UKPN announces flexibility tender results

UK Power Networks has announced the results of a tender to procure flexible energy services.

UKPN announces flexibility tender results

Flexibility is a rapidly emerging new market for generators, including renewables, to sell services to electricity networks. It saves customers money by using distributed energy resources to offer additional capacity on the network at peak times instead of the traditional method of building new infrastructure.

UK Power Networks’ second flexibility tender has successfully offered contracts for a total of 18.2MW of power from six companies across eight different locations to install or recruit new flexible capacity with a total value of more than £450,000. The technologies involved are a mix of energy storage, demand side response, renewable energy and other generators.

Barry Hatton, director of asset management at UK Power Networks, said: “Flexibility offers a wealth of opportunities for the energy resources connected to our network like wind and solar plants, but also demand side response to help us create an open, transparent and accountable new market for their services.

“All of the bids we accepted in this tender round met our robust economic criteria to ensure they will benefit our customers by offering lower costs in comparison to the traditional approach of building new assets. The UK is a world-leader in smart grid technology and flexibility has a key role to play as we move towards a decarbonised, decentralised and digitised network that will offer significant benefits to our customers.”

UK Power Networks is using the online platform Piclo (formerly known as Open Utility) to host and manage the bidding process. Piclo is an online platform developed with UK Power Networks which matches energy providers’ resources with the network operator’s local need for flexible energy resources.

Piclo enables flexible energy resources to explore an interactive map that matches providers with pinch-points on the network, places where UK Power Networks is seeking flexibility to add capacity.

In 2018 UK Power Networks became the first network operator in the country to commit to a radical ‘Flexibility First’ approach, offering its requirements for new capacity to the distributed energy market ahead of the traditional approach of building network reinforcement. 

Flexibility contracts have been offered in the following locations:

  • Brandon
  • Leighton Buzzard
  • Lewes Newhaven
  • Lithos
  • Merton
  • Mill Hill
  • Romney Warren
  • St Helier

Further details about the successful contracts will be announced in due course.



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