the Grid Operation by Using the FNN Control Box


From 2025, the installation of intelligent metering systems will be mandatory for households in Germany with a yearly consumption from 6,000 kilowatt hours or with a photovoltaik system of over seven kilowatts of installed capacity. By this, the German government aims to promote the digitalization of the power system and the energy transition. This creates new opportunities to optimize the grid operation as well as the integration of renewable energies and new consumers (such as electric vehicles and heat pumps) into the low voltage grid.

Within the intelligent metering system, the Smart Meter Gateway is the central communication unit. It enables grid operators, utilities and other stakeholders to access billing data and grid data as well as operating resources such as photovoltaic systems, batteries, heat pumps, charging infrastructure and energy management systems. For the latter a control box is needed. The VDE FNN, the technical regulator for power grids in Germany, has defined a standardized control box for this purpose.

Energynautics and its partners Swistec, VIVAVIS and COUNT+CARE, as well as the associated partners Webasto, SOLARWATT and ENTEGA Plus, have joined forces to investigate the Smart Meter Gateway and the FNN control box with regard to the new opportunities for optimizing the grid operation. The German project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy.

The objective of the project is to develop a smart FNN control box, the so called SMECON-Box (Smart-MEter-CONtrol-Box). It combines local intelligence and central controllability. By using a decentral and self-learning algorithm, the SMECON-Box will determine the grid state continuously and, in case of a critical grid situation, intervene autonomously. By this, the remote control by the grid operator will be minimized. A special focus is on the development of decentral grid supporting charging strategies for electric vehicles. Apart of the project lead, Energynautics is mainly responsible for developing the intelligent control algorithm and ensuring communication between the algorithm and controllable consumers together with Swistec.

The developed solution is tested and optimized in several field tests. The operation of the SMECON-Box with an energy management system will be examined as part of one field test. The control signal of the SMECON-Box is received by the energy management system and implemented in an optimized manner.

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, Germany

2021 – 2024