Nationwide smart grid planned for Estonia

  • September 6, 2022
  • William Payne

Estonian telecoms firm Enefit Connect OÜ, the country’s main energy grid operator Elektrilevi OÜ and German smart grid platform envelio GmbH are collaborating on rolling out an intelligent grid platform nationwide across Estonia.

Enefit Connect will digitise its network planning processes with the help of the Intelligent Grid Platform enabling them to provide better service quality for Estonia’s biggest distribution grid operator Elektrilevi.

The process for new connections of distributed energy resources will be completely automated bringing customer service and the speed of the energy transition to the next level.

The project started in December 2021 and covers the full scope of Enefit Connect’s distribution network services to Elektrilevi whose distribution network cover up to 95% of the area of Estonia.

The Intelligent Grid Platform’s proprietary algorithms combine smart meter data with topological grid data to create an accurate, up-to-date digital twin of the grid. This high level of grid transparency will enable further automation of the smart grid. Geographical information is integrated into the platform to consider structural restrictions as roads or nature reservations, when automatically planning new grid connections.

The project reinforces Elektrilevi’s strategy of using digital solutions based on state-of-the-art technologies to make the interconnected grid future-proof for new renewable generation plants and loads such as charging points or heat pumps.

“Further automation of Enefit Connect’s grid planning processes will allow us to handle the rising numbers of new connection requests in the most efficient way, while ensuring the best network service for our clients” said Meelis Melder, Head of Planning and Project Management at Enefit Connect OÜ.

“Besides the technical evaluation and processing of new connection requests, also the planning of grid enhancements is an area where we see great potential in the IGP to support our decision-making process. Technological support is increasingly important to derive optimal investment decisions to guarantee to the society the most cost-efficient solution while securing the highest grid security,” said Meelis Melder.

“Estonia is a European role model in the field of digitisation,” said Dr Simon Koopmann, CEO and co-founder of envelio “Thus we are really excited about the opportunity to take digital grid planning there to the next level with Enefit Connect and Elektrilevi”.

envelio is a spin-off from RWTH Aachen University and provides the Intelligent Grid Platform (IGP) to distribution system operators enabling the next phase of the energy transition. Grid planning and operation processes are digitised and automated by envelio’s IGP. This automation enables a faster and more cost-efficient integration of renewable generation and charging points for electric vehicles into the energy system.