UK Power Networks (UKPN) will trial new smart grid technology from Faraday Grid that is designed to create a smart, flexible electricity system that increases the capacity to deliver more renewable energy at a lower cost to consumers.
The Faraday Grid is an autonomous, self-balancing network installed within an existing electricity grid. Comprising a network of independent Faraday Exchangers, it is designed to automatically smooth the intermittency and volatility of renewable generation and new demands like electric vehicles and reduce the need for backup generation and balancing services. Implemented at scale, it has the potential to double the amount of renewable generation a grid can carry.
The agreement will see the world's first Faraday Exchangers deployed in UK Power Network's existing London network for live testing in spring 2019. The testing will assess the impact of the Faraday Grid on the network, such as improving capacity and avoiding more costly infrastructure upgrades.
Andrew Scobie, founder and CEO of Faraday, said: "Energy systems around the world are going through unprecedented change to meet increasing demand for electricity in a sustainable way. Renewable energy has a critical role to play and it is crucial it is delivered at the lowest cost, so that the transformative benefits of electricity can continue to be enjoyed by all. The Faraday Grid is specifically designed to ensure energy systems are equipped to meet society's need for affordable, secure and clean energy long into the future."
Ian Cameron, head of innovation at UK Power Networks, added: "We have recognised that Faraday's technology has the potential to be transformational for distribution networks and the wider energy system. The technology is aligned to our ambition to become an energy platform business. We are delighted to be the company's lead UK partner for testing and demonstrating its impacts in a distribution network."