A next step for Energysense: A living lab for innovative SMEs

Groningen –  Energysense is pleased to announce it has received a €360 000 grant from SNN (the alliance  of the Northern Netherlands Provinces to strengthen the economy of the North). These funds will support the development of Energysense’s role as living lab for innovations, making the project even more accessible for small and medium-sized entreprises.

Energysense is a large scale longitudal research infrastructure –to be based on 10,000 Dutch households-  that will map everything there is to know on Dutch energy behaviour. It is a flagship project of Energy Academy Europe, pursued by the University of Groningen.  Energysense will develop further as a living lab for innovative energy products and services for households. ‘This is a golden opportunity for SMEs to put themselves at the forefront of energy innovation and to strengthen their market position,’ says Dr Anne Beaulieu, programme manager of Energysense. ‘They can become leaders in the development of smart meter and data-applications, working with households and using our data-infrastructure.’

Households take up some 25% of daily energy consumption in The Netherlands, and by 2020, some 80% of Dutch households will have smart meters installed in their homes. This new technology and its associated data mean that innovative technologies, products and services can make a major difference in household energy efficiency. These can range from new financial services, to feedback systems for behavioural change, to technical solutions for energy storage. Energysense can help SMEs work with households and tap into this potential, thereby speeding up the energy transition.

Data are increasingly important to the energy system. Data on energy consumption is relevant for physical networks, but also for end-user connections (smart meter-households), and applications like ‘smart’ appliances that switch on upon optimum availability of energy supply or battery storage of electric cars.
Today, innovations in energy use and applications are moving fast: smart meters, hybrid pumps, energy storage, internet-of-things, mobility, sustainable building, serious games. This is only the beginning of an increasing demand for products and services that can make smart meters actually operate smartly and enable households to manage their energy consumption.
Energysense will be offering a unique platform for innovative SMEs, acting as a interface and providing selective access to data and to households for testing new and innovative products and services. If households chose to become involved in the living lab activities, they will in turn be closely involved in the development of new products and services and play a significant role in the energy transition. This will open up a multitude of opportunities for society and for businesses, especially for SMEs – a proven source of innovations..

The living lab function of Energysense will be developed in cooperation with EnTranCe, Vereniging Slim Wonen met Energie, CEDEL and THINGS IO.


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