Tollgrade Communications, Inc. has been selected to provide its LightHouse distribution monitoring platform with Medium Voltage Smart Grid Sensors to Scottish Power Energy Network for SPEN’s Accelerating Renewables Connection project.
The ARC project is a real-time operating and control project that uses minute-by-minute network information provided by technologies such as Tollgrade’s LightHouse MV Sensors. The sensors allow electricity supply to be matched with demand, allowing the network to operate as efficiently as possible for both energy producers and consumers.
This new initiative will help connect renewable energy generation to the distribution power network earlier, while reducing connection costs. While those seeking to connect renewables to the grid will see immediate benefits, ARC is also intended to help meet the UK and Scottish Governments’ targets for increasing the amount of energy from low carbon sources.
“ARC seeks to help community groups connect their own renewable energy to the distribution grid,” said Martin Wright, Lead Engineer Future Networks SPEN. “What we like about Tollgrade LightHouse Sensors is that they can be installed anywhere on our distribution network. The sensors are extremely easy to install at known impact and constraint points or moved around to monitor impact on the network more generally. This is allowing us to connect more local energy producers to the grid.”
The ARC project concludes its four-year trial in December 2016 in the East Lothian and Borders region of SPEN’s electricity distribution network, connecting 2,700 square kilometers – stretching from North Berwick down to Holy Island and inland as far as Hawick and Galashiels.
Tollgrade LightHouse MV Smart Grid Sensors can be easily installed anywhere on SPEN’s distribution network and will be used to measure load at various points to better understand the impact of adding renewable generation. With the real-time load information from Tollgrade MV Sensors communicating back to the accompanying LightHouse Sensor Management System (SMS) software, SPEN will be better able to work with community groups to match locally produced energy with demand and take other additional factors into consideration such as network constraints