MENTOR: cliMate drivEN land suitability Tool fOr Renewable energy installations.
MENTOR is an innovative solution born from the Ideate phase, aiming to address the complex challenge of balancing agriculture and renewable energy expansion through intelligent land allocation. By leveraging a powerful synthesis of available data, machine learning, and decision support tools, MENTOR is delivering a comprehensive approach that considers environmental, social, and economic factors.
Company/Organisation: Neuralio A.I.
Neuralio AI, headquartered in Thessaloniki, Greece, stands at the forefront of AI technology since its inception in 2022. We specialize in crafting comprehensive AI systems and services that are poised to revolutionize the realms of Weather/Climate, Renewable Energy, and Fintech. At Neuralio AI, we harness the transformative might of AI to reshape industries, streamline operations, and pave the way for a sustainable future. Our team of adept professionals is dedicated to infusing cutting-edge AI technologies into every facet of business, providing data-driven insights that supercharge decision-making and optimize operations. We envision driving global progress through AI and We are committed to delivering scalable and sustainable AI solutions, empowering our clients to thrive in an ever-evolving market while contributing to a greener, more prosperous future.
MENTOR Application Sectors
MENTOR is tackling crucial issues that numerous stakeholders encounter in their daily operations. For Solar Energy Proponents, we understand the pressing need for Efficient Land Allocation. MENTOR is your solution, helping you identify prime locations for solar installations while ensuring minimal disruption to agriculture. We take pride in Environmental Impact Mitigation, suggesting sites that minimize harm to nature and regulatory compliance by simplifying permitting processes. For Farmers, your agricultural legacy is precious. MENTOR is your steadfast ally, committed to Agricultural Preservation. We safeguard your livelihood by preserving arable land and promoting responsible land use within communities. With us, Food Security isn't just a concept; it's a reality. Our emphasis on suitable land selection ensures sustainable local food production. For Investors and Policy Makers, the power to drive change lies with you. MENTOR empowers Effective Decision-Making, guiding you to financially and socially viable sites for solar energy installations. We are your partner in the Sustainable Energy Transition, optimizing land use and minimizing conflicts to pave the way for a greener, brighter future.
MENTOR isn't just a solution; it's a revolution. Join us in reshaping the landscape of renewable energy, agriculture, and land use. Together, we'll build a sustainable tomorrow, one smart land allocation at a time.
MENTOR addressing challenge
There is a growing dilemma between agriculture and the exploitation of sustainable resources such as solar panels. This is because available land is scarce and there is a need for both activities to be able to occupy space for it. Solar panels need space, creating what has been dubbed “energy sprawl”. Even as a percentage of the EU energy portfolio, solar power has already led to land-use conflicts, with proponents of solar starting to spar with farmers over land.
The “threat” posed to agriculture by the expansion of solar power has risen even further under the recent energy crisis, where the dilemma of where to put new PV’s is often a hot and contradictory topic for both investors, companies, policy and the society at large. At the same time the deployment of new PV’s is hindered by the current grid capacity and the simultaneous increase in demand for new energy connections, new energy consumers (e.g EV’s) and energy prosumers. With an increasing grip capacity and density, the improvement, maintenance and ensuring a high quality of service becomes more and more difficult, financially, technically and economically. All in all investing in strengthening and expanding the grid infrastructure requires long-term strategy and significant investments, investments that should fulfill important technical requirements such as ensuring the reliability, efficiency, quality, and uninterrupted supply of power. These goals are considered in each step of the investment process while at the same time trying to achieve the best cost-effective solution through a greater optimization of electrical grid planning and minimization of total costs of serving the demand. Though current strategic planning is hindered by the urgent need to build out grid infrastructure for supporting the green energy transition, Grid managers need to make decisions on where to invest in order to make meaningful and financially correct investment decisions.
To address this issue, NEURALIO A.I. answers the call of the B4NRG consortium with a cross-cutting solution that resonates with two pillars of the BD4NG ecosystem: 1. Management and Distributed Energy Resources; and 2. Operations of Electricity Networks. The proposed solution by our team of expert’s answers to the name MENTOR: cliMate drivEN land suitability Tool fOr Renewable energy installations. It comes to build upon the data management and pipelines provided for big data by BD4NRG and with its three innovative data driven modules it provides classes of land suitability for PV plant installations. MENTOR Decision Support tool leverages on top of open data and utilizes sophisticated machine learning models to provide current suitable locations. MENTOR DSS truly innovates by fully exploiting its Agent Based Modelling (ABM) framework, delivering optimizations both in hard (economical/financial, demand, etc) and soft terms (social inclusion, people well-being, etc). This framework acts as a smart assistance that provides climate and socioeconomic driven future scenarios for land suitability and potential productivity. The MENTOR DSS tool, enhanced by the provided BD4NRG tools for big data, can achieve high levels of accuracy and unparalleled scalability, enabling us to offer MENTOR DSS services to a global market. Moreover, its “modularity by design” allows the MENTOR DSS to be easily tailored to new requests coming from any potential customer/end-users, and by building on top of the ABM modelling power and the underlying BD4NRG ecosystem, showcase its potential and diverse applications to a variety of sectoral needs.
MENTOR proposed solution
MENTOR aims to bring a land-suitability framework based on open-source software and data, while adopting frameworks by the BD4NRG ecosystem. MENTOR is composed of three modules, each designed with its own data pipelines in a modular way having a distinct Docker file and image while maintaining interoperability amongst the modules. The three modules are
- The Climate Driver Module: Handles the climate data that will be fed to the PV installation module.
- The PV installation Suitability Module: Makes a classification based on Neural Networks for the suitability of the chosen AOI.
- Smart Decision Assistance: An Agent based modelling framework that considers socio-economic data and time-series of climate projection data for the chosen AOI providing suitability scenarios based on climate projections and their interplay with socioeconomic factors from FAOSTAT.
As can be seen in Figure 1, MENTOR uses the climatic driver to feed the PV installation module and the Smart Decision Assistant, whilst there is an interaction between the PV installation Module that provides information back to and from the Smart decision Assistant. All the modules operate to give the current statues but also the future climate driven Scenarios. In the next Sections all the distinct modules are analyzed and their integration to the BD4NRG ecosystem is described.