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Vodafone and Energy Web team up to bring IoT and blockchain to smart grids

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Telecommunications giant Vodafone is teaming up with energy blockchain platform company Energy Web to combine a blockchain with IoT connectivity to secure communication between distributed energy resources.

The energy grid of the future will not only be increasingly renewable, it will also be increasingly distributed, drawing on various energy sources from solar, wind, heat pumps, and even electric cars.

Called distributed energy resources (DERs), these green energy contributors must share data with a management system in order to operate efficiently as energy supply fluctuates.

Vodafone Business, which has more than 100 million IoT connections globally, will partner with Energy Web to use its “Decentralized Operating System” (EW-DOS), to share data safely and securely by creating a secure ID for each data transfer in much the same way as a SIM card does for mobile phones.

It is Energy Web’s first strategic partner in the telecommunications sector, and is one that promises to vastly accelerate its mission to decarbonise the electricity grid.

“We are seeing the convergence of multiple sectors in making the energy transition happen — the energy sector, of course, but also automotive, telecoms, and even finance. From our perspective, the energy sector can only evolve so fast and so far without taking into account IoT connectivity,” said Walter Kok, CEO of Energy Web in a post on Medium.

“Bringing together EW’s expertise in energy and decentralization with Vodafone Business’s leadership in IoT creates a really powerful combination.”

According to Erik Brenneis, Vodafone Business IoT director, the need for a simple way to secure data transfer between distributed energy resources is imperative.

“As the number of decentralised, new-generation, low-carbon devices grows, so does the need for them to be securely connected regardless of their location,” said Brenneis in a statement.

“This connection needs to be simple and secure, ensuring assets are easily able to be connected to, and managed by, energy and communication networks around the globe. At Vodafone Business IoT, we believe that technology and connectivity can be used to help protect the planet and improve people’s lives. We are proud to work together with Energy Web to make this a reality.”

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Bridie Schmidt

Bridie Schmidt specialises in writing about new technology and how it can help solve the problems of carbon emissions and climate change. With a degree in Communications from Macquarie University, and 20 years experience in front end web development, she has freelanced as a web and graphic designer since 2001. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. You can email Bridie at [email protected].

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