An Energy Blockchain
The vision of the German energy and IT company LichtBlick is to provide clean energy – anytime, anywhere, to anyone. Our idea even extends as far as saying that, in the future, people will exchange electricity with each other in the same ways that they already share their apartments, cars and tools today. And we don’t think that this future is all that far away.
Blockchain for Next-Door Energy
The key word here is blockchain. At the moment, blockchain primarily exists in the financial sector. It is a digital transaction that is decentrally and transparently distributed to a large number of computers. The deals or transactions can be carried out directly, meaning that intermediaries, such as banks, are no longer needed. Digital protocols ensure that the business transactions are documented at all times and with a high degree of accuracy. What already has caused some uneasiness among banks will certainly also spark some debate in the energy sector. Because energy, too, should be able to be sold simply and directly – and, above all, without an intermediary energy provider – from a private producer to a customer by way of a microgrid. A neighborhood project in New York demonstrates how this could work.
TransActive Grid in Brooklyn
The TransActive Grid project in Brooklyn connects two sellers of energy with 13 “customers.” Energy flows can be precisely monitored using smart meters. Blockchain takes on an administrative function, ensuring that agreements are kept and tracking who has used how much energy, and when. At the moment, the TransActive Grid is a neighborhood project. But according to the company LO3, which started the project, more than 130 buildings have since registered for TransActive Grid. In the future, owners of photovoltaic systems should be able to monitor their generation of solar energy and, in turn, be able to sell any surpluses.
What the Future Holds
It is presumably only a matter of time until technologies such as blockchain gain importance in the energy sector. In an increasingly digitized and networked world, innovations will quickly transfer from one industry into others and make business models that previously seemed impossible into a reality. We are sure of one thing: The energy world remains exciting and will continue to provide plenty of surprises and changes in the future. We at LichtBlick are keeping an eye on these developments and continuing to work on innovative solutions in order to accelerate the energy transition.
Find out more about LichtBlick’s international activities and our IT platform ‘SchwarmDirigent®’ at: www.lichtblick.com