Security and privacy in p2p electricity trading

Primary supervisor

Additional information

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Funding

  • Directly Funded Project (European/UK Students Only)
This research project has funding attached. Funding for this project is available to citizens of a number of European countries (including the UK). In most cases this will include all EU nationals. However full funding may not be available to all applicants and you should read the full department and project details for further information.

Project description

In the last decade, the energy sector has been undertaking a significant shift in the way electricity is generated, traded and consumed. With the introduction of smart meters - devices that can measure and communicate users' electricity consumption every several minutes - more and more innovative services become available to users.

One of these services is the peer-to-peer (p2p) electricity trading that allows users to trade electricity among themselves (via trading platforms), rather than buying from (or selling to) their suppliers. For example, a user with a solar panel can sell directly his/her excess electricity to another user, and vice versa. Such markets have huge potentials as, apart from bringing extra profit to their participants, they can also contribute to increasing the uptakes of renewables.

However, such p2p trading requires complex interactions and data exchanges among various existing and new market players, inevitably introducing several security and privacy issues. Considering the time and computational constraints of the market operations, as well as the interconnectedness and interdependence between different market players, ensuring secure data exchanges in p2p markets is not trivial. Entities need to authenticate each other and be assured of the integrity of the messages they receive. Similarly, ensuring that personal data of users are not revealed to any party is not straightforward. Examples of personal data are users' names, addresses, electricity consumption, preferences, monthly bills, etc.

The aim of this project is to apply (a combination of) various (computationally-demanding) advanced cryptographic technologies, such as blockchain, smart contracts and secure multiparty computation, to design p2p electricity trading solutions that achieve a good balance between security, user privacy, usability and energy efficiency.

Please contact Dr Mustafa Mustafa (mustafa.mustafa@manchester.ac.uk) for further information!

Person specification

For information

Essential

Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You must be capable of performing at a very high level.
  • You must have a self-driven interest in uncovering and solving unknown problems and be able to work hard and creatively without constant supervision.

Desirable

Applicants will be required to evidence the following skills and qualifications.

  • You will possess determination (which is often more important than qualifications) although you'll need a good amount of both.
  • You will have good time management.

General

Applicants will be required to address the following.

  • Discuss your final year Undergraduate project work - and if appropriate your MSc project work.
  • How well does your previous study prepare you for undertaking Postgraduate Research?
  • Comment on your transcript/predicted degree marks, outlining both strong and weak points.
  • Why do you believe you are suitable for doing Postgraduate Research?
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