Eaton and The Florian Hotel: Innovative ‘Buildings as a Grid’ solution

The Florian Hotel in Amsterdam partnered with Eaton to secure a resilient, cost-effective and renewable electricity supply. Employing Eaton's Buildings as a Grid strategy, it successfully converted a former office building near Schiphol Airport into a thriving hotel powered by renewable energy, overcoming grid limitations.

Eaton and The Florian Hotel: Innovative ‘Buildings as a Grid’ solution

At a Glance
Who: The Florian Hotel in Amsterdam, in collaboration with Eaton
What: Implementing Eaton’s Buildings as a Grid approach to overcome grid connection limitations
Where: The Florian Hotel, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Why: To ensure a reliable supply of low-cost, low-carbon electricity for the hotel
When: Ongoing implementation

The Challenge

The challenge is twofold: First, business owners in Europe are increasingly transitioning to electricity to reduce carbon emissions, but their efforts are hindered by inadequate grid connections. Second, grid accessibility constraints in many European countries, except Finland, pose a significant barrier to electrification.

The Solution

The Florian Hotel owner partnered with Eaton to implement the Buildings as a Grid approach. By combining a 30 kilowatts peak (kWp) rooftop solar photo-voltaic array and an Eaton xStorage battery energy storage system, the hotel overcame its inadequate grid connection.

How the Project Works

Peak shaving technology ensures efficient energy usage, saving costs while staying within grid connection limits. The approach is scalable, with integrated electric vehicles (EV) chargers and energy management software optimising energy consumption and reducing the hotel’s carbon footprint.

Eaton’s solution blends solar power with grid electricity, prioritising battery power during peak demand. Integrated EV chargers are powered as needed while maintaining battery charge. The Buildings Energy Management Software (BEMS) analyses current and past energy trends at the hotel and weather forecasts to maximise solar energy use, reducing costs and carbon emissions.

Eaton’s software directs available power to where it is most needed for EV charging and other electrical requirements in the hotel, while at the same time keeping the storage system charged to substitute power from the grid when necessary.

Overall, the “Buildings as a Grid” system aims to transform a building or site into an energy hub, while also creating a gateway to further electrification by unlocking more investment opportunities into green energy solutions.

Eaton’s offering is designed to integrate EV charging infrastructure into a site in a way that improves flexibility, helps balance the load across a local network and avoid expensive peak energy prices.

The Results

As this is a new installation, the results are not yet available. However, in 2022, the Florian Hotel reduced carbon emissions by more than 15 tons compared to similar-sized buildings, while staying within grid connection limits, even during soaring energy prices.

Business Benefits

The Florian Hotel’s Building as a Grid approach enables control of energy costs, substantial carbon savings, and supports sustainability goals.

Industry Context

Business owners across Europe are increasingly turning to electricity to meet carbon reduction targets, yet they often face an unexpected setback when it comes to enlarging the capacity of their building’s connection with the grid. The demands of electrification, combined with ageing power networks, mean that many distribution system operators are unable to provide their customers with larger grid connections, particularly for commercial, industrial, and residential apartment buildings.

The REA’s Energy Transition Readiness Index indicates these challenges in several countries, including Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, and the UK.

The Buildings as a Grid approach is an innovative solution to overcome grid connection limitations and promote sustainable energy usage.

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