Digitalization is Opening up New Opportunities

EM-Power Europe Exhibition Newspaper Issue 01 2020

Last year, Germany lost a record amount of almost 6.5 billion kWh of electricity that could have been generated from renewable sources of energy by plants whose activities had to be capped to avoid overloading the power grid. The total cost for the grid and system safety precautions amounted to 1.2 billion euros.

The share of volatile electricity continues to grow due to the new deployment of photovoltaic installations and wind power sites. How renewable energies can be better integrated into our distribution grids is therefore one of the most important questions of the energy transition. Many solutions are based on intelligently connecting the energy infrastructure. Smart grids enable communication between decentralized energy sources, storage systems and prosumers. By balancing out the supply and demand, they help to utilize power grids to their full capacity.

Digitalization of the energy supply is therefore a major growth market. According to figures from the International Energy Agency, the global investments in smart meters alone – the centerpiece of a smart grid – have almost doubled, increasing from 11 billion US dollars in 2014 to 21 billion US dollars last year. Alongside the urgent need to make a success of the energy transition, digitalization also brings new prospects and areas of business for the energy industry. In the Stadtwerkestudie 2020, a study of municipal utilities, over 79% of the surveyed municipal utilities named digitalization as the main factor driving the maximization of their potential for efficiency and growth.

According to the study published by the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) together with Ernst & Young, the utility companies ranked smart metering (81%) and cybersecurity (75%) as particularly relevant digital technologies. As the international exhibition for energy management and integrated energy solutions, EM-Power Europe plays an important role in this dynamic market and now boasts an expanded portfolio. Smart grids and the integration of renewable energies, grid infrastructure and system services are now also part of the picture. Decentralized and renewable energy supply, smart building automation, energy management systems within microgrids, districts and buildings as well as commercial and industrial energy services remain an important part of the exhibition. As part of The smarter E, EM-Power Europe has established itself as the interface between a sustainable energy supply and the efficient distribution and use of electricity and heat.

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Further Content


Dr. Rodrigo Lopes Sauaia (ABSOLAR - Associação Brasileira de Energia Solar Fotovoltaica)



Co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO) at the Brazilian Photovoltaic Solar Energy Association (ABSOLAR – Associação Brasileira de Energia Solar Fotovoltaica), the national association representing companies and professionals from all segments of the solar PV value chain with operations in Brazil. Co-founder and member of the board of directors at the Global Solar Council (GSC), the global entity unifying and representing the solar power sector at the international level. <br /> <br />Leading ABSOLAR′s team since its inception and foundation, Rodrigo Sauaia serves as the main representative and champion of the solar PV sector in Brazil, directly interfacing with high-level decision makers, government officials, politicians, legislators, regulators, financial institutions, the media, NGOs, companies, and the civil society. He is an active national and international event speaker, media spokesperson, and strategic advisor to ABSOLAR′s associate members, dedicating himself to promote the development of the solar PV sector and market in Brazil. <br /> <br />His academic background includes a Ph.D. with honours in Engineering and Materials Technology from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), with an international collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institut für Solare Energiesysteme (Fraunhofer ISE, Germany), a M.Sc. with honours in Renewable Energy with PV Specialisation from the EUREC Master Program, with an international collaboration with the ETH Zürich (Switzerland), and a B.Sc. with honours in Chemistry from the University of São Paulo (Brazil). <br /> <br />In 2015, he was elected by Recharge News Thought Leaders Club as one of the most influential professionals in the global scenario of renewable energy and key promoter of solar power in Brazil. Also in 2015, the Legislative Assembly of the State of Minas Gerais bestowed him with the Medal of the Order of Legislative Merit, in recognition of his valued contribution to the promotion and development of photovoltaic solar energy in the State of Minas Gerais and in Brazil. In 2017, the Government of the State of Goiás officially commended him with the Grand Officer Medal of the Order of Anhanguera Merit, in recognition of his valued contribution to the development of photovoltaic solar energy in the State of Goiás. Also in 2017, the Legislative Assembly of the State of Goiás bestowed him with the honorary citizenship of the State of Goiás, in recognition of his valued contribution to the development and establishment of the Solar Program of the State of Goiás, as well as for his outstanding contribution to the State “Permanent Forum on Subjects Related to the Energy Sector”.


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Stefan Wippich (SecondSol GmbH)






Learn more about Solar Promotion GmbH and FWTM GmbH & Co. KG, the organizers of The smarter E Europe.


Download the Study "Energy Transition in the Context of Nuclear and Coal Phase-Out"

To avoid a shortfall in electricity generation, photovoltaics and storage must be greatly expanded in Germany.