The future of energy is green. Or, in case of E.ON’s Virtual Battery, really bright orange. Solar energy has been growing in popularity. It now became more affordable for most house owners due to decreasing costs and government subsidies.
Time to talk to Radomil Valeš, the lead of Creative Dock’s project for E.ON.
RADEK, CAN YOU PITCH ME THE PROJECT’S CORE INNOVATION IN A FEW SENTENCES?
Energy has to be stored, or very smartly and efficiently managed. Because storing in physical batteries doesn’t yet make economic sense, we’ve created this Virtual Battery. It provides about the same saving, but without the investment. And it does so through the smart management of the energy and going forward making the use of energy storage smarter.
Practically, you measure what you send to the grid and it’s later deducted from your energy bill. On top, in the Virtual Battery, you can store your created energy also longterm. Think producing energy in summer, and using it in winter, that’s the core idea.
AND WHAT’S THE DRIVING TREND BEHIND VIRTUAL BATTERY?
Basically, there are two underlying trends...
First and foremost, e-mobility is growing, fast––the car of the future will drive itself and run on electricity. But also, the production costs for solar panels are decreasing. This sets the future with a decentralized production of energy and it makes the technology more relevant for the broad mass.
Both trends call for a more efficient use and distribution of solar energy.
WHY SHOULD PEOPLE BE BOTHERED?
Well, apart from the obvious benefit of saving energy for later, users will automatically be provided with 100% renewable energies. It’s basically a subscription to green energy. So we build a community of future-minded individuals, providing each other with clean power.
And, of course, there are more practical benefits: users maintain their independence from market prices as they simply circumvent them, lead self sufficient lives, save money and help save the planet in the long run.
SPEAKING ABOUT THE LONG RUN, WHAT’S THE END GOAL HERE?
Making E.ON the market leader in solar energy! It may sound cheesy, but solar energy is the future, but the future starts now. And we help with the painful ‘Test & Learn’ process that’s at the beginning of each innovation.
WHAT WAS THE MOST CHALLENGING PART OF THE PROJECT?
The complexity – heavy regulation, complex business cases, and technological limitations. It’s not an easy market, I must say. But now it looks like that we learned what we had to learn and are making things happen.
ANY LAST WORDS FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE INTERESTED IN THE PROJECT?
Yes. You can see what exactly we are doing and signup at www.eonvirtualnibaterie.cz.