Green light for project to trial low carbon energy network resilience on Skye
07 February 2022
The Resilience as a Service (RaaS) project, led by Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) Distribution, Costain and E.ON, welcomes the positive decision to progress the development of a pilot scheme to improve energy resilience in remote and rural areas through the use of battery storage technology together with local energy resources.
The RaaS project is funded through Ofgem’s Network Innovation Competition (NIC) and brings together SSEN, smart infrastructure experts Costain and leading renewable energy and sustainable solutions provider E.ON to develop a new, market-based solution which could be applied at suitable sites across Great Britain to improve security of supply for local communities.
The first phase of the project has now been completed, providing key insight into the commercial application of RaaS and developing a detailed technical design for the proposed scheme. Engagement and consultation with industry and electricity network customers indicated strong support for the project to be taken forward to demonstration stage. These positive outcomes are central to the decision to progress to the second phase, which will see deployment and operation of RaaS for a trial period of up to two years.
The RaaS scheme will be designed to restore power swiftly and automatically to customers in the event of a fault, temporarily operating the network in islanded1 mode as SSEN engineers work to identify and resolve the issue. During normal network operation, a RaaS service provider would be able to use the battery to deliver other services to the electricity system, helping to provide a cost-effective solution for the network.
The RaaS concept aims to improve service to customers in areas susceptible to power outages, where traditional reinforcement or use of network operator owned standby generation to provide network resilience would represent significant cost. RaaS would also allow local renewables to continue generating and exporting energy at times when the grid is disrupted, making the most of zero carbon electricity and sustaining the associated income for those who have installed such schemes.
The location chosen for the technical demonstration of RaaS is Drynoch primary substation on the Isle of Skye. Deployment at this site will advance the development of a scheme that is beneficial for customers, and replicable at other sites across the country.
To learn more about the RaaS project, click here.
Sarah Rigby, SSEN Innovation Project Manager said:
“The opportunity to now put this idea into practice is very welcome, as RaaS offers significant potential to improve security of supply for our customers. The approach is in line with everything that SSEN wants to do in delivering a low carbon, cost effective energy system and using flexible solutions and services to operate our network dynamically. We look forward to sharing what we learn as we work to successfully apply the scheme at our first site.”
Simon Duncan, E.ON Director of B2B Solutions said:
“E.ON is leveraging their extensive expertise in network engineering, batteries and demand side response to bring energy resilience to remote areas like the Isle of Skye. This project is the first of its kind, so it’s exciting to be leading the energy transition with such a revolutionary idea.”
1in islanded mode, an area of the network is disconnected from the main electricity grid and operates independently.
Progress of Costain’s journey to date since the launch of our plan can be found on our Climate Change Solutions Hub.
To find out more about our energy storage solutions, visit our Energy transition pages on the website.