A planning tool for the energy transition of islands

28 June 2021

— Within the INSULAE project, Artelys develops a tool for the strategic planning of the energy transition of European Union islands.

Overview of the INSULAE project

is a European collaborative research project (Horizon 2020) aiming at fostering the deployment of innovative solutions for the decarbonization of EU islands.

Artelys is in charge of developing an investment planning tool, based on the Artelys Crystal technology. The tool will enable energy planners, energy system experts and other stakeholders to build, compare and evaluate different scenarios and create cost-effective action plans for their islands.

In order to facilitate the design of future-proof action plans, the planning tool will be able to optimize investments in energy production technologies and flexibility solutions. A rich library of key performance indicators, including energy independence, energy costs, and decarbonization level, will allow for a quick and robust assessment of the generated scenarios.

Role of Lighthouse Islands

The tool is developed with the help of partners from the three “Lighthouse Islands”: Unije, Madeira and Bornholm. This collaboration ensures that the tool will meet the needs of its future users. In 2020, the first steps have consisted in:

  • Developing a first version of the tool: an intuitive web interface allowing users to explore the model, to run simulations and to analyze results. Simulations cover both multi-energy supply-demand equilibrium and power network simulations
  • Collecting and processing the data required to model the actual energy systems, including their energy consumption, production technologies and networks

Different indicators allow for the visualization and assessment of the energy system via a map view, as shown below where the total annual energy demand (in GWh) on the island of Bornholm is shown:

Insulae Artelys Planning Tool

2021 workplan

A multi-energy pathway building module is being developed and integrated into the planning tool. The users can apply over a set of target years of the planning horizon a number of actions from a library that ease the design of pathways. Theses actions include: 

  • Modifications of the system: imported energy price variations, consumer base increase, enforcement of new environmental regulations, etc
  • Potential investments: new available technology, the commitment of a new generation or grid asset, decommissioning, etc

Deployment of the planning tool

The planning tool will be delivered to the “Lighthouse Islands”, allowing the creation of their action plans, and provide a feedback related to the general usability of the solution, the user interfaces, the set of indicators included in the solution, etc.

The feedback from “Lighthouse Islands” will allow to improve the tool, that will then be used for the “Follower Islands” located in Spain, Germany, Greece and the French West Indies.

Finally, the project will reach out to additional islands that are interested in the developed solution, and will facilitate dissemination activities between all the involved islands.


  • Project budget: 12 million € of which 10 million supported by the H2020 programme
  • Duration: 4 years (April 2019 – March 2023)
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 824433 Disclaimer excluding Agency responsibility Any dissemination of results must indicate that it reflects only the author's view and that the Agency is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No 82443.

The content of this communication reflects only the author’s view, the financing agency is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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