Recap of RE+

Recap of RE+: Could Virtual Power Plants be the Next Big Thing in the Renewable Energy Sector?

This year’s RE+ was a success and to contradict the cliché ‘what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas’, here is a summary of the highlights. 

This year there were a record number of 40,000 attendees and 1,300 exhibitors packed into the Venetian Las Vegas Hotel and Resort. Over the three days it became very evident that OpenADR is on the map in the solar and smart energy market.

Developed by the nation’s leading solar energy organizations, the Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), RE+ reflects an ongoing entrepreneurial approach to renewing best practices across the clean energy landscape as the marketplace evolves.

The OpenADR standard over the years has quickly moved beyond California and traditional demand response in commercial and industrial buildings towards more distributed energy resources, such as battery storage, EV managed charging networks and more recently Virtual Power Plants (VPPs).

The buzz throughout the show was that VPPs are the next big thing in the renewable energy sector.  VPPs can include anything from batteries, smart thermostats, EV chargers, etc. The OpenADR standard allows VPPs to provide real-time value to both the customer and utility. This results in customers seeing a cost reduction because utilities can utilize energy during peak consumption from the VPP, which in return will reduce the risk of power outages.

At the OpenADR Alliance booth we had many people inquiring about how to become involved in the Alliance, as well as a number of attendees asking for more case studies on how members are deploying programs based on the OpenADR standard for renewable energy applications.

This was really encouraging and meant we could point them towards the 15 members exhibiting throughout the show floor, including: AutoGrid, Ampcontrol, Eaton, Electriq, Energport, Franklin WH, Fortress Power, Enersys, Sol-Ark, SWTCH, Schneider, Siemens Energy, Next Era Analytics and NRG Energy.

At the Electriq Power booth they were showcasing their fully certified OpenADR 2.0b solution for use in ADR programs that allow customers to enroll, monitor and dispatch systems at scale.

In addition to our member companies, many exhibiting solar and storage solution providers are now expanding their business into an aggregation role, where they would participate in utility grid services programs, and thus were expressing interest in OpenADR.

We also had a number of inquiries about OpenADR 3.0. This is a newly defined add-on to OpenADR2.0b using modern web service designs. This latest enhancement to the standard is now ready and available for download on our website ( We expect to post additional documentation and how to access the members-only reference implementation on the members-only webpage soon.  Later this fall, we will be announcing the certification program to support this latest addition.

This year’s RE+ was a testament to the importance of utilizing standards like OpenADR. This will ensure interoperability and integration will continue to expand production and energy savings for a cleaner and smarter future.

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