Notes on completion
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DNO Group
Participant DNOs
DNO area
Project title
Project summary
Estimated Project funding
Please provide an approximate figure of the total cost of the project and the LCN funding you are applying for.
Total cost of Project
LCN funding
Low Carbon Networks Fund
Screening Submission Pro-forma
Electricity North West Limited
Scottish and Southern Energy Limited
Electricity North West and Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution
CLASS: Customer Led Ancillary Services Support
NGET manages the demand-generation despatch by purchasing balancing services from
a range of participants via mandatory provision and/or competitive tenders.
In order to deliver the UK decarbonisation targets NGET has forecast that it will need to
procure larger volumes of balancing services in the future. There are three significant
changes to the GB power system that contribute to the UK's future challenge:
The increase in the maximum allowable generation loss from 1.3GW to 1.8GW in
2014 (associated with the next generation of nuclear power stations and the
change to NGET's Security and Quality of Supply Standard);
The decrease in system inertia, making the system inherently less stable;
The geographic and variable output of renewable generation (ie wind and PV).
Are other sustainable, carbon neutral sources of low cost ancillary services available to
manage both national and local system stability and to minimise costs to customers?
CLASS will demonstrate a low risk transferable solution which automatically or on
request delivers ancillary services. The Method delivers a zero carbon and non-intrusive
provision technique for ancillary services required by NGET and future DSOs.
£12.1 million
£10.9 million
Please provide a narrative which explains the Problem(s) which the Project is seeking to address.
Please describe the Method(s) which are being trialled. Please outline how the Method(s) could solve the Problem. The type of
Method should be identified where possible e.g. technical or commercial.
System Stability and Voltage Control in a Low Carbon Future
The decarbonisation challenge is driving changes in the fuel source, location and
characteristics of generation in the UK. It is expected that renewable and low carbon
generation levels will increase significantly and this will present three specific technical
challenges for the UK in maintaining demand-generation balancing:
The displacement of traditional fossil-fuelled plant by wind generation will have the
effect of decreasing the system inertia meaning that in the event of the loss of a
large generator the system frequency drops faster. In addition, the ability of the
wind generation to respond to such a loss is less; as sources such as wind and PV
have little or no ability to increase their output to compensate;
The new generation of nuclear stations are much larger at 1.8GW compared with
the current maximum size of 1.3GW. This means that, with all other things being
equal, a single loss would result in a much larger frequency deviation;
The output of renewable sources such as wind and PV whilst consistent at the
national level varies considerably within a geographic region. This inconsistency
presents new voltage control challenges to both the UK's transmission and
distribution network operators, which would otherwise require expensive capital
investment to manage.
Economic Considerations
The purchase costs of balancing services, which was valued at £547 million for 2010/11
(Source: 2010/11 Procurement Guidelines Report, National Grid), is ultimately borne by
GB customers and is set to increase significantly as the UK moves to a low carbon
electricity system (Source: Operating the Electricity Transmission Networks in 2020,
June 2011, National Grid).
Low Carbon Considerations
The current approach to provide a balancing response is to use generators operating as
spinning reserve, which can automatically deliver power when required to manage a
frequency deviation. As the scale of response increases, the cost of generators
operating in this manner will become more expensive as well as constraining wind
output levels. As carbon prices can be expected to increase over time, this can also be
expected to have an economic impact.
CLASS is proposing to test the provision of ancillary services by the innovative
management of the HV distribution network. A feasibility study, undertaken by The
University of Manchester and Parson Brinckerhoff, has proven the viability of the
concept. The equipment will be configured to deliver the service autonomously in
response to a system trigger or NGET could command the service via an interface (to be
developed) between NGET's and ENWL's control systems. Monitoring equipment will be
fitted in parts of the distribution networks and in selected customers' premises to
monitor the provision of the services. In conjunction with customer surveys we aim to
test the hypothesis that customers see no impact on the quality of service delivered.
