WISE Public Lecture - Blockchain: A New Foundation for Distributed Energy Resources
Vikram Singh, Director of Advanced Planning, Alectra Utilities
Distributed Energy Resources (DERs), including solar, energy storage, electric vehicles, and home energy management devices, can contribute to a more efficient, sustainable energy future. However, currently, the tools and processes in place in the industry to securely manage contracts, transactions, and settlements are not positioned to be applied to many small DERs and it would be prohibitively expensive to do so. A mechanism for practically, cost effectively, and securely managing the contracts, transactions, and settlement activities of many DER participants in near-real time is needed in order to enable DERs to contribute to grid services, energy markets, and provide value to consumers.
Vikram will be discussing how Blockchain can be used as the foundation for an end-to-end platform that facilitates contracting, compliance, and settlement of distribution level market services using DERs. He will explore the complexities of integrating the distribution side of the electricity markets with the wholesale transmission side, and how Blockchain can provide transparency and trust to parties managing distributed assets in real time. He will deliver a live demo of the “Spark” platform, a Blockchain enabled mobile app co-developed with IBM that allows customers to leverage their EVs, solar panels or battery storage systems to deliver real time energy services to the market. He will also discuss Alectra’s decision to compensate customers using a token-based value exchange system – effectively allowing for an open, market based exchange to trade energy for goods and services from any merchant throughout Canada.
Vikram Singh is currently the Director of Advanced Planning at Alectra Utilities. In his current role, Vikram focuses on identifying ground-breaking new energy solutions that can be piloted within Alectra’s territory and eventually transitioned into full-scale commercial offerings that benefit both the customer and the grid. Prior to joining Alectra, Vikram held a variety of Senior Management roles within the energy sector. He most recently served as the Director of Business Development at a US technology fund where he led the technical and commercial development of a revolutionary new fuel injector design to be applied within the distributed generation sector. He also served as a senior member of the management team assigned to finance and implement the commercialization strategy of one of the world’s first utility scale dish-Stirling CSP technologies. Vikram holds a Bachelor of Engineering and an MBA from INSEAD in Singapore/France.