Last year, Elia Group hosted its first ever hackathon in Brussels. Over 100 coders came together to help shape what the energy services of tomorrow could look like.
This year, the hackathon is back with a bang: we’ll be hosting our second
Hackathon from 16 to 18 October 2022 in Berlin - home to the headquarters of our German subsidiary, 50Hertz!
Have you got what it takes to develop the energy services of the future?
This year‘s challenges
Challenge 1 – Energy Controlling: Intelligent connectivity of flexible assets
Very short description
Let's find out how to connect assets - via the German smart meter infrastructure or OEM-interfaces - to exploit their flexibility potential! In a decarbonised energy system, flexibility will no longer be provided by fossil fuel power plants, but by consumers. Their flexibility potential can be harnessed by steering intelligent assets - such as home batteries, heat pumps and/or EV wallboxes – according to external signals.
Background informationWe see a massive ramp up of electric vehicles and heat pumps, which meets consumers’ needs for mobility and heating. At the same time, these assets inherently offer great flexibility potential for the electricity system. Digitalization, in particular harmonization of digital interfaces, is needed to ensure high scalability – which is a precondition to create impact on system and markets. Therefore, we are excited to see your ideas such as new business models for small-scale flexibilities or integration of multiple input signals! As system operator and market facilitator, we want to learn about connectivity’s complexity, identify possible bottlenecks within the value chain and co-develop pragmatic solutions.
Challenge 2 - Energy Tracking: Generating value for end consumers by using real smart meter load profiles
Very short description
Let’s build end consumer solutions based on real smart meter data! Consumers ask for more seamless provided transparency, for instance on continuous and instant feedback on beneficial or inexpedient behavioral changes. Consumers are aware of increasing electricity prices, and want real-time information about their energy costs and potential savings, greenness of consumed electricity and suggestion when to shift the consumption.
Background informationEnergy data services will play a major role in the engagement of customers for demand side management – to consume more when renewable energy supply is high and less when renewables generation is scarce. Within the framework of the Hackathon, we want to learn about and demonstrate the variety of possible data-driven energy services that enable the successful implementation of the consumer-centric market design, including Exchange of Energy Blocks (EoEB). Our long-term goal is to contribute to the development of the German market communication processes with tailor-made, value-adding consumer services.
Challenge 3 – Energy mapping: Visualising the impact of energy-intensive consumers on the gridThis challenge will focus on helping large consumers (businesses and industrial consumers) to visualise their impact on the local grid and help resolve dynamically occurring grid congestions. By using data on vertical grid load, benchmarking and clustering tools will allow their data to be anonymously compared with data from other consumers.
Teams who choose this challenge will be working on producing data visualisations.
Challenge 4 - Energy Coupling: enabling solutions for smart heating
Very short description
In order to decarbonise the energy demand, residential heating appliances will increasingly be electrified. The energy consumption patterns of these electric devices will be aligned with the availability of renewable energy in the grid through smart demand management. Your solution will help consumers to choose the best domestic heating technology by offering them personalised information about their associated cost and emissions savings. For this challenge, we will provide you with data sets related to temperature, energy consumption, electricity prices, renewable energy production, and grid integration and capacity.
Background information:Electrifying transport and heating is central to achieving European climate targets. The need to electrify additional sectors across society has been reinforced by rising oil and gas prices and more dynamic (and, at least temporally, cheap) electricity prices. By correctly anticipating increases in electricity consumption, at least on a day-ahead basis, system operators and suppliers will be able to improve the balancing of their supply portfolios. In turn, customers will be able to benefit from more transparent information about how weather patterns and the demand for heating services interact. A forecasting service of this kind should be useful for providing information about financially worthwhile electric heating opportunities and predicting their effect on both household finances and the climate.
- Official start and welcome
- Data presentation
- Networking and creative lounge
- Pitch session
- Key note on „How to finance your start-up idea?!“
Flashback to our first hackathon in Brussels
In October 2021, 14 teams signed up for the three-day event, working together to shape the energy services of the future. They were supported by Elia Group experts and coaches - and the hackathon was such a success that Belgian Minister of Energy, Tinne Van der Straeten, came to check in on the teams as they completed their projects.
Competition was tough, but one team - Green Bid - emerged as the winner. They focused on enhancing the Solar to You app, which aims to enable prosumers to sell any excess solar energy they produce to other consumers on the market. As part of their prize, the team were invited to develop their idea with The Nest.
I don‘t speak German; is that an issue?No, that is not a problem: the hackathon will be held entirely in English.
Should I apply on my own or as part of a team?
We're encouraging people to sign up for the hackathon on their own. We'll assign you to a team before it starts, so you'll have time to get to know your team members before working with them!
If you’re applying as part of a team, every team member has to register for the hackathon individually. Teams may include up to 6 members maximum; if your team has fewer than 4 members in it, we might add other participants to your team at a later stage.
I want to take part, but I am not free on all of the days of the hackathon. Can I still take part in it?Unfortunately not - all participants need to be free to take part in the full three days of the event.
Can I take part in the hackathon remotely?No. However, we will stream part of the hackathon - a panel discussion, which will be held on day two - online. We’ll also be posting regular updates (and a couple of vlogs) about the hackathon on social media and the hackathon website.
I would like to work on more than just one of the hackathon challenges - is this possible?Each team must pick one challenge to focus on. However, do chat to other groups and participants about their ideas and work! The hackathon is more about collaboration than it is about competition.
What travel arrangements are in place for participants?You are in charge of booking your own travel to and from the hackathon venue. We will provide reimbursements of up to €100 (for students based in Germany) or €150 (for students based outside of Germany) for your travel. We’ll let you know how to claim for a reimbursement once you have been officially invited to take part in the hackathon.