AutoGrid has collaborated with Japanese company ENERES to develop the world’s largest energy storage-based virtual power plant (VPP) in terms of asset volume.

The project is expected to add more than 10,000 assets to the VPP during 2020-21, with the option of rapid scaling in subsequent years.

AutoGrid CEO Dr Amit Narayan said: “Japan is in the midst of a massive market transformation that requires much greater supplies of flexible energy. We’re excited to team with ENERES to provide a scalable platform to meet this critical challenge.”

As per the terms of the partnership, AutoGrid has agreed to supply ENERES with VPP and customer engagement software to aggregate, dispatch and market energy from demand response (DR) and distributed energy resources (DERs).

Additionally, AutoGrid will supply a custom-branded, Cloud-based software solution, which will enable ENERES to manage all aspects of the VPP ranging from program configuration, customer enrolment, monitoring, forecasting and measurement and verification (M&V).

In order to support customer marketing, signup and participation, ENERES will make use of the AutoGrid Flex platform for artificial intelligence (AI) driven DER management as well as AutoGrid Engage.

The first phase of the project is slated to begin later this year and will result in a large, dispatchable DR portfolio.

ENERES president and representative director Masahiro Kobayashi said: “As solar and storage costs continue to decline and new capacity markets open, DER and DR resources are becoming a key component of our daily operations.

“AutoGrid Flex gives us a proven, AI-driven comprehensive distributed energy management solution that allows us to fully leverage our own DER and DR resources and those of our customers in real time.”

During the second phase, ENERES will deploy a complete VPP to aggregate behind-the-meter DERs, which include solar photovoltaic panels, energy storage systems, combined heat and power units and electric vehicle batteries, along with DR.

The partnership will enable ENERES to combine DR resources into large enough blocks of energy to sell into capacity markets.