Sony looks to open source cloud microgrid

February 16, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
Sony CSL DC microgrid software
The Hyphae project with Sony CSL and LF Energy aims to develop a cloud-based open source AC microgrid system

Sony's Computer Science Laboratories (CSL) is working with LF Energy on a cloud-based open source microgrid initiative to automate the peer-to-peer distribution of renewable energy.

The Hyphae project aims to make microgrids more resilient by moving Sony CSL’s existing DC grid software that was demonstrated last year to work with AC Grids. This will be combined with resilient, peer-to-peer microgrid energy trading so that even the most remote communities will be able to store and distribute energy autonomously without connecting to large-scale power stations or electrical distribution networks.

“By working with LF Energy, we see a path toward an interoperable, cloud-native, configurable microgrid that will revolutionize the world’s relationship with networking energy,” said Dr Hiroaki Kitano, president and CEO of Sony CSL. “We share the sense of urgency to act on climate issues, which is why we decided to turn a part of our decade-long research into open source, and to work with LF Energy. This is a call to action for the greatest companies in the world to work together to revolutionize the global energy landscape, including residential and industrial energy systems, power systems and the green electrification of transportation.”

“Working with Sony CSL will help us spur energy transformation in developed countries, as well as bring electrification to energy-poor corners of the planet, " said Dr Shuli Goodman, Executive Director of LF Energy which is part of the Linux Foundation. “By launching Hyphae with us, they are making a profound statement about their intention to collaborate and lead to solve the world’s most complicated problem — decarbonization.”

Using Sony CSL’s Autonomous Power Interchange System (APIS) as an open-source, automated microgrid controller with a peer-to-peer trading platform in Hyphae will allow for faster innovation while reducing costs, says Goodman. This will be used to help build the first interoperable AC- and DC-ready microgrid that is self-contained, operational off-grid and able to connect to an electrical distribution


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