A new balancing service, Demand Turn Up, is set to be delivered with an innovative twist. For the first time, National Grid is joining forces with a regional DNO (Distribution Network Operator) to co-ordinate its delivery – and meet the needs of both the national power system and local power networks simultaneously.
In the trial, National Grid will essentially share the service with DNO Western Power Distribution (WPD), which is responsible for electricity distribution in the Midlands, South West and Wales.
Behind the scenes, WPD will keep National Grid briefed on its requirements, and as system operator National Grid will then act as a single point of contact, instructing participants in the interests of both parties.
Demand Turn Up is a new balancing service for 2016 which incentivises companies to shift their power usage – or reduce their generation – when there is excessive power on the system, especially from renewable sources such as wind and solar.
It will run from May to September across two windows – overnight and weekend daytime. The overnight window will operate between 11.30pm and 8.30am, with this extended to 9am in June, July and August. Weekend daytime will run from 1-4pm on Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays.
Participants can respond in one of two ways. For large energy users, they can shift their demand to make best use of renewable energy on the system. For generators who are connected to the distribution network, they can reduce their output when called upon.
“It’s the first time National Grid has shared a balancing service with a DNO, so it’s an exciting and pioneering trial,” said Account Manager Rhiannon Grey. “WPD has a lot of solar generation on its network, so its requirements for balancing the system align very nicely with ours. And by acting as a single point of contact, we’ll keep it simple for anyone who’s participating.
“While we’re working with one DNO on this trial, we hope the learnings could inform a nationwide and enduring solution going forward. This type of collaboration is going to become increasingly important as DNOs become more active in managing their networks.”
Some 21 organisations have submitted expressions of interest in taking part in this year’s Demand Turn Up service and National Grid will award contracts in mid-April. For any companies interested in participating, the current year is closed, but there will be further opportunities to participate in 2017.
To find out more, contact National Grid’s commercial operations team at firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out the roles that National Grid and DNOs play in the electricity market visit www2.nationalgrid.com/uk/our-company/electricity/ and www2.nationalgrid.com/UK/Our-company/electricity/Distribution-Network-Operator-Companies/