Energy Services Interface: Requirements Document

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This energy services interface (ESI) requirements document represents a process step in the path for creating an ESI specification, which will describe the technical characteristics of an ESI. This document outlines the concepts that need to be covered in the ESI specification, such as principal functions of the ESI, grid services communicated through the ESI, and the ESI lifecycle. It provides context for the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Grid Modernization Laboratory Consortium (GMLC) to engage industry participants in the development of the ESI specification. To do this, it describes the desired contents of the ESI specification and provides examples of the type of material that needs to be included in it.

The purpose of the ESI specification is to define the requirements that are to be addressed in information and communications technology (ICT) interface standards for enabling the integration of a facility containing responsive distributed energy resources (DER facility) to an electric system consistent with the fundamental ESI principles. In this context, a DER facility may consist of a single DER with a communicating controller or may be as complex as a microgrid campus with several buildings and many DERs. The ESI specification is not a technical interface standard, but the requirements in the specification can be used to check that existing, augmented, or new interface standards meet the interoperability requirements of the ESI concept, which is explained further in this document. In this way, the ESI specification can be used to guide standards advancement work in multiple standards development organizations.

To explain the scope of the ESI specification, this ESI requirements document provides examples of situations (or illustrative applications) for using an ESI to coordinate DER flexibility for grid operations. These examples originate from foundational work for describing common grid-DER service agreements that are anticipated to be supported using this interface.

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