As offshore renewables become competitive with other sources of electricity, their growth may be limited by the challenge of balancing power flows on electricity networks.
We are partnering with Energy Systems Catapult, academics, utility companies and others to explore the ways that energy systems can become more flexible and so use more offshore renewables.
Future ‘smart’ energy systems will integrate energy flows between the electricity and gas networks, and transport fuel supply chains, featuring new and improved technologies for understanding systems-level behaviour, energy storage (e.g. large lithium-ion batteries), automation of distribution networks, use of hydrogen, and peer-to-peer energy trading, among others.
We are mapping the opportunities for innovative businesses in these areas and working with our partners and government to establish real-world demonstrators to accelerate the adoption of smart energy systems.
We are keen to hear from SMEs and academics with relevant technologies and expertise who can enhance our efforts or benefit from the ‘exploitation runway’ we intend to establish by linking technology de-risking capabilities of universities and catapults with real-world demonstrations of smart, integrated energy systems.
We have mapped out the requirements for a smart energy systems demonstrator, using the community around our Levenmouth Demonstration Turbine in Fife as an example.
Our studies to date have covered electricity distribution system mapping, cyber-security requirements, distribution-level storage options at multiple timescales, hydrogen network opportunities, distributed heat storage, local grid support services from renewables assets, and fuel poverty alleviation.