Efficient power grids have become indispensable when it comes to ensuring the optimal integration of renewable energy sources in the energy system and at the same time assured levels of supply. How will demand develop in the future and in which areas should renewable energies be expanded? The answer is complex and requires good planning and forecasting skills. Establishing a meaningful network model in the European context is therefore essential if we are to successfully accomplish the energy transition. However, there are currently enormous differences in the existing approaches of universities and research institutions to modelling transmission grids from a methodological and data point of view. This diversity could lead to divergent and sometimes contradictory results.

This is where the research project MODEX-NET (model experiment for the comparison and determination of synergy potentials of open source frameworks in the energy system analysis) comes in: to identify and analyse the differences between five transmission grid models. Based on the results obtained from this, proposals for the further development of these models will be formulated. The goal of the joint project, initiated in January 2019, is to improve the transparency of system models and thus to increase the acceptance and reliability of the results. For the first time, existing open-source frameworks will be compared in an open research project. Modelling frameworks are programmes that can be used to simulate and to model energy systems virtually. By analysing the similarities and differences between the individual models, the development potential can be identified. Within the scope of this project, the partners will also be working on expanding this potential. Special attention will be paid to changes in supply and demand. The results will subsequently be available to the public and could, for instance, be used by electricity grid and transmission grid operators.

The partners of the collaborative project are receiving funding from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) in order to perform the energy system analysis. The project will run from 2019 to 2021. The research consortium is made up of leading technical universities and research centres (see links below).