Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Enerport - Blockchain Energy Trading Project launched

Imagine a future where Irish consumers will be able to gift or sell their solar power across their neighbourhood as well as sharing and managing their own electricity in a myriad of new ways. EnerPort, a new project launched today (Wednesday) at the International Energy Research Centre (IERC) Annual Conference, aims to accelerate peer-to-peer energy trading in Ireland through blockchain technology.

Led by the IERC, and in partnership with SFI’s INSIGHT Centre at NUI Galway, EnerPort also involves a number of indigenous companies including Systemlink Technologies, MSemicon, and Verbatm. The project consortium will investigate blockchain technology as a solution to how energy can be traded, and how to potentially reward users for saving energy as well as managing small scale transactions between neighbours who generate electricity.

Speaking from the IERC Conference in Cork, IERC Director Prof. Tony Day said, “The EnerPort project will prototype new ways to address the challenges currently slowing the progression of distributed networks. It will provide evidence of how policies, regulations and physical networks need to evolve to ensure Irish citizens have the strongest level of control on their energy bills. Ultimately, EnerPort provides a unique opportunity for Ireland to position itself as a research leader in an area which is expected to have significant growth in the near future.”

As our energy market grows, challenges include how to trust and validate the transactions made in distributed energy networks, how to enable stronger consumer engagement within that market and how to free up the trading regulations within our local networks. Responding to these challenges, IERC’s Enerport will investigate how technologies, such as blockchain and the Internet of Things (IoT), provide a platform that enables companies and consumers to trade on a regional and even national scale.

"Peer-to-peer energy trading is changing the way we think about energy. The possibilities are huge: being able to gift some of your electricity to a friend, sell some of your solar or wind power to a neighbour, and more. We are delighted to bring our expertise from the Power Electronics Research Centre and the INSIGHT Centre for Data Analytics in both energy and data science to this joint project with the IERC and its industry partners. Dr. Thakur has been one of our pioneering researchers in the area of blockchain, which is extremely suited towards the management of (energy) resource trading and it’s facilitation of 'smart contracts' between stakeholders," said Dr. John Breslin, Senior Lecturer, NUI Galway.

In terms of innovation, there are a limited number of existing projects worldwide which have been able to demonstrate the hardware and software requirements for energy trading and its applications in the context of the distributed grid. This project will provide scalable proof-of-concept demonstrations for blockchain-based peer-to-peer energy trading in the distributed grid and will address key challenges around hardware and software requirements and protocols, as well as issues around markets, regulations and policy.

Dr. Matthew Kennedy, Head of Strategy and Business at the IERC, described the EnerPort research challenges: “Ireland is experiencing a rapid growth in the deployment of technologies such as energy storage systems, electric vehicles, and smart home devices. We are investigating if existing energy markets are flexible or decentralised enough to accommodate this scale of integration of distributed grid technologies. Peer-to-peer energy trading, using distributed ledger technology, can potentially allow for a more localised energy balancing and improved integration of these distributed grid technologies. Such balancing requires an understanding of how smart meter technologies interact with blockchain, and how consumer trading decisions interact and communicate with a cloud based blockchain.”

Terry Madigan, Director of Systemlink Technologies, an industry partner in the project, outlined the potential impact of Enerport: “The EnerPort project will address important research questions relating to the future of energy trading in a world of vastly increased micro generation and consumption.”

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

SXSW 2018 - Ridecell wins SXSW Interactive Innovation award.

 Ridecell Inc., the leading platform developer for carsharing and ridesharing operators, today announced that its Autonomous Operations Platform was chosen as a winner of the 2018 South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Innovation Awards. The top contender in the New Economy category, the Ridecell platform was selected by the SXSW judges as the most exciting tech development amongst sharing economy award finalists.

