Towards an open case study for modeling and simulation of multi-energy systems at district level

  • genre: break-out-group
  • title: Towards an open case study for modeling and simulation of multi-energy systems at a district level (2 hrs)
  • presenter: @mathieu-vallee @Pimprenelle
  • description:

This breakout group aims at sharing an open case study designed for analyzing and comparing various energy systems alternatives at the level of a district, city neighborhood, or industrial site.

At this level, a wide range of decisions can be investigated regarding the choice of energy supply, storage, and distribution networks (including district heating and cooling).

Although similar case studies are investigated in many scientific works, there is a consensus that the field is lagging behind in establishing shared standards, as well as open data, case studies, and benchmarks to facilitate the analysis and comparison of solutions [1].

The breakout group aims at gathering practitioners in energy system modeling interested in establishing such reference solutions.

We will in particular enable participants to experiment with an Open case study currently in development [2–4], to provide feedback on the initiative as well as ideas for future development and relevant other works / code.

The case study considers a complete analysis, from the generation of load profiles (using open source alternatives), the pre-design of system architectures (based on LP/MILP optimization [2]), to the fine tuning of model predictive control using detailed physical models and co-simulation (based on the FMU standard, as well as Modelica, Matlab/Simulink, EnergyPlus modeling [3–4]).

The outcome of the workshop could be in establishing new collaborations for further development/variants of the case study, as well as collective authoring of a paper on the topic.

  • background:

Mathieu Vallée is a researcher at CEA Liten, working on district heating networks and multi-energy systems at district level for the past ten years.

He is an active participant in the International Energy Agency working group on District Heating and Cooling, and a co-author of the Guidebook for the Digitalisation of District Heating [1].

The activities proposed in the breakout group are related to the conclusion of this work regarding the lack of shared standards, data, and benchmarks.

This work is partially supported by the PEPR TASE HyMES project, as well as by internal projects at CEA.

[1] IEA DHC, Annex TS4, “Guidebook for the Digitalisation of District Heating”, 2023.
[2] J. Fitó, M. Vallée, A. Ruby, and E. Cuisinier, “Robustness of district heating versus electricity-driven energy system at district level: A multi-objective optimization study,” Smart Energy, vol. 6, p. 100073, May 2022, doi: 10.1016/j.segy.2022.100073.
[3] L. Rava, et al., “Assessment of Varying Coupling Levels between Electric & Thermal networks at District Level using Co-Simulation and Model-predictive Control,” presented at the ECOS conference 2022, Copenhagen, Denmark.
[4] M. Vallée et al., “An efficient co-simulation and control approach to tackle complex multi-domain energetic systems: Concepts and applications of the PEGASE platform,” presented at the ECOS 2019 conference, Wroclaw, Poland.


Hi Mathieu,

thank you for proposing the topic, I would be really happy to participate in this breakout group. We want to look into gathering existing tools and methods and bring them into workflows, currently also with a focus on urban scale energy systems focusing on geothermal integration (that’s why I suggested the breakout group about granularity and reusability of tools/workflows and data, New project - new tools?! How granular should our tools and data processing workflows be to allow for reusability?).

So @etienne.cuisinier, in case both suggestions would be accepted (and if there is enough room for all the participants I guess) it would be really nice, if these two groups would not be in parallel.

Thanks! :slight_smile:


Thanks, I agree that it would be great to attend both breakout groups, i.e. that they are not at the same time :slight_smile:

1 Like

Basically, the pypsa community set excellent standards for large scale energy systems, transferring this knowledge to the local scale ones would be really good, looking forward to it!

Hi there!

I was wondering what would be the best practice for sharing some material in advance of the workshop. I assume Google Drive is not the prefered option, so I was thinking about etherpad or so, but maybe something more graphical would be nice as well.

Since I am not used to the community, I thought I’d ask here were you would like to have stuff (notes, slides) available.

Or maybe just create a GitHub repo ?

Thanks for feedback, and looking forward to OpenMod next week!

Hi @mathieu-vallee

You can distribute material by uploading files to this forum. There are clear limitations of course. And Creative Commons CC‑BY‑4.0 licensing is mandatory. There is an openmod GitHub account, see here. But I don’t have other details.

Regarding an etherpad‑like service. It would be possible to create a private topic on this forum limited to workshop participants and then make the top posting a “wiki posting” editable by anyone with access. Again clear limitations there too.

On the upside, use of the forum keeps the material together.

Regarding GitHub, the log‑in process is rigorous these days with two‑factor authentication and special apps and/or hardware required (no doubt driven by United States government concerns about software exports to hostile regimes). For instance, I can only log‑in from my laptop, which I will leave at home. HTH, R

A bit more info on this breakout group organization.

During the breakout group, we will have 2 goals:

  1. Share an (soon to be open) case study on a multi-energy system at district scale, from which we expect to create a (series of) benchmarks for comparing works in district energy optimization and simulation

  2. Get feedback from openmod participants on various aspects of this benchmarking initiative

To reach these goals, we propose to organize the breakout group as follows:

  1. Presentation of the context, objective and actual case study [20 min, Mathieu Vallée]

  2. Short demo on the case study using Persee [10 min, Pimprenelle Parmentier]

  3. Work session where participants will be dispatched (at random by groups of 2) to discuss/react on 5 topics [10 min each – 50 minutes in total]

  • Which Open Source benchmarks in the energy domain could bring inspiration ?
  • What data sources/tools would you recommend for generating load profiles/energy price scenarios (at district level) ?
  • What do you think are the pro/cons for using Persee vs. other tools for the design optimisation / operationnal optimisation in this benchmark ?
  • What simulation tools would you recommend for the various domains involved in the benchmark (buildings, district heating grid, power grid, …) ?
  • Describe the pro & cons of the 3 options for disseminating an open benchmark
  1. In parallel to the work session, Mathieu and Pimprenelle will be able to propose a personalized demos on the Persee/Pegase tools and the on-going work for hosting a running example of the case study on the OTE/UGA web servers.

The material collected during the breakout group will be collected on the openmod forum (or other platform) for further interactions with participants.

We also intend to provide access and support to researchers interested in experimenting with the case study after the workshop. Please get in touch with us if you want to dive deeper!