Our company focuses on building a decentralized network that enables peer to peer energy transactions between households. Integrating electric Vehicles into this autonomous environment is in our business and project plans for the future, thus we were inspired to try something new in this Hackathon and attempt a project where we will learn a lot about EV cars and the problems they can solve. Thus, our main inspiration to take up this challenge was to learn more about EV cars and how we can integrate their technology into Energo’s business model.
What it does
Given that the price of energy storage is falling, our solution creates a physical of batteries connected via sub-stations, therefore connecting all houses and buildings that have stationary storage with EV cars. Renewable energy can be transferred from one battery to another over this network, which allows storage to ensure that all energy demands, regardless of what time of the day they are at, are met by renewable energy sources. We integrated blockchain technology into our solution to ensure that money settlements as energy transactions happen between batteries are decentralized; the smart-contracts manage the energy creation, storage, and usage within the network and ensure that each person gets paid or pays for exactly the amount of energy they created or used.
How we built it
Our development side included making a website and an android APP that clients can use to see the energy storage facilities in their neighbourhood they can buy and sell energy from. We used android to create the client side of the app for the demo; the Ethereum blockchain to enable a smart contract that quantifies the amount of energy created, stored, and used within the network as well as controls the pricing of the energy every hour using an equation based on the amount of transactions done; finally we used node.js to communicate between the blockchain platform and the client platforms including the android APP.
Challenges we ran into
As blockchain takes a lot of time to implement, we ran into problems developing the entire blockchain platform for our solution as we did not have enough time to complete the smart contracts. Moreover, a business plan focused on South East Asia was to be developed that should be supported by statistics on countries in SEA, but there is very limited information online about the current situation of the EV car market in Thailand and other South East Asian countries, thus a lot of the business model ideas had to be based on assumptions.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are very proud of have a great UI as well as finishing the client side of the app and the website which can already be used to find storage systems in neighbourhoods in Thailand. We are also very proud of the concept of the solution, which can be very helpful to the SouthEast Asia ecosystem if implemented.
What we learned
We learned a lot about the different solutions cheap energy storage can provide, as well as how to use EV cars to decrease the reliability of renewable energy and ensure base load demand is met by renewable sources at all times, even when the sources are not available. As the business model had to be built on several assumptions due to lack of information and statistics of the market on the internet, we learned a lot about the formation of revenue models when operating in the energy and transportation industry, as well as the different competitors out there for EV cars and their solutions.
What's next for EVergo
The EVergo solution can be very helpful to the SouthEast Asia ecosystem if implemented properly. Implementation requirements which we were/are not able to complete in this hackathon due to different reasons include writing the smart-contracts for the blockchain to ensure its functionality and stability in determining the price of energy after each transaction as well as building the hardware that needs to go with such a solution such as the physical infrastructure of the battery network and the smart-meter hardware that must be connected to each house to measure how much solar energy the house is supply and selling back to the grid. Finally, no project can be perfect without spending hours of time de-bugging and finding room for improvement, thus we need to debug, debug, debug.