Energy for tomorrow – city of the future

Cross-sectoral energy management in urban areas

The future energy system will be characterised by extreme surpluses of electrical power and adequate energy storage capacity to securely cover demand. New groups of consumers and types of vehicle propulsion, such as hydrogen-powered fuel cells, the use of decarbonised gases and bidirectional charging stations for electric cars, will shape the energy system.

However, in contrast to today’s predominantly centralised energy system, the future supply will be based on numerous decentralised systems – from offshore wind farms to solar panels on residential rooftops. Consequently, energy management is becoming increasingly important. In order to provide stability in such a complex system, energy research is focusing on management strategies and possible flexibilities in generation, consumption and storage. In particular, connecting buildings, mobility and gas technology with the electricity sector – referred to as sector coupling – opens up such options.

The demonstration model is intended to show the resulting questions and possible solutions, based on different scenarios. A city was chosen as an example power consumer and is simulated in simple terms in the model. This applies to both generators, such as photovoltaic and wind power plants, and to battery and gas storage facilities.

Power demand and generation are visualised, depending on the scenario, as are the actual energy flows between generators, consumers and storage systems. In addition, overall energy quantities are displayed as balances in the outer circle of the model, in the form of illuminated bars. Individual theme icons arranged around the city symbolise selected research priorities and the potential solutions developed at the DLR Institute of Networked Energy Systems. Content and information about these and other research topics can be accessed via tablet presentations.

German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Anne-Katrin Faasch · E-Mail: ·