Distributed Energy Resources (DERs), or smaller power sources that can be aggregated to meet high energy demands, can help cut costs for businesses. And a new program built by Stanford University researchers is aiming to reduced energy expenses even further.
Called “ReMatch,” the program uses smart grid data to match groups of consumers with different kinds of distributed resources based on the customers’ energy use and the ability to construct resources in that area (such as solar panels and batteries). Then, according to arstechnica.com, “if a business district uses a lot of power around mid-day, for example, it might be worthwhile to offer incentives for that area to install solar panels. If a row of restaurants is open until 9pm, perhaps offering those businesses a solar-plus-battery option would be more cost-effective.”
ReMatch also has the ability to collect data on customer energy use by the hour. The program can, with this data, balance the enrollment of each kind of customer (heavy morning user or heavy evening user, for example) to even out demands on the grid.
The program was used on 10,000 customers in California, finding that using DER infrastructure in a targeted way reduces the levelized cost of electricity by nearly 50%.