Blockchain non-profit organization Energy Web and global communications company Vodafone Business have announced a partnership to give energy assets secure digital identifiers and track their use and connections within energy networks. They will combine SIM-centric blockchain technology (SCB) with Internet of Things (IoT) technology.
Vodafone’s focus on IoT as Vodafone Business IoT now has more than 100 million connections, its global connectivity and SIM-like technology for mobile phones will be used with the decentralized operating system Energy Web ( EW-DOS).
Energy Web launched its open source enterprise blockchain platform for the energy sector in 2019, Energy Web Chain. This project has grown to encompass EW-DOS which is, according to Energy Web, a suite of decentralized “blockchain plus” solutions.
Energy Web has also developed an energy blockchain ecosystem that includes utility companies, grid operators, and energy buyers and developers. The organization’s goal is to accelerate “a low-carbon, customer-centric power system by unleashing the potential of blockchain and other decentralized technologies.”
Vodafone Business is Energy Web’s first telecom partner. The project aims to improve the integration of energy assets, such as turbines and solar panels, using IoT connectivity and blockchain, in particular SCB technology. This new SIM-centric technology will provide secure digital identifiers to energy assets, meaning energy grid stakeholders will be able to identify, track, validate and manage energy equipment and assets within smart grids. According to the Energy Web announcement:
“The ability to identify and validate distributed generation assets in the smart grid is essential to maintain its stability. “
Vodafone already provides smart metering and smart grid solutions to the energy sector. Erik Brenneis, Director of Vodafone Business IoT, says:
“As the number of decentralized, next-generation, low-carbon devices increases, so does the need for them to be securely connected, regardless of their location. “
Walter Kok, CEO of Energy Web, adds “from our point of view, the energy industry can only evolve so quickly and so far without considering IoT connectivity.”
Kok, commenting on the ease of use of SIM technology to identify and connect devices, said CoinDesk:
“We can connect through [the SIM], we don’t have to do anything, just download the software from Voda, and it is connected to the channel and has its own identity; because that’s the beauty of it.
The benefits of blockchain in securing and improving supply chains and processes are being used again in the energy sector, one of the primary use cases for distributed ledger technology. Blockchain’s secure traceability and authorized real-time accessibility offer untapped potential to a developing and increasingly digital energy industry. The blockchain is also being tested in the energy sector to provide P2P energy exchange platforms, to track renewable energy production and to encourage the consumption of renewable energy.