Western Power Distribution
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Network Innovation Allowance
ED - New technologies and commercial evolution
Demand Response and Demand Side Management
When a new generation connection is requested at a constrained site, current practice is to either reinforce the network or offer the generator alternative network connection arrangements. Novel techniques for reducing constraint issues have been explored by WPD, including the use of batteries to shift load and the use of active network management technologies. However, to date, these practices have not extended to hydrogen and fuel cells.
The primary aim of this project is to research the use of hydrogen electrolysers as a controllable load. In areas with large penetrations of renewable generation, controllable load will increase the capacity for further generation connections.
WPD has developed an outline proposal for a “Heat and Fleet” demonstration project which would explore the use of electrolysers to generate hydrogen from excess local renewable electricity. This concept could result in less curtailment of renewable resources, and provide a highly controllable demand allowing energy storage in the form of hydrogen gas. As a demonstrator, it would provide insight into both cross-vector and cross-sector opportunities covering the electricity and gas networks, heat, and transportation and as suggested by the project name, there are two potential end uses for hydrogen:
· Heating: Use in a fuel cell for heating a building, combined with electricity output.
· Transport: Use in hydrogen vehicles (either internal combustion or fuel cell).