When energy breathes. The ‘digital survival kit’ for energy providers, grid operators and energy producers.
aliunid is a white-label product for energy providers, grid operators and energy producers. End customers (households, property managers and SMEs) experience aliunid as a smart home or smart business solution.
aliunid analyses and manages energy flows from the bottom up, from households to feeder pillars and from transformers to power plants. As a digital energy provider, aliunid has no physical infrastructure of its own (grids, transformers, power plants) and creates its value via real-time data, connectivity and its own Swiss Internet of Things platform. Unlike standard cloud providers, aliunid’s SIoT (Swiss Internet of Things) platform is not subject to data monitoring by foreign governments (see, for example, the US CLOUD Act from 2018).
An energy supply that breathes: In the world of renewable energy, there is too much electricity when it’s sunny and too little when it’s not. To ensure neither scenario leads to a blackout, the elements in the energy supply system need to become much more flexible. This is where aliunid’s new approach to energy provision comes in and creates an energy supply that breathes. If an excess of energy is being produced, the system ‘breathes in’; electricity consumption is temporarily increased and energy is stored with the end customer. If not enough energy is being produced, electricity consumption is reduced until local energy production or household storage batteries start feeding energy back into the grid – ‘breathing out’. This makes stepping back from nuclear energy and a fast reduction in CO2 emissions safe and affordable.
From annual values to real-time data: In the standard, non-renewable energy world, the central power station controls the energy supply system from the top down. Detailed information about demand-side energy flows was previously neither necessary nor possible from an IT perspective. aliunid’s ‘breathing’ energy supply is controlled from the bottom up. This requires real-time information about the state of the supply system (output, electricity, voltage, reactive energy, frequency) from individual households to feeder pillars, from transformers to power plants. aliunid has patented a method for reducing the complexity of energy grid management and the necessary data volumes to a minimum. aliunid’s energy providers, distribution grid operators and energy producers can view their systems in real time, updating every 1–5 seconds. This means rethinking traditional smart meter concepts.
From centralised to decentralised: aliunid’s integrated energy supply system is organised from the bottom up. Energy is only exchanged with the next level up when the unit below has too much or too little energy. The energy flows are intelligently managed in real time from the decentralised end customer via the energy provider through to the central hydropower plant.
From carbonised to decarbonised: Real-time information on the energy usage of each end customer means that their individual carbon footprint (grams of CO2 per kilowatt hour) can be seen. However, aliunid doesn’t just show each household their individual footprint; instead, the CO2 impact of the energy supply for the upcoming hours is predicted and the end customer’s usage is managed to minimise their household’s effective carbon footprint. aliunid is looking for regulatory means by which private and industry customers can be compensated financially for this effective CO2 reduction.
Swiss technology and data protection: aliunid services are based on an internally developed, 100% Swiss Internet of Things (SIoT) platform. The decentralised data structure stores the data locally with the customer and avoids using centralised supercomputers. As a result, the system-critical infrastructure can achieve a whole new level of data protection and cyber security.
When energy breathes. Around 20 Swiss energy companies from across the value chain are combining their expertise to create the energy supply system of the future.
The innovative, efficient business ecosystem is currently made up of 15 energy providers, three major hydropower producers and a Swiss IoT developer. The aliunid community contains a sufficient number of practical experts, provides the required systems and addresses the necessary end customer topics to continue developing the ‘breathing’ energy supply in a Swiss-wide field test to assess its market viability.
Due to its key role in the implementation of the Energy Strategy 2050, aliunid receives significant support from the Swiss Confederation and the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE). This support not only concerns technical areas (such as identification and flexibility management) but also regulatory issues (new energy supply = new regulations) and data protection and cyber security topics (digital infrastructure). Within this framework, aliunid is already collaborating with the best universities and universities of applied sciences in Switzerland, namely Bern University of Applied Sciences (BFH), Empa, ETH Zurich and HES-SO Valais-Wallis. Other Swiss universities are currently being invited to collaborate on implementation in the specific areas of algorithmics and artificial intelligence.
We are looking for more innovative energy companies – in particular, those based in central and eastern Switzerland. The size of the company is not the primary concern. The most important thing is innovative capacity and an openness to new approaches. Are you interested in becoming part of our pioneering initiative? Would you as an energy provider like to take part in our field test? email@example.com
Are you interested in becoming part of our pioneering initiative? Would you as an energy provider like to take part in our field test? firstname.lastname@example.org
When energy breathes. During the Swiss-wide field test from 2019 to 2020, around 20 innovative energy companies will develop the energy supply system of the future.
