The European Union Code of Conduct for interoperability and energy smart appliances was launched at Hannover Messe trade fair on April 23, 2024. Photo Credit: European Commission

Electrolux Group supports new energy-smart initiative in Europe

Electrolux Group is one of ten appliance manufacturers to commit to the new EU Code of Conduct for energy-smart appliances and interoperability. This signals a step forward for energy smart appliances.

The long-awaited European Union Code of Conduct (CoC) for interoperability and energy smart appliances was officially launched at the Hannover Messe trade fair in Germany on April 23, 2024.

This voluntary Code of Conduct is very important given the transformation of the energy landscape in Europe. With a shift towards decentralization and renewable energy sources such as wind and solar (where energy production fluctuates according to the weather), the need for demand-side flexibility has never been stronger. Because of this, households need to adjust their energy consumption. This helps keep the power grid stable and reduces consumer costs. Energy smart appliances (ESA) in homes are one way to do it. These are connected appliances that can be programmed to use electricity when it is cheapest or when renewable energy is most available. For example, you could set your washing machine to turn on when there is a lot of wind power or when solar panels are producing a lot of energy. However, the potential of energy-smart appliances depends on interoperability and stakeholder collaboration.

Boosting seamless interoperability

The new Code of Conduct covers several connected home appliances and use cases. It aims to ensure interoperability and the participation of key stakeholders.

For example, it defines the information that needs to be exchanged to enable standard demand flexibility services at a semantic level that works even when manufacturers use different technical communication protocols. Ultimately, it will guide ESA manufacturers in maximizing demand-side flexibility which will help to improve environmental impact, grid stability and economic optimization across the European energy system.

The first ten early adopters

Nine appliance manufacturers in addition to Electrolux Group – Arçelik, Clivet, Daikin, Miele, Mitsubishi Electric, Panasonic, Vaillant Group, Vestel and Viessmann – have committed to the Code of Conduct and to develop interoperable connected products within a year.The Code of Conduct addresses a variety of appliances with energy labels, spanning white goods such as washing machines, tumble dryers, washer-driers, and dishwashers, as well as heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. It encompasses several essential “use cases” like flexible start, power consumption monitoring, limitation of power consumption, incentive table-based power consumption management, and provision of necessary information for manual operation by users.

Marco Bulgheroni

As Electrolux Group is one of the pioneers behind this initiative, Marco Bulgheroni, Chief Digital Technology Officer, took to the stage at the fair in Hannover. “We consider the Code of Conduct crucial as it supports the adoption of open standards and facilitates a unified market for ESA. Besides reducing energy consumption, ESA also offer enhanced functionality and convenience. Interoperable connected appliances ensure seamless communication and coordination within the energy system, giving consumers more control over their energy usage and costs. This aligns with consumer preferences for smart and efficient solutions,” says Bulgheroni.