Reactive Technologies has signed a milestone agreement with National Grid ESO to support the system operator to fulfil its 2025 zero carbon goals by measuring system inertia for the first time. The agreement will see National Grid ESO implement Reactive Technologies’ GridMetrix® inertia measurement and analytics service across the UK, providing a real-time view of the operability of power grid stability into the control room.
National Grid ESO is the first system operator in the world to adopt inertia measurement and GridMetrix® offers a solution to measure inertia, which is becoming increasingly important as we transition to a renewable energy mix. This deal demonstrates the appetite from the sector to shift from reliance on estimation models to granular measurements informing control room, procurement and planning decisions.
In order to fulfil its 2025 zero carbon goals, National Grid ESO must embrace new technologies to keep ahead of rapid changes in the energy sector. Renewables are unable to provide system inertia to the same extent as large-scale traditional generation, with the result that transitioning to a greener energy mix inadvertently causes system stability challenges. GridMetrix® enables system operators to overcome these challenges by accurately measuring system inertia, helping to identify areas where inertia management measures are needed, thus facilitating the safe absorption of greater amounts of renewable energy into the grid.
Marc Borrett, CEO and Co-Founder at Reactive Technologies commented: “Signing this agreement is hugely important to Reactive Technologies and to the energy sector as a whole. It is testament to the quality and expertise of our team.
“Our previous collaboration with National Grid ESO successfully demonstrated the technological advantage of our GridMetrix® platform and we are now excited to deliver it as a full commercial service. This agreement will lead to the commercial deployment of an accurate inertia measurement on a nationwide scale, supporting National Grid ESO’s and the UK’s overall decarbonisation ambitions.
“System Operators globally are starting to see value in basing their operational procurement and strategic planning decisions on real-time measurements, to drive material operational benefits and better management of system risk, as the adoption of GridMetrix® has proven.”
The six-year agreement with National Grid ESO is comprised of two phases. The first will see the construction and delivery of hardware and software, while the second five-year phase will entail provision of inertia measurement services. This hardware will include one of the world’s largest ultracapacitors which will be used to ‘inject power’ into the grid, while Reactive Technologies’ proprietary measurement units directly measure the response. In shifting away from inertia estimation models to an accurate and continuous measurement system, Reactive Technologies will support the transition to the new market structures and services required to accelerate the transition to a zero-carbon grid.
As countries around the world transition to increasingly complex, renewables-focussed power systems, there is a greater need to accurately measure inertia to better optimise existing network resource and to safely integrate more renewable generation. Without an accurate view of inertia, system operators may be forced to cap renewables integration or even curtail their output in lieu of fossil fuels. Having a real-time view of inertia enables system operators to put measures in place to mitigate the risk of inertia reducing to levels at which supply is compromised.
Reactive Technologies is exploring several opportunities across a number of international markets, which are at the forefront of this transition and understand the challenges ahead.