Sandra Metsis & Catarina Pereira
After being on hold and facing the challenges of organizing an international mobility during a global pandemic, SMAGRINET Mobility Program was launched in the summer of 2021 with students from Germany, Lithuania and Slovenia joining the companies in Estonia to put the knowledge gathered in their studies and SMAGRINET Modules into practice.
The hosts included: Elektrilevi (the largest network operator in Estonia), international energy and automation technology group ABB, Fusebox - a platform for managing and trading of electrical flexibility for the balancing of electricity grids), and Enefit Green (one of the largest producers of renewable energy in the Baltics).
Students from Kaunas University of Technology and Technische Universität Dresden, who had passed the “Artificial Intelligence in a Smart Grid with Prosumers '' module in SMAGRINET, implied their knowledge in Elektrilevi. Saule from Kaunas worked on the NetFix project- smart meter integration into the electrical grid. She analysed the differences between the smart meters with the goal to improve the AI model and admitted that the knowledge from SMAGRINET Module was definitely useful: “The understanding of AI and its workings as well as different issues arising in the probability models absolutely helped to better understand the task and having that prior knowledge served well when trying to find answers to different problems that arose while working on my tasks.”
Lorenz from TU Dresden was working on analysing flexibility use-cases to understand basic calculations related to connection of generation to distribution networks and cost-benefit in regard to flexibility usage.
SMAGRINET “Connection Planning in Smart Grids” module students from Univerza v Ljubljani and Technische Universität Berlin found challenges in Elektrilevi, ABB, Enefit Green and Fusebox. Jovica from Ljubljana joined Elektrilevi to analyse the effects that charging electric vehicles have on the distribution network.
Matevž, Power Engineering and Mechatronics student from Ljubljana, joined ABB Electrification Business and got himself familiarised with BESS (Battery Energy Storage System), its control strategy, gained a better understanding of communication protocols, and new PLC programming approaches. “Theoretical knowledge from the SMAGRINET module was useful in my tasks. Especially courses Electrical Vehicle Impact on Distribution Network, Multi-energy system including PV, Smart Grid Technologies” he brought out.
Another University of Ljubljana student Karin dug herself into renewable energy in Enefit Green: “With Renewable energy it is really important to have a storage solution. One of my tasks was looking into available storage solutions and I got to use the knowledge I got in the ‘Integration of Energy Storage Technologies’.”
Bahman, from TU Berlin, took up the challenge in the startup world and joined Fusebox helping them in integrating consumers and energy systems to enable better integration of renewables and reduce CO2.
Feedback was positive from both sides - companies and students. Several challenges in the industry were solved and good practice was added to theory. We did start with some hesitation regarding opening up and international travel. But taking all the safety measures into account, we have managed to kick off the Mobility Program with success.
Autumn is bringing the students back to university and lectures, SMAGRINET has to adapt and find concentrated solutions to offer students a glimpse of industry and institutions in the field. This means hosting roadshows and finding hybrid solutions.
In October, the students of Economic Operation and Societal Challenges Module from TalTech and Université de Lorraine has chance to join the first SMAGRINET hybrid roadshow. included discussions with European Commission representatives and EURELECTRIC and visiting EDF Power Networks Lab near Paris.
Read more about the first Roadshow here.
During the rest of the year SMAGRINET roadshows are involving more students and providing for example an overview of the energy system in Estonia, taking us to visit different production facilities and getting in action in NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence to understand the security perspectives of Energy.