The aim and advantages of our test: The actual challenges and needs of end customers can only be identified in the course of a real, practical field test. aliunid will build on this experience when developing the products and services for the energy supply system of the future.
Energy needs to be environmentally friendly, safe and affordable for everyone. aliunid’s goal is to transition Switzerland’s current energy supply system to renewable energy as quickly as possible. We need to gradually move away from nuclear energy and fossil fuels and increase energy efficiency fast. The centralised, highly flexible hydropower plants in the Swiss Alps need to be integrated into the new system of decentralised energy production (photovoltaics) to leverage the benefits of both worlds.
Alongside the necessary specialist knowledge within the aliunid community, another important factor in developing an energy supply that breathes is the freedom of an independent start-up, which allows the ‘energy supply of tomorrow’ to be developed entirely from scratch. In this regard, understanding of the old system is as important as the ability to rethink energy afresh.
The field test began in April 2019 and is scheduled to continue until the end of 2020. aliunid intends to roll out its solutions for end customers (aliunid HOME) and grid operators (aliunid GRID) on the Swiss market at the start of 2021. Field tests with real end customers are currently under way in German-, French- and Italian-speaking Switzerland. The Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) is also taking part in the field test as a technology partner. SBB is interested in effective decarbonisation solutions for the industrial sector.
When energy breathes. Dr David Thiel and Prof. Andreas Danuser founded aliunid as a start-up in 2018. They are applying their many years of experience to designing the energy supply of tomorrow.
Numerous energy providers, hydropower producers and IoT developers are already involved in aliunid AG. The financial and substantive dedication of the aliunid community has enabled an agile, entrepreneurial approach to be taken with targeted, sustainable results. Both the founders, Dr David Thiel and Prof. Andreas Danuser, have complementary scientific, practical and entrepreneurial experience. They receive support from a rapidly growing team of selected experts from both the ‘old’ and ‘new’ worlds of energy.
Dr. David Thiel studied economics at the University of Basel and gained a PhD in energy management (integrated resource planning) in 1995. During his 10 years as CEO of Industrielle Werke Basel (IWB), he turned a dependent, cantonal administrative department into a proactive, internationally successful energy company. Before that, he headed the energy and telecommunications business of the privately run WWZ Group in Zug as sales director. David also worked at BKW Energie AG (business development), AEW Energie AG (energy management) and PWC Lugano/Zurich (strategy consulting). David is an experienced CEO with a comprehensive track record in the fields of energy, telecommunications and water supply. He has been driving the digitalisation of energy supply through a number of entrepreneurial initiatives since 2013. He initiated Smart Regio Basel in 2015 and was named as a Top Digital Shaper in Switzerland (level C) in 2017. Together with Prof. Andreas Danuser, he founded the digital energy provider aliunid in 2018.
Prof. Dr. Andreas Danuser studied electrical engineering at ETH Zurich, followed by a PhD in the field of networked IT systems. Andreas worked at ABB developing technology for distributed real-time computer systems for control technology. He headed the Strategic Technology Unit at Ascom for six years and has been a successful entrepreneur in the fields of telecommunications (VOIP), IT and IoT since 1998. During this time, Andreas has founded, developed and, in some cases, sold around a dozen start-ups. He became a professor of Internet of Things (IoT) at the Bern University of Applied Sciences in 2014. Milestones of his entrepreneurial career include taking over the operation of the landline network of Sunrise in Switzerland and various countries in Asia and equipping multiple railway and bus operators around the world with mobile router systems. SIOTv2 has been available since spring 2019. It was specially developed as a decentralised swarm cloud to meet the requirements of distributed systems, such as those needed for a decentralised energy supply system.
The team: The two founders are supported by a highly qualified team of experts in the fields of IoT, energy management and marketing. Around 27 people currently work in the Aarau office, the aliunid lab at BFH in Biel and an IoT development centre in Niš in Serbia.
When energy breathes. Stay up to date.
Our energy system is changing: decentralized energy production, digital processes and applications, and the switch from fossil to renewable energy sources are bringing a lot of dynamism to the industry. One indicator of this is an extremely lively Swiss energy start-up scene. aliunid is part of this very important movement for a better energy future.
Orient yourself around the Swiss energy startup landscape with the Startup Map.
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When energy breathes. We are present across Switzerland, with offices in a central location.
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5001 Aarau, Switzerland