Blockchain is one of the most transformative technologies of this generation and is being utilized in multiple ways across several industries. From fintech to supply chain, the tech has helped make every process immutable and seamless.
One of the most notable use cases of blockchain tech is its role in helping the transition towards green energy-based systems. A number of blockchain-based projects are working with green energy and are changing the Renewable Energy Industry, for the better.
The latest to play a part in this global energy transition race is telecom giant Vodafone and blockchain non-profit Energy Web. The goal of this collaboration is to improve the integration of renewable and distributed energy assets within power grids using blockchain technology and secure IoT connectivity.
SIM cards, IoT, Blockchain
As per the May 26 announcement, Vodafone’s SIM technology and Energy Web’s blockchain-based operating system to act as a communication channel for renewable and distributed assets like wind turbines, batteries, heat pumps and solar panels. The system is quite similar to how telecom companies use SIM cards to identify mobile phones.
This SIM-based identity system can be used to turn the increasingly distributed capacity of the grid into an information and control boon for the utility, said Walter Kok, CEO of the Zug, Switzerland-based Energy Web Foundation.
Kok added that if these distributed assets carry SIM cards, it would allow them to also carry proof of identity to the operators via public-private keys. He explained:
“If I say I’m a battery, [the grid operator] can be sure I actually am a battery and that I behave in this way. And then once I know that I can actually start using this asset in how I manage my grid. So that is what we’re building, and of course what we’ve done through the partnership with Vodafone.”
Energy Web launched its Energy Web Chain back in 2019. The platform is an enterprise-grade open-source blockchain, designed to address the electricity sector’s regulatory, operational and market needs. The company has created the largest energy blockchain ecosystem comprising of utilities, grid operators, renewable energy developers, corporate energy buyers and others.
The partnership with Vodafone will further enable grid operators to recognise distributed energy assets connected to power grids and hence maintain stability.
David Palmer, Vodafone Blockchain lead, said that the SIM’s private key infrastructure allows devices to sign transactions on the Energy Web blockchain while remaining secure. As per Palmer, this could lead to the creation of “a new digital energy marketplace” powered by blockchain in the long run.
According to Erik Brenneis, Vodafone Business IoT director, the collaboration with Energy Web will help ensure that “assets are easily able to be connected to, and managed by, energy and communication networks around the globe.”
“We are proud to work together with Energy Web to make this a reality,” he added.