Aggregating Energy Flexibility for Demand-Side Management in Manufacturing Companies - A Two-Step Method
Towards greener production, manufacturing companies face several challenges, for example peak load shaving or flexible production planning as parts of demand-side management (DSM). DSM uses processes that can be shut down, shifted, or controlled. Advances in digitalization in the energy sector and manufacturing systems create transparency which in turn offers new opportunities to commercialize energy flexibility potentials as optimally and automatically as possible. The variety of flexibilities in manufacturing systems and various dependencies of different kinds of complex manufacturing processes complicate the modelling and aggregation of flexibility. To overcome this challenge, we developed a method for the aggregation of energy flexibilities that is based on a generic energy flexibility data model. The method proposes a two-step approach to aggregate flexibilities cost efficiently and considers manufacturing specific limitations. For cost-efficient aggregation, we use in the first step the merit-order model known from the energy industry and in the second step the bin-packing problem originating from combinatorial optimization, adapted according to the generic data model. The two-step approach allows energy flexibilities to be aggregated across industries, facilities, and systems, thus ensuring broad applicability.