Projects

Open Energy System (OES) Project

Given our extreme energy dependency on all levels, the sheer scale of transformations needed to shift from fossil fuels to renewables is almost inconceivable. Global warming and the rapid depletion of fossil fuels have been boosting research towards finding sustainable ways of harnessing natural energy, but it is unreasonable to think that installing enough renewable generating capacity and consolidating real-time decision making alone can do the trick. Due to the inherently variable nature of the most promising renewable sources, i.e. solar and wind, the technological challenge has progressed from energy generation to a much wider research field comprising energy storage, microgrid integration and distributed power management.

 

CSL is pushing this evolution one step further with a whole new type of bottom-up power system that we named Open Energy Systems (OES). Over the last years, a variety of projects in both developed and developing projects have been conducted and formed our understanding of OES – a highly distributed and modular power system that can live up to the challenges that a complete shift towards renewable would imply.



Rethinking energy systems across the world

 

In developed countries, we focus on redefining the conventional electricity grid. For instance, in Okinawa we have built an OES platform on which we are currently testing autonomous DC power exchange between 19 inhabited houses [see project page].

 

In developing countries, the focus is on off-grid power systems that can be built bottom-up, with minimal infrastructural cost. Under the motto “Act Beyond Borders” Sony CSL has conducted field demonstration experiments from the very beginning of the OES project.

 



OES concept and approach

 

We envision OES on 3 pillars:

 

Sustainable:

Managing renewable energy sources, that are geographically distributed and of which the output is, thanks to batteries

Dependable:

Exploiting locality of generation and consumption and increasing self-sufficiency by interconnecting system in a bottom-up and autonomous way

Affordable:

Starting with small yet expandable system in the form of bottom-up, autonomous, and interconnected

Activities

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