The connection to the network of increasing amounts of renewables and micro-generation like solar PV
New load on the network from electricity dependent technologies like electric vehicles and heat pumps
When these technologies are installed in large numbers or in clusters they can cause stress on the local distribution network.
Collecting data through monitoring equipment installed at over 70 strategic points across the Northern Powergrid electricity network.
Electrical energy storage
Energy storage is being trialled at strategic rural and urban network locations to gain real-world results and understand its effectiveness as part of an overall smart grid solution.
Enhanced Automatic Voltage Control installed at both primary and secondary substations.
Real-Time thermal rating
RTTR devices combine measurement and estimation to assess the power flow headroom on a given asset.
Demand Side Response
Assessing the role customers can play in helping manage periods of peak demand.
Grand Unified Scheme
An advanced active network management control system that brings together multiple elements, allowing them to operate as a smart grid and thus optimise the network.
The Challenge of a Low Carbon Future
Achieving UK targets to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2050 will largely depend on the adoption of increased renewable energy sources and the electrification of heating and transport.
The anticipated uptake by customers of electricity dependent low carbon technologies like electric vehicles and heat pumps will creat new load on the electricity network; whilst distributed generation and the rise in residential solar PV installations is presenting network operators with a whole new set of challenges, by reversing the traditional ‘network to customer’ flow of electricity.
The Smart Grid Solution
In 2014, Northern Powergrid completed an ambitious four-year smart grid demonstration project, the Customer-Led Network Revolution (CLNR).
CLNR was one of the flagship projects delivered under regulator Ofgem’s Low Carbon Network Fund which aimed to kick-start the radical change needed to make the UK’s low carbon energy sector a reality. The project trialled innovative network technology and customer flexibility solutions
The trials are taking place on live electricity networks and with real customers. The knowledge gained is being proactively shared with all UK network operators to help build a smarter powergrid that can rise to the challenges presented by the low carbon future.