Press Release 035/2011

When the Washing Machine Talks to the Power Plant

Peer Energy Cloud Wins Trusted Cloud Competition of the Federal Ministry of Economics. Innova-tive Development of Cloud Enabled Smart Energy Micro Grids Is Envisaged.
Virtuelle „Marktplätze“ sollen den lokalen Ausgleich zwischen Erzeugung und  Verbrauch von Elektrizität innerhalb eines Subnetzes ermöglichen. (Foto: KIT)
Virtual “market places” are to allow for the local balancing of the generation and consumption of electricity within a subgrid. (Photo: KIT)

The Peer Energy Cloud partner consortium, consisting of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), AGT Germany, SEEBURGER AG, and the Municipal Utility of Saarlouis, is among the twelve winners of the “Trusted Cloud” technology and funding competition launched by the Federal Ministry of Economics. This was announced today at the CEBIT in Hanover. The project focusing on the development of solutions for the intelligent use of renewable energies will start immediately and have a duration of three years.

Private households consume about one third of the electricity produced by power plants and delivered via the grids of 700 municipal utilities. The consumer knows when he wants to do the washing or the dishwasher is supposed to work, the municipal utilities do not – not yet. Currently, electricity consumption at a certain time cannot be predicted exactly for every consumer by the electricity producers. Standard load profiles are unprecise, the load cycle can hardly be optimized, grid extension has to be based on peak loads, backup power plants are necessary.

Peer Energy Cloud is aimed at developing innovative methods for the measurement and prognosis of load profiles in order to optimize load flow and establish a virtual market place for electricity trading within a so-called micro grid. This market place allows for a local balancing of electricity production and consumption within a subgrid, which results in a direct relief of superordinate grid levels. This bottom-up approach contributes to enhancing grid stability and reduces the necessity of a cost-intensive extension of supraregional electricity grids.

“Automatic derivation of activity profiles for individual households based on power consumption data at certain sockets is a big challenge for artificial intelligence methods developed by DFKI. This innovative technology will only be accepted by the citizen, if comprehensive protection of the private sphere is ensured by the processing of these profiles in a “trusted cloud”,” says Professor Dr. Wolfgang Wahlster, CEO of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence, DFKI.

Professor Dr. Lutz Heuser, Managing Director of AGT Deutschland and Chief Technology Officer of AGT International, explains: “Winning the Trusted Cloud Computing technology competition confirms that we focus on innovative topics and viable technologies in the field of urban management. AGT offers integrated end-to-end systems solutions for the sustainable development of urban environments. Together with our partners, we will now work successfully on the development of solutions for the intelligent distribution and use of renewable energies.”

“With our consortium partners and the know-how available, we as a public utility are sure to make the project a success,” emphasizes Dr.-Ing. Ralf Levacher, Managing Director of the Municipal Utility of Saarlouis. The municipal utiliy of Saarlouis will be the application partner in field tests and conduct a pilot experiment with 500 households to evaluate the scaling. 

Holger Kirchner, Executive Director of the Research Division of SEEBURGER AG, explains: “As the leading supplier of products and solutions for the integration of enterprise software, we are pleased to take part and to assume a pioneer role. Based on the approaches of “B2B in the Cloud” from the THESEUS program, we can now contribute our experience and competences and enhance them in order to establish a novel market place for peer-to-peer energy trading. Here, sensor and energy data will be supplied for trustworthy value added services, for instance. We are convinced that this solution will be applied in various market segments and give new signals on the market.” 

“Information and communication technologies play a central role in the Peer Energy Cloud. Our project is aimed at creating a trustworthy environment, in which work is performed in a more secure and reliable manner,” underlines Professor Dr. Wilfried Juling, Chief Science & Information Officer (CSO/CIO), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).

Trusted Cloud Technology Competition
Under Trusted Cloud, the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) is funding the development and testing of innovative, secure, and legally compliant  cloud computing services with a total amount of about EUR 50 million. In addition, the project partners will provide own funds of about the same amount, such that a total of about EUR 100 million will be available. The BMWi “Trusted Cloud” technology program is part of the Cloud Computing action program launched by BMWi together with partners from industry and science in October 2010. Within the framework of pilot projects, innovative solutions for a secure use of cloud computing in various branches will be developed and tested within the next three years. The twelve winners cover the following  clusters:  basic technologies, industry, health, and public sector. The Peer Energy Cloud consortium is part of the industry cluster. 

Further Information on the Partners:

Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH (DFKI, German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence):



SAARLOUIS STADTWERKE (Municipal Utility of Saarlouis):

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT):

Contact Persons for the Press:

Reinhard Karger, M.A.
Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI

Phone +49 681 85775-5253
Fax: +49 681 85775-5485
Mobile: +49 151 1567 4571
E-mail:reinhard kargerJym4∂dfki de

Ursula Scheller
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)

Phone: +49 721 608-44865
Fax: +49 721 32550
E-mail:ursula schellerSgc4∂kit edu

Helmut Kranzmaier
AGT Germany/CNC AG

Phone: +49 30 408 17 66 02
Fax: +4930408176699
E-mail:helmut kranzmaierPdy9∂cnc-communications com

Andreas Petter,

Phone: +49 7252 96-0
E-mail:andreas petterMth5∂seeburger de

Saarlouis Stadtwerke
Dr. Ing. Ralf Levacher

Phone +49 6831 9596-482
Fax: +49 6831 9596-495
E-mail:levacherUxq1∂swsls de



Being “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility, and information. For this, about 9,600 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 23,300 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life. KIT is one of the German universities of excellence.

us, 01.03.2011


Monika Landgraf
Head of Corporate Communications, Chief Press Officer
Phone: +49 721 608-41150
Fax: +49 721 608-43658
presseVde1∂kit edu

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The press release is available as a PDF file.