In the hopes of advancing British flexibility, SMS plc, Engage Consulting Limited and Nederlands Meet Institute (NMi) are part of a new consortium that will test interoperable demand-side response applications.
The project will see energy solutions firm SMS join hands with energy sector consultancy Engage and NMI, an independent specialist for measurement technology testing and inspection services.
Funded by the UK Government’s Net Zero Innovation Portfolio, the project will deliver laboratory testing schemes for interoperable Demand Side Response (DSR) applications. This includes behind-the-meter Energy Smart Appliances (ESAs) such as electric vehicle chargers, batteries, white goods and heating systems.
According to SMS, unlocking the domestic demand-side response market is a key enabler of the UK’s transition to a secure, flexible energy system and the Government’s wider ambition to reach Net Zero by 2050.
Mark Hamilton, managing director of FlexiGrid at SMS, said: “To accommodate the shift to a distributed renewable energy system, flexibility will be required from many different sources, but will increasingly need to come from domestic behind-the-meter ESAs like EV chargers, heat pumps, storage heating and battery storage.
“However, this will require new levels of control and standards to be introduced to allow assets to be aggregated and operated as a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) and this is ultimately what we hope to achieve through this new programme.”
As part of the project, SMS will develop a new version of its FlexiGrid aggregation platform to test ESAs against new interoperable DSR applications. The energy infrastructure company will also expand its existing smart metering test facilities to accommodate the testing of ESAs in mock domestic settings.
Engage will manage the project and drive the overall technical solution while NMI will design and develop the testing schemes and provide test execution assurance.
Richard Cullen, director at Engage, said, “demand response is widely recognised as being a crucial component of our future energy system. This project will play a key role in progressing the standards and interoperability required to deliver it at scale.
“Along with our partners NMi and SMS, we are very much looking forward to making this important project a big success”.
The next stage of the UK’s energy transition will involve a massive increase in distributed renewable energy generated and stored by homes and businesses across the country.
This will involve an estimated 30GW of low-carbon flexible assets to be deployed across the grid by 2030, representing a three-fold increase on today’s levels.