An OpenADR Client (Virtual End Node or VEN) usually represents an entity that owns controllable devices. This can be electric vehicles, generators, wind turbines, refrigerated warehouses, et cetera. The client connects to a server, usualy representing a utility company, to discuss possible cooperation on energy usage throughout the day.

Example VEN

A straightforward example of an OpenADR VEN, which has one report and an event handler, would look like this:

import asyncio
from datetime import timedelta
from openleadr import OpenADRClient, enable_default_logging


async def collect_report_value():
    # This callback is called when you need to collect a value for your Report
    return 1.23

async def handle_event(event):
    # This callback receives an Event dict.
    # You should include code here that sends control signals to your resources.
    return 'optIn'

# Create the client object
client = OpenADRClient(ven_name='ven123',

# Add the report capability to the client

# Add event handling capability to the client
client.add_handler('on_event', handle_event)

# Run the client in the Python AsyncIO Event Loop
loop = asyncio.get_event_loop()

In the sections below, we’ll go into more detail.

Dealing with Events

Events are informational or instructional messages from the server (VTN) which inform you of price changes, request load reduction, et cetera. Whenever there is an Event for your VEN, your on_event handler will be called with the event is dict-form as its first parameter.

The Event consists of three main sections:

  1. A time period for when this event is supposed to be active (active_period)

  2. A list of Targets to which the Event applies (targets). This can be the VEN as a whole, or specific groups, assets, geographic areas, et cetera that this VEN represents.

  3. A list of Signals (signals), which form the content of the Event. This can be price signals, load reduction signals, et cetera. Each signal has a name, a type, multiple Intervals that contain the relative start times, and some payload value for the client to interpret.

After you evaluate all these properties, you have only one decision to make: Opt In or Opt Out. Your handler must return either the string optIn or optOut, and OpenLEADR will see to it that your response is correctly formatted for the server.

Example implementation:

async def on_event(event):
    # Check if we can opt in to this event
    first_signal = event['event_signals'][0]
    intervals = first_signal['intervals']
    target = event['target']
    return 'optIn'

An example event dict might look like this:

    'event_id': '123786-129831',
    'active_period': {'dtstart': datetime.datetime(2020, 1, 1, 12, 0, 0, tzinfo=timezone.utc),
                      'duration': datetime.timedelta(minutes=30)}
    'event_signals': [{'signal_name': 'simple',
                       'signal_type': 'level',
                       'intervals': [{'dtstart': datetime.datetime(2020, 1, 1, 12, 0, 0, tzinfo=timezone.utc),
                                      'duration': datetime.timedelta(minutes=10),
                                      'signal_payload': 1},
                                      {'dtstart': datetime.datetime(2020, 1, 1, 12, 10, 0, tzinfo=timezone.utc),
                                      'duration': datetime.timedelta(minutes=10),
                                      'signal_payload': 0},
                                      {'dtstart': datetime.datetime(2020, 1, 1, 12, 20, 0, tzinfo=timezone.utc),
                                      'duration': datetime.timedelta(minutes=10),
                                      'signal_payload': 1}],
   'targets': [{'resource_id': 'Device001'}],
   'targets_by_type': {'resource_id': ['Device001']}

Please note that you can access the targets in two ways, which may be useful if there are more than one target:

  1. As a list of Target dicts

  2. As a dictionary of targets, grouped by target type.

For example:

    'event_id': 'event123',
    # ...
    # As a list of Target dicts
    'targets': [{'resource_id': 'resource01'},
                {'resource_id': 'resource02'},
                {'group_id': 'group01'},
                {'group_id': 'group02'}],
    # Grouped by target type
    'targets_by_type': {'resource_id': ['resource01', 'resource02'],
                        'group_id': ['group01', 'group02']}

It is up to you which you want to use.

Dealing with Reports

The VTN Server will most likely want to receive some reports like metering values or availability status from you.

You can easily add reporting capabilities to your OpenADRClient object using the client.add_report method. In this method, you supply a callback function that will retrieve the current value for that measurement, as well as the resource_id, the measurement (like ‘voltage’, ‘power’, ‘temperature’, et cetera), optionally a unit and scale, and a sampling rate at which you can support this metervalue.

OpenLEADR will then offer this report to the VTN, and if they request this report from you, your callback function will automatically be called when needed.

Please see the Reporting section for detailed information.

Signing outgoing messages

You can sign your outgoing messages using a public-private key pair in PEM format. This allows the receiving party to verify that the messages are actually coming from you.

If you want your client to automatically sign your outgoing messages, use the following configuration:

async def main():
    client = OpenADRClient(ven_name='MyVEN',

In some odd cases in which the VTN that you are connecting to does not support signatures (e.g. legacy VTN’s that have not been updated to the latest OpenADR protocol), you can disable the automatic signing of outgoing message with the following configuration:

async def main():
    client = OpenADRClient(ven_name='MyVEN',

Validating incoming messages

You can validate incoming messages against a public key.

async def main():
    client = OpenADRClient(ven_name='MyVEN',

This will automatically validate check that incoming messages are signed by the private key that belongs to the provided (public) certificate. If validation fails, you will see a Warning emitted, but the message will not be delivered to your handlers, protecting you from malicious messages being processed by your system. The sending party will see an error message returned.

You should use both of the previous examples combined to secure both the incoming and the outgoing messages.

A word on polling

The OpenADR polling mechanism is very robust; there is very little chance that the client misses an important message. The downside is that there is some wasted bandwith (from polling when no relevant message is available from the VTN), and there is the risk of unnecessary VTN overload if all VENs poll synchronously.

To mitigate the last point, the OpenLEADR VEN will, by default, ‘jitter’ the pollings by up to +/- 10% or +/- 5 minutes (whichever is smallest). The same goes for delivering the reports (the data collection will still happen on synchronized moments).

If you don’t want to jitter the polling requests on your VEN, you can disable this by passing allow_jitter=False to your OpenADRClient constructor.


If you need to inspect the XML messages at certain points in the request/response chain, you can add hooks like this:

def log_outgoing_xml(content):

def log_incoming_xml(content):

client.add_hook('before_send_xml', log_outgoing_xml)
client.add_hook('after_receive_xml', log_incoming_xml)

The handlers can be normal functions or coroutines.

The following hooks are available:

  • before_send_xml: Called with one argument: content (XML string). This is the outgoing message in XML format.

  • after_receive_xml: Called with one argument: content (XML string, or any other error message that the server returned).

  • before_schema_validation: Called with one argument: content (XML string). This is the incoming message in XML format.

  • before_parse_xml: Called with one argument: content (XML string). This is the incoming message in XML format after it has been validated to be correct.

  • after_parse_xml: Called with two arguments: message_type (string) and message_payload (dict). This is the message in the OpenLEADR dict format after parsing.

Use these hooks at your own risk, an be aware that the client will wait for your hook(s) to finish before continuing.