Agent-Based Modelling of Electricity Market Infrastructures with Growing Share of Renewables by Extending an Existing Model to Germany and Europe - Initiation of International Collaboration with TU Delft (NL)

  • Project no. 3159
  • Duration 02/2013 - 11/2014

The work carried out in the DFG-prepatory project pursues different objectives on various strategic, methodic and content levels. In respect to the transition research of the Wuppertal Institute, it is a declared aim to explore the transitions to a sustainable energy system and to demonstrate, within the scope of political consulting, the conditions for a successful energy transition. This requires a particular focus on social aspects and actor behaviour. In methodological terms, this means to expand the previous modeling toolbox and the applied methods of energy research and to make a contribution to the socio-economical founding of the energy transition in Germany with the inclusion of actor behavior. A successful implementation of the transformation of energy systems needs to be analysed and a fundamental understanding for the behaviour of relevant actors of the electricity market, e.g. the investment strategies of the energy providers, is necessary as well. To do so, agent-based models are the most feasible method. In this project, two partial aspects were picked up and initial steps for their modeling were prepared:

  • Because of the massive expansion of renewable energy in the electricity sector, the dealing with high rates of intermittent renewable energy sources takes on increasing importance. For example, strategies of power plant operators to deal with excess wind electricity during periods of strong wind, either by the storage of electricity or hydrogen or by measures on the grid side, are highly interesting in this respect. One of the key factors to model these questions agent-based is the representation of the influence of renewable energy in electricity markets. A central methodological question is, how to better integrate the influence of intermittent renewable energy on the load profile through the consideration of temporally resolved feed-in time series. Within this project, first basics were compiled by the integration of the resulting development paths of renewable energy from an analysis of European-wide deployment scenarios for renewable energy with the agent-based model EMLab-Generation (developed at TU Delft) and the application on two regions, Germany and Europe (without Germany). A first analysis of interactions of the German with the European market was performed by simple exemplary questions.
  • Furthermore, an analysis and basic understanding of the general behaviour of relevant stakeholders, e.g. the investment strategies, is required in order to achieve a successful implementation of a transformation of energy systems. Therefore, the analysis and extension of relevant patterns of behaviour has been the intention of a master thesis in the course of this project, in which risk aspects were considered by Marvin Nebel within an investment algorithm of the EMLab-Generation (final completion September 2015).