Both data and energy are key ingredients in all sectors, because everything that is produced and consumed in society has a direct link to energy.

Radical changes will take place in the energy sector, with Big Data playing a key role. Indirectly, this will affect traffic, food production and waste processing, among others. This theme aims to enable and accelerate the energy transition.

For decades, little has changed in the way energy is generated and distributed in the Netherlands. Energy is generated in a number of large power stations and then distributed to customers via the electricity and gas networks. These power plants adjust themselves so that supply and demand are precisely balanced.

New challenges

However, with the emergence of sustainable energy, we are on the threshold of fundamental changes in the energy sector. Firstly, energy will increasingly be generated locally by solar panels, wind turbines, heat pumps, biofermentation, etc. Secondly, matching supply and demand will become a new challenge.

After all, much more coordination is required to get the energy from all those individual solar panels to the right place. In addition, sustainable sources are much more unpredictable: sometimes there is a lot of sun and wind, sometimes little. So storage is needed to use the surplus when there is no wind or sun. Thirdly, the separate networks of gas, electricity and heat/cold will have to be better connected. For example, surplus electricity can be stored as synthetic gas or heat/cold.

Role of ICT

ICT plays a major role in this transition because it can meet the need for coordination. Network operators are rolling out more and more smart meters and sensors to provide this coordination. This results in large flows of data that need to be integrated and analysed using smart algorithms.

This theme is drawn by Pieter den Hamer (Lead Big Data at Alliander, also Associate researcher at Utrecht University) and Han La Poutri (MT member of Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica and full professor Intelligent Energy Systems at TU Delft).


The objective of this theme is to use public-private cooperation to bring about a change in the use of data in the energy domain. To this end key players from industry, science and government will be linked and special calls will be developed that focus on specific sub-problems.

Role NWO and TNO

NWO executes the calls and is involved in supporting the C2D organisation. TNO provides expertise and facilities such as the Hybrid Energy System Integration (HESI) Lab in Groningen at the Energy Transition Centre (EnTranCe).


Related projects

Bekijk hieronder de Projecten gerelateerd aan het thema Energy

Related calls

Bekijk hieronder de Calls gerelateerd aan het thema Energy

Related news

Multidimensional Big Data Modeling for Reliable Electricity Supply
Weather patterns cause significant fluctuations in weather in Europe and in the potential supply of energy from renewable sources. Weather conditions can jeopardize the long-term system adequacy of a low-carbon energy system. A robust and reliable en...
02 July 2024
Verslag: Workshop ‘Data-driven Innovations for the Energy Transitions’
On Thursday, September 21st, the Commit2Data community focused on energy came together with the NL AIC working group on Energy & Sustainability at Mondai House of AI. With the Commit2Data program approaching its end, goal of this workshop was to ...
27 October 2023