Orkney set to become a ‘smart energy island’

Posted on 02 May 2019 and read 1503 times
Orkney set to  become a ‘smart energy island’The first phase of a new £28.5 million project to create a Virtual Energy System (VES) in Orkney has been launched — to digitally link distributed and intermittent renewable generation to flexible demand.

The ReFLEX (Responsive Flexibility) Orkney project will be a ‘world first’ VES linking local electricity, transport and heat networks into one all-encompassing system.

The project — funded by UKRI through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund — aims to create a ‘smart energy island’ and demonstrate the energy system of the future, with the goal of eliminating the need for fossil fuels.

Energy and Clean Growth Minister Claire Perry said: “What we are seeing here on Orkney is a test-bed for the energy system of the future.

“These smart systems will provide cheaper, greener and more-flexible access to energy for everyone.

What we learn from these innovations could one day be rolled out across the UK and exported around the world, and we’ll be able to say it was ‘Made in Orkney’.”

Led by the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC), the project involves a consortium of Orkney-based partners — Solo Energy, Aquatera, Community Energy Scotland, Heriot-Watt University and Orkney Islands Council — as well as multi-national energy company Doosan Babcock.

At the heart of the project is the demonstration of flexible energy-balancing technologies.

The project aims to deploy: up to 500 domestic batteries; up to 100 business and large-scale batteries; up to 200 Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) chargers; up to 600 new electric vehicles; an island community-powered electric bus and e-bike integrated transport system; up to 100 flexible heating systems; and a Doosan industrial-scale hydrogen fuel cell.

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