The UK is working toward a target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. To achieve this there is significant investment in the electricity industry to accommodate increased levels of renewable generation, electrification of heat/transport and growth in low carbon technologies (LCTs). This Electricity Flexibility and Forecasting Systems (EFFS) project developed a solution to enable Western Power Distribution (WPD) to actively forecast, select and manage the flexibility services in their network instead of traditional network reinforcement. The project is being run by WPD and funded under the Ofgem Electricity Network Innovation Competition (NIC).
WPD had a system to forecast the demand on their system based on weather and historic profiles. They also had developed a market system to interact with aggregators to provide Distributed Energy Resources (DER) services in the form of demand/generation reduction and increases. The challenge WPD faced was the ability to bring this together to identify the following on a week-ahead time scale:
- The location where the network constraints would be experienced on the system
- The specific customer(s) that would be able to resolve the constraints
- The optimum customer(s) to dispatch to resolve those constraints
- Any further risks that may occur during contingency configurations
PSC as experts in power system analysis and study automation were able to support WPD in the core of this project. PSC worked with all the parties in the project to develop a tool to integrate demand forecasting, flexibility service providers and system network models. PSC developed a tool utilizing PSSE and Python to carry out the following studies:
- Time series and contingency power system analysis for the week ahead to identify potential network constraints
- Analysis of available flexibility service providers capability to resolve those constraints
- Processing market offers to identify the optimum services
- Optimum service selection and validation of constraints
The EFFS tool allowed WPD to investigate the potential benefits of utilizing customers on their network to provide flexibility rather than traditional reinforcement for resolving potential network constraints. The tool is undergoing a trial on a region of its network to analyze potential benefits before it is rolled out across the wider footprint.