The goal of establishing the Słupsk Bioenergy Cluster, initiated by Wodociągi Słupsk, was to create and develop a local energy market. The solution aims to enable optimum use of local RES energy and energy balancing of all utilities: electricity, heat, and gas. This is possible thanks to the development of infrastructure and the implementation of a modern IT system, which centrally collects and monitors data from various sources in order to manage energy securely, offering green solutions for the local market's needs.
The main recipient of the cluster solution is the local community, and the participants of the project include producers of electricity and heat from renewable sources (RES), conventional sources, as well as energy consumers, including the Trzy Fale Water Park in Słupsk, and also the Apator Group as a provider of innovative IT solutions.
The developed concept of the Słupsk Bioenergy Cluster envisions the production of electricity and heat through renewable sources: biogas plants, wind farms, and photovoltaic power stations. The combustion of biogas, generated from sewage sludge, is made possible by installed cogeneration units. Throughout the process, the majority of ecologically generated electricity is directed to the electrical grid or sold, while the heat is utilised for local heating purposes, including heating water in facilities such as the local water park. According to the cluster principles, local entities based on this framework are engaged in the generation, consumption, storage, and sale of electricity, heat, and fuels.
The key aspect of the entire process is the acquisition of measurement data for all utilities, allowing for informed and rational management of processes related to energy production, storage, utilisation, and distribution.
The system prepared by the Apator Group, currently being implemented in the Słupsk Cluster, will provide full control over the following processes:
- Network supervision – continuous monitoring of the operational status of devices, the operation of the heat and electrical distribution network, and connection points to the network;
- Telemechanical data acquisition – tracking the current status of devices supervising the heat and electrical distribution network, presenting network state parameters along with graphical representation of parameters;
- Measurement data acquisition – obtaining all measurement data necessary for balancing, reporting, alarming, settlement, or estimation of heat or electrical energy production quantities, as well as distribution/delivery/supply;
- Operation – managing failures, planning crew work on the heat and electrical distribution network, reporting emergency and planned events, preparing workspace, monitoring of work time and the scope of completed work;
- Management – reporting and analysing events affecting the proper functioning of the network. Reporting is conducted in real-time and on-demand, providing a comprehensive view of the functioning of business processes in the production and distribution of electrical energy and heat.
The solution, created in cooperation between Wodociągi Słupsk and the Apator Group, is the first software of its kind designed for the local market. It reflects the trend of energy transformation, moving away from traditional, large-scale power generation towards creating a product that will be useful for local actions, enabling the use of one's own ecological resources for energy production and consumption.
The Słupsk Cluster is a project that is primarily intended to provide a lower cost of energy for the end user, improve energy security, improve the situation of the local heating industry, as well as create better conditions for the development of the economy, reduce the carbon footprint of the local economy and local governments, but above all to achieve energy self-sufficiency, which in an era of rising energy prices is becoming a key challenge.