"The SXSW conference has a recognized pedigree as the forum for groundbreaking technology introductions," said, Aarjav Trivedi, Ridecell CEO. "Ridecell is thrilled to be chosen from such a highly competitive field of New Economy finalists for our Autonomous Operations Platform. While many innovators, including our own Auro brand, are teaching vehicles how to drive, the Ridecell Autonomous Operations Platform teaches fleets of driverless vehicles how to maintain themselves and manage their own emergency situations."
The award-winning Ridecell platform, publicly announced in October 2017, enables on-demand ridehailing and automates operations for autonomous vehicle fleets. Designed to handle rider onboarding, routine vehicle deployment, user accounts, and response to emergency situations, Ridecell offers fleet owners an intelligent platform that fulfills ride requests and handles scheduled and unscheduled refueling, maintenance, cleaning, and roadside assistance. The platform manages operations on both public roads or on private roadways, like college and corporate campuses, residential communities, and resort properties.

The Ridecell platform is available to any autonomous vehicle or service provider who is scaling their test fleets and working towards an on-demand pilot or planned service offering. It's also enables existing Ridecell carsharing and ridesharing customers to accommodate the addition of autonomous vehicles without the need to change the underlying platform.

Now in its 21st year, the annual SXSW Interactive Innovation Award recognizes "the most exciting tech developments in the connected world." One of five finalists considered from amongst hundreds of applicants in the New Economy category, the Ridecell platform is currently powering autonomous shuttle service on the campus of Santa Clara University in Silicon Valley and for a leading driverless fleet operating on public roads in the US.

Headquartered in San Francisco, the company provides an intelligent software platform that empowers mobility operators, including OEMs, car rental companies, auto clubs, cities, transit agencies, dealer groups, and private fleets to launch, expand, and maximize the utilization of their own ridesharing, carsharing, and autonomous fleet services. End-to-end integration and automation accelerate time to market, enabling Ridecell customers to launch mobility services quickly, operate efficiently, and scale revenues as business grows.
Founded in 2009 with a team of more than 100 professionals in the US, Europe, Asia and Australia, Ridecell is backed by investment funding from BMW i Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, Khosla Ventures and Y Combinator. The company has already processed over 20 million rides and rentals for new mobility offerings, including ReachNow, mobility service from the BMW Group, OMNI by Volkswagen, and GIG Carsharing service by AAA. In addition, Ridecell powers dynamic shuttle services for campuses such as Georgia Tech, UC Berkeley, UCSF, 3M, and transit agencies like SouthWest Transit.

Monday, 12 March 2018

Trilogy Tech offers monitoring services

 Trilogy Technologies, a leading managed services provider in Dublin and London, and ScienceLogic, global leaders in hybrid IT monitoring, today announced a partnership to offer customers smart monitoring services that will futureproof them for advancing technologies. When it comes to emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IoT), the number one question is - how can it be monitored?

ScienceLogic’s predictive and proactive analytics single platform for monitoring a diverse range of technologies, will give Trilogy’s customers the opportunity to tap into these emerging technologies to expand their businesses and ultimately increase revenue.

Through real time monitoring, Trilogy will use predictive analysis to ensure services are highly available and minimise impact on customer experience. Similarly, if something has gone wrong, use proactive analysis to quickly identify root cause, prevent repeat occurrences and minimise potential revenue loss for that company.  This approach will ultimately improve productivity and increase savings for all concerned.

Edel Creely, Group Managing Director at Trilogy Technologies commented on the partnership, “ScienceLogic is a perfect fit for us because of its track record for real-time monitoring services that increase productivity and reduce cost. But more than that, this partnership positions us as the go-to Managed Service Provider for innovative companies that are looking to use emerging technologies to offer a unique product or service.”

Traditionally, Managed Service Providers were used for managing and monitoring IT devices but with the growth of AI and IoT, devices can now include vehicles and robots. The ability to monitor real time service levels and maintenance of autonomous devices will be an advantage for any company in or moving to the IoT space.

Dave Link, CEO at ScienceLogic said, “It is great to be working with such an innovative and forward-thinking company like Trilogy, our first Irish partner. The possibilities for opportunities are endless. Uninterrupted service availability and assurance are important to customers when choosing a technology partner to manage their Hybrid IT systems.”
Trilogy’s partnership with ScienceLogic will help forward thinking companies drive innovation through smart technology.