Comparison of two residential Smart Grid pilots in the Netherlands and in the USA, focusing on energy performance and user experiences

Uche Obinna, Peter Joore, Linda Wauben, Angèle Reinders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
37 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Two residential Smart Grid pilots, PowerMatching City, Groningen (NL) and Pecan Street, Austin Texas (USA) have been compared regarding their energy performance and the experiences of users in these pilots. The objective of the comparison was to gain new insights that could support the successful deployment of future residential Smart Grids. Measured data on electricity generation and electricity consumption of households in 2013 and 2014 were evaluated. Existing reports with results of surveys of users were also analyzed. The energy performance revealed that the average domestic electricity consumption of households in PowerMatching City was lower compared to Pecan Street (2.6 GW h versus 10.1 GW h). At the same time, households in Pecan Street generated a higher amount of electricity compared to PowerMatching City (6.8 GW h versus 1.14 GW h). Households in Pecan Street consumed on average, 8% less electricity with respect to the USA average household domestic electricity consumption of 10.9 GW h; while households in PowerMatching City consumed 19% less electricity compared to the Dutch average household domestic electricity consumption of 3.1 GW h. Households in PowerMatching City appeared to have a higher potential to contribute to electricity demand and supply balancing, because their electricity consumption from the grid was largely reduced with increased self-generation. User experiences revealed that end-users in both pilots preferred technologies that automatically shift their energy use, since this requires minimal effort from them. We conclude that the pattern of households’ electricity generation and consumption in Smart Grid pilot projects, and their contribution to peak load balancing in the electricity network is largely influenced by existing Smart Grid set-ups, local climate and related needs for heating and cooling, the average capacity of installed energy generating technologies and the prevailing energy behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-275
Number of pages12
JournalApplied Energy
Volume191
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • Electricity consumption
  • Electricity generation
  • End-users
  • Residential applications
  • Smart Grids

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