Introducing load-shift capabilities for smart thermostats

Enabling Norwegian energy suppliers Gudbrandsdal Energi and Eidsiva Marked now enable consumers to automatically shift their use of electrical heat off peak-hour pricing to periods when the price is lower, through a partnership with Eliq

The capabilities are introduced as an upgrade in the energy monitoring app, which already enables customers to access energy consumption data from smart meters and receive advice on savings. The technology, which is developed by Eliq, is initially tested on 300 homes in a pilot that has been going on since the end of 2018 and was featured last week in an article in Smart Energy International.

Homes are fitted with an off-the-shelf smart thermostat, in this case an infrared controller from MClimate, which can be used to manage air conditioners – or – in this part of the world – heat pumps. An algorithm adjusts the heat pump depending on the spot price in the market, hour by hour, allowing users to save an estimated up to NOK 700 (c. €70) per year.

Our customers like the fact that we can offer automated savings for them, both in terms of saved costs but also our personal carbon footprint” —Lars Eivind Stagrim Håve, Product manager at Eidsiva

The app already offers consumers an overview of their energy consumption, including their estimated electrical heating spend, based on energy disaggregation technology. With the thermostat development, the user within the same app now choose how much they want to save, by adjusting a simple slider, showing them directly how much money, their chosen settings are estimated to save.

Joakim Botha, an Eliq Founder who heads up business development in Norway comments on this feature; “The behavioural science piece is key to making this work. Showing directly how much money you’ll save at the point of making the decision to let the technology adjust your temperature is the way we get users to opt-in to something like this. Of course, they first have to trust their energy provider.

The Scandinavian electricity market is among the most advanced in the world and allows consumers to access and settle on the hourly wholesale Nordpool Spot market where pricing is different every hour of every day of every year.

The customer journey begins with making energy data simple and understandable, but the ultimate goal is to help utilities address the untapped potential in the home for both energy efficiency and flexibility by making it easy for them to make smarter choices.” —Håkan Ludvigson, CEO and Founder of Eliq

Mobile apps are making Time-of-Use tariffs more visible and are available through other Eliq customers in France and Spain, such as GreenYellow – but the static TOU tariffs offered in these countries are not sufficient to tackle the challenges of tomorrow’s electricity system. The past year has seen hourly, smart tariffs being trialled by innovative utilities also outside of Scandinavia, famously the Octopus Energy’s Agile tariff and TIDE by Green Energy UK.

Read the press release as PDF
2019-03-11 Eliq partners with Norwegian utilities to introduce load-shift capabilities for smart thermostats [PDF]