Derry City & Strabane District Council is part of a consortium that has been awarded funding from the EU’s Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme 2014-2020 to pilot innovative smart energy solutions.
The successful consortium contains a mix of universities, business and the public sector from Ireland, Northern Ireland, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, Norway and Canada, which put together a unique proposal totalling €1.4 million.
The Smart Energy Management in Remote Northern, Peripheral and Arctic Regions (SMARTIC) proposal brings together public authorities with universities and businesses to create flexible demonstration test-beds based on applying technologies first used in a smart city setting, e.g. Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Industrial Internet of Things.
Starting in May 2019, the project will last for three years and involve 11 partners from across Europe’s Northern Periphery and Arctic zone stretching from Finland through Sweden, Norway, Ireland, Northern Ireland and Iceland to Canada in North America.
As part of the project, Derry City & Strabane District Council will develop a smart grid pilot that integrates renewable energy, battery storage and smart energy management in the form of sensors and smart meters to monitor consumption and learn from user behaviour.
The Smart grid will consist of an electricity and heating network to power and heat a number of public buildings within a specific geographic boundary. Artificial Intelligence technology will record consumption data in conjunction with external weather conditions, energy performance of equipment, and learned user profile, to maximise energy efficiency and optimise the consumption of renewable energy produced.
As one of the project partners, ERNACT Chairperson, Brian Boyle, welcomed the approval stating, “The success has demonstrated the continuing value to local, regional and city authority regions working together in the vastly experienced ERNACT network to accelerate the digital transformation of their areas."
ERNACT EEIG Chairperson, Councillor Gus Hastings, added, "This is another example of what can be achieved by the North West Ireland city-region, working together on a cross border basis in the context of European Union Funding."