This week, Scottish software company Smarter Grid Solutions (SGS) announced that it will be expanding into Europe after completing successful trials with a utility company in Germany.
SGS’s German trial demonstrated “dynamic curtailment,” where very small amounts of electricity produced by renewable energy generators like wind farms or solar parks are reduced if too much power is pumped into the grid.
Taking a dynamic curtailment approach can double the hosting capacity for renewable energy and vastly reduces the amount of curtailment required by existing dispatch methods.
As well as reducing curtailment, SGS’s distributed energy resource management system (DERMS) technology allows distribution system operators (DSOs) to reduce connection times and the requirement for grid upgrades, which in turn improves customer service, increases efficiency and reduces customer bills, according to SGS.
DERM technology can now be applied across Europe thanks to regulatory changes introduced by the European Union’s (EU’s) Clean Energy Package. Alan Gooding, co-founder of SGS, will lead the expansion as European general manager, in addition to his responsibilities as UK general manager and EVP of channel and partners.
“Only last week we hosted a European DSO in the UK, running through the use cases that can be supported by our products and how they deliver value to DSOs,” said Gooding.
From a one-way system to a two-way system
In the past, large coal and gas-fired power stations were connected to the main national transmission network, with their electricity then fed down into local distribution networks. Today, many renewable energy generators as well as batteries and other smart grid devices are connected to distribution networks, meaning power flows in both directions on the grid. This is what triggers the need for DSOs to implement new forms of control and system flexibility, such as DERMS and dynamic curtailment.
SGS said that its DERMS software is already adding around 1.3 GW of renewable energy, battery storage and flexibility services to global electricity grids.