Delivering Network Visibility

Making real time electricity network data from across Cheshire publicly available to enable our net zero journey.

170,550 t
Est. annual reduction in carbon
emissions (tonnes CO2 eq)

53
Est. number of people
who benefit directly

Our story

by EA Technology

Our mission is “to promote the development of resilient, accessible, low-cost energy networks globally, accelerating the transition to energy decarbonisation”. It’s in our DNA and we are passionate about it!

We educate and facilitate the introduction of low carbon technologies. We work collaboratively with regulators, organisations and partners to manage the effects of climate change. We make it our business to deliver innovative solutions to operators of power networks globally. We help accelerate progress towards clean growth, adaptation and resilience of energy networks.

As we continue on our transition to Net Zero, data, particularly from the low voltage network is a key enabler. This data is crucial to decisions about the optimum locations to site renewable generation, Electric Vehicle (EV) chargers and battery storage as well as other network connection requests.

In partnership with SP Energy Networks, the distribution network operator responsible for the local area, this project has installed our VisNet® Hub technology in 673 substations across Cheshire’s Energy Innovation District. We believe that this initiative will make the area the most monitored Low Voltage electricity network in the world.

These VisNet® Hub platforms, devices or stations will provide near real-time data from monitored substations. The data provided can be real-time or historical for all or just some of the monitored substations. As well as load, it includes most other useful parameters.

Whether you are a planner, developer, community organisation, academic or interested in electricity networks, we think this data will be of interest. It may be of particular interest to:

• Energy generation and storage investors interested in identifying capacity constraints to inform location selections;
• Energy consumers researching opportunities for demand side measures, e.g. reduced EV charging, deferred space heating, management of battery storage solutions;
• Traders creating local energy markets for trading variable loads with variable generation within the sub-region;
• EV Chargepoint installers and operators wanting to locate new sites.

Our advice

Delivering Network Visibility is making Low Voltage electricity network data available to anyone who may be interested.

This is the first time that real time network data has been made publicly available. The Delivering Network Visibility project is measuring the number of visitors to our website that is making network data from across Cheshire available. To access more detailed data we are requesting that visitors log into the website.

Over the next several years, we expect that the data made available will assist stakeholders (Local Authorities, Companies, Low Carbon Generators, EV Charging Point Providers), in the installation and commissioning of further low carbon technologies in the region.

The main challenge about this project has been to communicate it clearly and articulate why the data is of interest. Decarbonisation necessitates greater electrification, and a move away from fossil fuels. To achieve this by 2050 it requires increased efficiency and making the best use of existing capacity on the electricity network before reinforcement (upgrading) is required. The network data that this project is making available could help:

• Energy generation and storage investors interested in identifying capacity constraints to inform location selections;
• Energy consumers researching opportunities for demand side measures, e.g. reduced EV charging, deferred space heating, management of battery storage solutions;
• Traders creating local energy markets for trading variable loads with variable generation within the sub-region, and
• EV chargepoint installers and operators wanting to locate new sites.

But we also want to generate interest in the electricity system. We have tried to make the data easily understandable and to explain why some of the load curves from some substations differ from others depending on the customers it serves.

Our metrics

  • Measuring the number of visitors to our website.
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e VisNet® Hub is a Low Voltage monitor providing network visibility.
An example of the data provided by the project