Steering Group Meeting – 11th April 2018

08 May 2018

The 11th Power Responsive Steering Group meeting took place on 11th April 2018 with discussions focusing on ‘Development of regional markets and price discovery‘, including:

  • Development of regional markets for flexibility – DNO and Suppliers’ plans
  • Price discovery for demand side flexibility

The meeting summary and discussion snapshot have now been published and are available to download from the following links:

Steering Group Meeting – 31st January 2018

26 Feb 2018

The 10th Power Responsive Steering Group meeting took place on 31st January 2018 with discussions focusing on ‘Sources of Demand Side Flexibility – assets and providers’, including:

  • What flexibility services are offered at an asset level,
  • How and into which markets do assets appear best suited,
  • and what (if any) under utilised potential is there for load response, small-scale generation, and electricity storage

The meeting summary and discussion snapshot can be viewed and downloaded from the links below:

Power Responsive Annual Report 2017

07 Feb 2018

We are pleased to announce the publication of the Power Responsive Annual Report for 2017. The report has been designed for an audience with a good understanding of demand side flexibility (DSF), and serves to celebrate achievements to date, present a view of the current ‘state of play’ for DSF, and look ahead to flexibility opportunities.

We have built upon the 2016 report, in particular on metrics for participation within DSF markets, from which we hope to benchmark against in future years.

We’d like to thank Sustainability First for their assistance in preparing the report, Association for Decentralised Energy for conducting the self reporting survey through their membership, and to all who contributed their time at metrics steering groups.

Product Roadmap for Frequency Response and Reserve

19 Dec 2017

National Grid as System Operator (SO) has today published its Product Roadmap for frequency response and reserve markets. It marks an important milestone in the wider review of balancing services undertaken through the System Needs and Product Strategy earlier this year.

The Product Roadmap sets out the actions to be taken forward for frequency response and reserve markets and details the principles that will govern the way that balancing services are procured in future.

Visit the Future of Balancing Services to download the Product Roadmap.

How smart charging can help unlock flexible capacity from EVs

12 Dec 2017

Dagoberto Cedillos, Strategy & Innovation Lead at Open Energi explores how smart charging can help unlock flexible capacity from Electric Vehicles. Electric Vehicles (EVs) have taken off in 2017 with […]

Power Responsive Flexibility Forum

05 Dec 2017

The latest Power Responsive Flexibility Forum took place on Thursday 11th January 2017, in London.

The agenda included updates from BEIS, Ofgem, & National Grid, touching upon:

  • Product Simplification Road Map  –  the first opportunity to hear directly what this means for flexibility providers.
  • System Planning Opportunities – National Grid’s Network Options Assessment team explored how System Planning could provide a new opportunity for demand side flexibility.
  • Updates from BEIS and Ofgem from the Smart Systems Forum, and Charging Futures Forum
  • Recent balancing services procurement and the Power Responsive Annual Report.
  • Surgeries/drop-ins throughout the day allowed attendees to speak to experts from: the Capacity Market team, Power Potential Project, and Balancing Services Account Managers.

Please see our Flexibility Forum summary note with links to presentation slides. If you wish to join us at future forums, please register your details using the form at the bottom of the page.

Demand response turns liquid assets into real revenue for Bournemouth Water

29 Nov 2017

With many utility companies already seeing Demand Side Response (DSR) work for them, it was an easy decision for Bournemouth Water to get involved. Energy Adviser, Matthew Burton shares his story.

 At Bournemouth Water, it’s our responsibility to keep the taps on for half a million households and businesses across Dorset, Hampshire and Wiltshire. Each day, we supply 140 million litres of drinking water to our customers.

We have a significant number of sites, most of them running energy-intensive assets such as water pumps, as well as back-up generation. With a corporate commitment to deliver operational excellence, we regularly review our energy use and costs to make sure we are optimising what we do.

It was through this process of continual improvement that we began to explore the opportunities that existed through demand side flexibility.

With many water companies (such as Wessex Water and United Utilities) already seeing the benefits from using their energy in a smarter way, we decided to reach out to one of the UK’s DSR aggregators, KiWi Power, to see how our assets could be best put to work.

Carefully tailored solutions

The company was keen to find the right solution for each of our sites, so it sent down its engineers to investigate. They got to work analysing half-hourly data relating to each site’s energy use and conducted full onsite surveys to see which assets could deliver demand side services. With this information, the company created specially tailored solutions for each site.

The next step was to get the right technology in place, so we could begin to participate. This was done at zero cost to us and with very little disruption. KiWi Power installed its own, in-house developed, second-by-second meters at each of our sites, which would work with our existing high-voltage metering systems.

A wide range of DSR programmes

Bournemouth Water has implemented the flexibility of demand side response while keeping full control of operating its systems within set internal parameters.

Using the new meters, the aggregator remotely monitors and sends signals to our site controllers and Programmable Logic Controller units (PLCs) so we can make an automated decision to use the full range of our demand side assets. It can also send visual signals to our shift workers on site should they need to start local diesel generators or stop scheduled pumping.

Bournemouth Water has implemented the flexibility of demand side response while keeping full control of operating its systems within set internal parameters.

