EIT Digital's Smart Energy Community seeks solutions for the European future of energy systems

Dr. Heiko Lehmann (EIT Digital)

Idea Challenge Jury (f.r.t.l.): Dr. Heiko Lehmann (EIT Digital), Loredana Racanella (Enel SpA), Jan Michael Hess (Ecosummit), Dr. Jan-Olaf Willums (InSpire Group), Dr. Michael Hochholzer (Siemens Venture Capital), Dr. Oliver Weinmann (Vattenfall Europe Innovation GmbH) and Claudius Seidel (EIT Digital)

Idea Challenge winners (f.l.t.r.): David Beijer (Peeeks) Lukas Bauer (has.to.be) Margit Lillemaa (Semu)

The Smart Energy Community regularly brings together promising start-ups, industrial players and scientists in the field of Smart Energy technologies. It is the goal to stimulate European innovation and business creation within the field of Smart Energy. On November 4, 2015 in Berlin the strategic framework of the European digital energy sector was discussed in an expert Round Table (hosted by EIT Digital) with Dr. András Siegler, Director Energy, DG Research and Innovation of the European Commission as well as with representatives from large corporates, academia and the start-up scene. 

Round Table defines solutions for future smart energy sector

The Round Table was set-up to distil strategic recommendations for European Information and Communication Technology (ICT) innovations that foster the Smart Energy domain. Taking into account the natural and economic European diversity in this topic, the lively discussion came up with a number of concrete conclusions. They range from the development of standards and norms to a higher weight for the customers’ perspective to an improved afterlife of the results of funded projects including methodology learnings. "With this Round Table we wanted to find out, whether Europe would be prepared to listen to what its youngest innovation institute has to say. We are very proud of the attendance and firmly believe that we came up with meaningful results that will be further compiled in a report," explains Dr. Heiko Lehmann, EIT Digital Action Line Leader Smart Energy Systems.

The smartest Energy start-ups 2015

The Idea Challenge Finals 2015 in the category Smart Energy Systems complemented the event. Out of about 460 start-ups that applied, 8 promising Smart Energy start-ups were selected to pitch in front of an expert jury. Although, start-ups may still be part of rank and file in the game of influencing the energy system, they introduce innovations to the markets that may sustainably change the digital energy sector in the future. The three winners of the Idea Challenge in the category Smart Energy Systems are: has.to.be from Austria received the first prize with their platform be.Energised. Second place was awarded to Peeeks from the Netherlands, third place to Semu from Estonia.

  1. be.Energised is a management and billing platform for charging stations that enables anyone to operate, monitor and control a charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. The jury was enthusiastic about the convincing business model and the clarity of the pitch
  2. Peeeks promises to achieve 10-40 per cent energy cost saving by switching industrial processes such as cooling houses, ice skating rinks or oil terminals automatically and intelligently.
  3. Semu, represented by Margit Lillemaa, developed a home automation system that aims to improve the life of visually impaired and blind people by making their homes safer and the energy usage more efficient. 

The afternoon was not only filled with pitches from the Idea Challenge start-ups, but also included an extensive networking session and start-up exhibition that was also joined by the Smart Energy Systems Innovation Activities of EIT Digital. They develop smart technology solutions that will help to tackle the transition of the European energy market in the future. The activities work on:

  • Decentralized Micro Grid Infrastructure Innovation Center
  • Hybrid Energy Grid Management
  • User Friendly Scalable Smart Distribution Grid Management Solution
  • Energy-Aware Network Infrastructure
  • Integration of Smart Power Controllers

Interested companies are welcome to join the vibrant and growing Smart Energy Community to exchange ideas, visions and business cards at the community events. 
Please contact Smart Energy System Action Line Leader Dr. Heiko Lehmann


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