CLASS proposes to demonstrate this Method on 80 primary networks, serving around
400 000 customers. The networks will be chosen to provide a UK representative
Method(s) continued
Funding commentary
Provide a commentary on the accuracy of your funding estimate. If the Project has phases, please identify the approximate
cost of each phase
Specific Requirements (please tick which of the specific requirements this project fulfils)
A specific piece of new (i.e. unproven in GB) equipment (including control and communications
systems and software) that has a Direct Impact on the Distribution System)
A novel arrangement or application of existing Distribution System equipment (including control and
communications systems software)
A novel operational practice directly related to the operation of the Distribution System
A novel commercial arrangement
sample covering the range and mix of customers, and the range of urban and rural
network configurations. The trials will be configured to test the provision of ancillary
services to both NGET and ENWL. Initially a series of trials will test the provision of
each ancillary service separately, and further trials will ascertain the operating regimes
for provision of these services in parallel. There will be two key pieces of research
activity: i) the outcomes analysis and ii) the market analysis. This research will explore
the following questions:
1. Is a DNO able to generate ancillary services for use by NGET and a DSO now or in
the future?
2. If so, how much is a DNO able to provide and how does the service vary over
3. How does the provision impact the customer, in terms of quality of service and
terms of carbon and costs savings?
4. Should these services be mandated or provided commercially?
CLASS will inform the future functionality to aggregate and highlight, via a dashboard,
the combined delivery capability for each ancillary service from the distribution network
operators. This would provide information for real-time and future provision purposes.
The CLASS project will run for three years and has been split into three phases, totalling
£12.1 million, including project management and contingency. The cost estimates have
been developed in collaboration with project partners.
Phase 1 Technology Development (£7.2 million):
1A Configuration and installation of network equipment;
1B Design, build, test, and integrate NGET control systems to Electricity
North West control systems and commission.
Phase 2 Field trials and research (£2 million):
2A Assess and analyse use of ancillary services; and
2B Undertake customer impact and market analyses.
Phase 3 Learning & Dissemination (£0.4 million):
3A Develop dissemination channels; and
3B Deliver learning through varied dissemination activities.
Accelerates the development of a low carbon energy sector & has the potential to
deliver net financial benefits to existing and/or future customers. Merged evaluation
criteria, as set out in decision letter.
The DNO must demonstrate that the Solution makes a contribution to the Carbon Plan and has the potential to deliver
financial benefits.
Has a Direct Impact on the operation of the distribution network
A Second Tier Project must demonstrate that the Method(s) being trialled will have a Direct Impact (as defined in v.4 of the
Governance Document) on the operation of a DNO's Distribution System.
Generate knowledge that can be shared amongst all network operators
The DNO must explain the learning which it expects the Method(s) it is trialling to deliver. The DNO must demonstrate that it
has a robust methodology in place to capture the learning from the Trial(s).
The proposed Method utilises existing network infrastructure in an innovative way to
make available a set of ancillary services. CLASS will utilise the knowledge and
experience of two major technology providers, Siemens and GE Digital Energy.
We will utilise a number of components developed by Siemens and enhanced to meet
the project requirements. In addition we will build upon the development work
undertaken by GE Digital Energy, funded under a First Tier project with another DNO, to
share information between a DNO's PowerOn Fusion and NGET's EMS system by
developing a command and control interface. This will enable NGET and/ or the DNO to
call upon a response as required. Once proven these providers will make the
technology available for implementation by the other GB DNOs.
When proven successful the provision of ancillary services by distribution network
operators will deliver a profound change to the ancillary service market and the project
will explore the most appropriate mechanism for delivery of each of the services (ie
through commercial mechanisms or codified as Grid Code requirements on distribution
network operators).
The Solution has the potential to redefine the provision of ancillary services in the UK.
Learning delivered:
New techniques for DNOs to provide ancillary services;
A solution to integrate DNO and NGET EMS systems in a way that allows NGET and
DNOs to call upon a response as required;
Insight into the future potential of the Method across the UK and the
arrangements that could efficiently facilitate adoption.
The consortium will develop a targeted learning and dissemination plan, whereby a
systematic approach for capturing the learning is embedded into the project and the
knowledge gained is shared with our stakeholders.
The conclusions and recommendations from the market analysis element of the project
will be made available to all our stakeholders, especially DECC and Ofgem, as the
Solution has the potential to redefine the ancillary services market and deliver
significant value back to GB customers. CLASS will advise the relevant governing
bodies of any changes to codes to allow the technique to be applied.
