Schneider Electric Builds the Smart Grid for the Solar Village in France

Solar Village in France

Solar Village – ( Solar Thermal Magazine ) -Rueil-Malmaison (France), June, 2014 – Schneider Electric, the global specialist in energy management, has announced that it is a “Diamond” partner for the 2014 edition of Solar Decathlon Europe, taking place from June 28 to July 14 on the grounds of the Palace of Versailles, France.Launched in 2002 by the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) and supported by Schneider Electric since 2007, the Solar Decathlon is an international competition that aims to challenge students from universities across the globe as part of a 2-year project to design, build, and operate energy efficient solar-powered houses.

The final takes place over a 10-day period in a solar village open to the public, when the various competing projects will be assessed in 10 consecutive contests. The winner of the competition will be the team that has designed and built the house with the best score across the 6 main challenges – density, mobility, efficiency, innovation, affordability, and contextualization.

To consume less and consume more efficiently, and to improve the energy efficiency of buildings and reduce their environmental impact are the key challenges currently facing Schneider Electric, in parallel with the need to transfer knowledge and expertise through education and training. So it’s a natural fit for Schneider Electric to be involved in this human and technological adventure,” says Guy Dufraisse, President of Schneider Electric France.

As a “Diamond” partner in this 2014 European event, which is expecting some 200,000 visitors, Schneider Electric is supporting the competition organizers by installing the smart grid that will connect the entire solar village. All data (such as the electricity consumption for each house, etc.) will be available in real time on a dedicated app available for smartphones and tablets for the duration of the competition. Schneider Electric will also be presenting their most innovative home energy management solutions in the Smart Home Center by Schneider Electric. A hundred or so Schneider Electric volunteers will be on hand throughout the event to welcome visitors and lead guided tours around the solar village.

In addition to this global event partnership, Schneider Electric is also assisting several of the competing teams, providing technical support and expertise as in previous years. Schneider Electric was the leading private-sector partner of Canopea, the winning French team of Solar Decathlon Europe 2012 held in Madrid, Spain. This year the Group has elected to support 13 of the 20 competing housing projects by providing an array of innovative solutions – some of which are still being developed – designed to optimize and manage energy consumption, improve comfort, generate power through solar photovoltaics, charge an electric vehicle, etc.

Schneider Electric is supporting both of the French entrants in the competition:

  • Team Paris and its self-sufficient collective housing project – the Liv-Lib. The team unites students from several of Paris’s leading educational establishments specializing in architecture, electrical and electrotechnical engineering, building, industry, and applied geo-science;
  • Team Atlantic Challenge and its Phileas project, which unites students from universities in the Pays de la Loire region of France specializing in architecture and urban design, wood science and technology, health and bio products, renewable energies, graphic design, and communication strategies.

As one of the leading stakeholders in the solar village, Schneider Electric, through its Foundation, will present a world exclusive at Solar Decathlon Europe 2014 – a new concept in sustainable social housing blending comfort and energy efficiency with affordability that costs 40 percent less than a conventional building. The aim of the Group and the Schneider Electric Foundation is to demonstrate over the course of the 10 days that it is possible to provide comfortable, modular, transportable, inexpensive, sustainable housing for those who need it most. At the end of the event the building will be relocated to Lyon, France, where it will house families who are currently being supported by one of Schneider Electric’s Foundation partner organizations, an affordable housing association “Habitat et Humanisme”.

Photo credit is Schneider electric decathalon 2011

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