This almost-instant flexibility allows us to take part in a wide range of programmes, namely Frequency Control by Demand Management (FCDM), Static Firm Frequency Response (FFR), Short Term Operating Reserve (STOR) and TRIAD avoidance (half hourly settlement periods).

One of the biggest benefits has been the fact that providing DSR doesn’t interfere with the day-to-day running of our sites. This is particularly important because of the critical nature of some of our equipment, particularly our water pumps. If a reservoir is full, for example, it wouldn’t be safe or practical for water pumps to be powered down, or switched off.

Working closely with our aggregator, we were able to build a vital layer of defence behind the DSR controls. Should a signal arrive during a critical time, the system automatically overrides it, putting the business and our customers first.

Feeling the full flow of benefits

Since we began providing DSR, our business has earned regular revenue across the full portfolio of DSR products. Another benefit has been the improved resilience of our generators. Regular testing under our DSR contract means we have total peace of mind that our generators will be fit for purpose during a power cut.

Participating in DSR has proven a good decision. It has provided us with a mechanism to optimise our pump scheduling, put our standby generation assets to good use and earn extra revenue for our business.

E.ON goes live with first EFR battery project

12 Nov 2017

A battery storage project developed by E.ON has become the first in Great Britain to provide Enhanced Frequency Response (EFR) services to the grid. Plant Manager Luke Ellis explains how the 10MW installation near Sheffield came to life.

When we pushed the button to begin operations at our new battery project at Blackburn Meadows it was an exciting moment for all the team. E.ON has been investing in battery storage systems around the world for a number of years and the EFR process offered us the chance to deploy this emerging technology in a new way.

It’s fitting in a way that Blackburn Meadows has seen such a technological breakthrough. This was a brownfield site when E.ON took it over. It had been home to a coal-fired plant from the early 1900s until its closure in the 1980s.

Now we have a ground-breaking battery project running alongside our biomass plant that turns recycled waste wood into low-carbon electricity. It produces enough power for 40,000 homes. The facility also provides district heating to customers in the local area, including Sheffield Forgemasters and Sheffield Arena.

Battery first

We are at the forefront of keeping the nation’s electricity grid stable using battery storage. One challenge is making sure that frequency stays within strict limits.

The battery system works by discharging power to the network when frequency falls or withdrawing power if supply is greater than demand. The speed of response is the big step forward. All this happens in just a fraction of a second.

The battery is housed inside four 40-ft shipping containers. It’s made up of more than 1,000 lithium-ion batteries divided into racks. The battery holds the same amount of energy as 500,000 mobile phone batteries. It operates around the clock and is constantly making tiny adjustments that help to balance the grid.

One of the big pluses for us was the ability to integrate the battery’s control system with our biomass power plant. It means that our operators can monitor both 24/7.

Journey to switch-on

E.ON took part in the EFR auction run by National Grid in autumn 2016 and we were named as one of the successful bids. Under the contract, we’ll be providing EFR services to the grid for the next four years.

The battery system works by discharging power to the network when frequency falls or withdrawing power if supply is greater than demand. The speed of response is the big step forward. All this happens in just a fraction of a second.

It’s fantastic that we’re the first project to go live. We’d already done a lot of detailed work to be ready to go. In fact, when the auction took place, we were only a couple of weeks away from signing contracts to start construction.

The process from design through to commissioning took about a year. One of the biggest challenges we faced was dealing with a technology that was new to all of us. It was important to build a good relationship with the Distribution Network Operator (DNO).

The DNO needed to be sure that our planned operation wouldn’t have any negative effects on the local network. We worked closely with our supplier Nidec to provide this reassurance. Nidec also carried out modelling work on our behalf to understand how the project would integrate with the wider grid.

E.ON’s renewable goals

The Blackburn Meadows project shows that battery solutions have enormous potential in the UK. It certainly fits with E.ON’s aims of helping our customers access new renewable solutions such as solar and storage technologies. There will undoubtedly be more opportunities for batteries as the technology matures.

As for the future, we’re taking a keen interest in National Grid’s System Needs and Product Strategy to see what opportunities lie ahead. Having the right regulatory environment is also important. Several consultations involving Ofgem and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy are under way on the road ahead for storage.

In the meantime, we’re all very proud of what’s been achieved at Blackburn Meadows. It’s great to see the project come to fruition.

Steering Group Meeting – 11th October 2017

31 Oct 2017

The second Steering Group meeting for year 3 of Power Responsive took place on 11th October 2017 with discussions focusing on ‘the whole system benefit’, including:

  • What is meant by ‘whole system’?
  • How industry work streams are tackling ‘whole system’.
  • National Grid’s Product Roadmap and ENA Commercial Principles paper.
  • Customer views on ‘whole system’ approach

The meeting summary is available to download from the following link.

Ofgem – Regulatory Sandbox

03 Oct 2017

Ofgem have launched the second window of the regulatory sandbox, which will be open for expressions of interest until 27 October 2017.

The regulatory sandbox allows innovators to trial innovative business products, services and business models that cannot currently operate under the existing regulations. Trials run for a set period of time with a limited number of customers.

Ofgem want to support innovative ideas that bring benefits to consumers. This also helps them to understand emerging trends in the sector and identify areas in which regulation may need to adapt to sustain innovation.

Find out more through their blog, and how to submit an expression of interest through the links below.