The Method can be easily implemented by all DNOs through low cost adaption of their
existing systems.
Please tick if the project conforms to the default IPR arrangements set out in
the LCN Fund Governance Document?
If the DNO wishes to deviate from the default requirement for IPR then it must demonstrate how the learning will be
disseminated to other DNOs.
Focus on Methods that are at the trialling stage
Demonstrate why you have not previously used this Solution (including where the Solution involves commercial
arrangements) and why LCN funding is required to undertake it. This must include why you would not run the trial as part of
your normal course of business and why the Solution is not R&D.
The technology utilised is mature, but it has never been trialled with this proposed
application. An Innovation Funding Incentive project, undertaken in 2011/12,
confirmed that existing equipment could be modified to deliver ancillary services.
CLASS will deploy the technology across 80 primary networks and demonstrate how it
can automatically and on demand deliver the ancillary services and how provision of
each service varies over time. To understand how the provision of each service varies
over time we will install monitoring equipment across the trial networks and leave on
the network for up to ten years. The trial networks will provide a continual source of
data for NGET and DNOs enabling them to track the change in the network's response
during the transition to a low carbon economy. In addition, some monitoring equipment
will be located in customers' premises, to record any observable changes for
comparison against a control group not part of the trial. Along with customer surveys,
this will test the hypothesis that there is no impact on the quality of service.
CLASS will assemble a range of partners from across the energy supply chain. A
wide-scale coordinated study into the provision of ancillary services by DNOs needs to
be facilitated by LCN funds, since the individual partners would not be able to develop
and co-ordinate such a trial under their normal business models.
The Project will develop a test-bed for observing the long term trends in demand
response from distribution networks.
Project Partners and external resourcing/funding
The DNO should provide details of any Project Partners who will be actively involved in the Project and are prepared to devote
time, resources and/or funding to the Project. If the DNO has not identified any specific Project Partners, it should provide
details of the type of Project Partners it wishes to attract to the Project.
Derogations or exemptions
The DNO should outline if they consider that the Project will require any derogations, exemptions or changes to the regulatory
Electricity North West and Scottish and Southern Energy has sought to build a strong
group of project partners and suppliers, bringing expertise in technology, research,
customer engagement and project management all with a desire to prove the
techniques can be employed. All Project Partners will be involved in dissemination.
National Grid Electricity Transmission, Electricity North West and Scottish and
Southern Energy will test the provision of the ancillary services.
GE Digital Energy will develop the interface between NGET's and ENWL's Network
Management System.
Siemens will provide and configure the required equipment fitted to the network.
The University of Manchester will undertake the data analysis in the trials.
Redpoint and Imperial College, London will jointly undertake the market analysis
A Supplier will install monitoring devices in customers' premises and survey customers
to assess whether the provision of ancillary services is noticeable.
Additional support will be provided by Chiltern Power and Parsons Brinckerhoff.
Electricity North West and Scottish and Southern Energy do not, at this early stage in
the development of the project, believe that it or any of its partners require a
derogation or exemption to implement the project.
Customer impact
The DNO should outline any planned interaction with Customers or Customer’s premises as part of the Project, and any other
direct customer impact (such as amended contractual or charging arrangements, or supply interruptions).
Please use the following section to add any further detail you feel may support your
Customer Relationships
Electricity North West and Scottish and Southern Energy will publicise this project as
part of their wider carbon agenda and specifically target those customers connected to
the distribution networks in the trial areas.
Customer Impact
The project will test the hypothesis that no customer will experience a reduction in the
quality of service provided by Electricity North West or Scottish and Southern Energy
during the trials.
Customer Engagement Plan
Customer publicity will be managed through a detailed customer engagement plan
which will be submitted as part of the full Second Tier bid.
Scottish and Southern Energy brings the innovative techniques developed within the
NINES project. Electricity North West and Scottish and Southern Energy have been
discussing individual roles and responsibilities and we will jointly develop the scope of
the project and the roles and responsibilities prior to the Full Submission.
Contact name
Contact Address
Direct telephone line
Job title
Simon M Brooke
Electricity North West Limited
Network Strategy
Hartington Road
01772 848805
Low Carbon Projects Manager
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