Duan, R. and G. Deconinck: Multi-agent Coordination for Market Environments. Chapter 07 in Securing Electricity Supply in the Cyber Age. Exploring the Risks of Information and Communication Technology in Tomorrow's Electricity Infrastructure. Series: Topics in Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality, Vol. 15 (2010). [s.l.]: Spinger, 2010. Eds.: Z. Lukszo; G. Deconinck and M.P.C. Weijnen. ISBN: 978-90-481-3593-6. International Bookchapter
The financial crisis has deflated oil prices, prolonging the attractiveness of fossil fuel combustion as a method of energy generation. However, mankind faces a future of a hot, flat, and crowded world , making a critical transformation away from the use of fossil fuels imperative. After years of research and experimentation, a number of Renewable Energy Sources (RES) have become technically available as alternatives. Yet a pivotal task which still needs to be carried out is that of adapting the existing electricity infrastructure – still a very efficient energy delivery facility – to allow it to incorporate emerging RES openly and equally. To stimulate the widespread adoption of RES, which would result in the evolution to next generation infrastructures for electricity, incentives should include economic and political measures rather than only technology. In this chapter we summarize the properties of different RES and introduce the ‘microgrid’, a grid architecture allowing high RES penetration. We also analyze the prevailing electricity market structure and describe existing economic incentives for RES accommodation. Most importantly, we elaborate on the multi-agent model of electricity infrastructures based on the microgrid and its coordination mechanism within the market environment.