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Article Date: 7th September 2017

ABB Power Grids - Solving Great Britain’s Growing Spinning Reserve Challenge

Spinning Reserve - Renewable Energy - Electricity Generation - Power Quality

ABB Power Grids - Wind Farm

Great Britain is fully embracing renewable energy, with renewable energy resources responsible for some 25 percent of electricity generation. Although this is great for the environment, it is causing a challenge for transmission network operators (TSO’s) due to the loss of spinning reserve from traditional large-scale fossil-fuel and nuclear plants.

Spinning reserve is unused generating capacity, connected to the grid and available at any moment, meaning that it can meet a sudden change in demand. Also known as ‘inertia’, it keeps the grid tightly controlled and prevents outages or blackouts.

Renewable energy lacks this inertia, challenging grid stability. In response to this ABB joined forces with Scottish Power Energy Networks, National Grid, the University of Strathclyde and the Technical University of Denmark. Together, they made a successful application in the Electricity Network Innovation Competition (NIC) organised by Ofgem and won funding for the Phonenix project to create the world’s first Hybrid Synchronous Compensator (H-SC).

To find out more about how the H-SC will be enhancing system stability and security, whilst maintaining power quality to minimise the risks of blackouts, please click here to read the latest edition of FFWD, ABB’s customer newsletter.

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