Nov 2016
Gas Distribution
Flexible Energy Model
Nov 2016
Feb 2017
Wales and West Utilities
Chris Clarke – Director of Asset Management, Safety & Environment
Click here to send a question to the contact.
Network Innovation Allowance
Gas Distribution Networks
The revised model will be constructed in Microsoft Excel to allow for future flexibility and modifications. Specific tasks include:

  • Re-structure the model to make it simpler and more flexible. The core calculation components where suitable will be taken from the existing model and incorporated into a new more streamlined and robust version. All areas of manual intervention in the running of the model (for example copying data from one place to another) will be removed with automated actions wherever possible. Errors identified in the review will be corrected or overwritten in new code.
  • Interface. A simple interface will be created which collate all the inputs and operations required by a user, so that the operation is much simpler and reliable. This will all be Excel based and make use of standard Excel functionality (colours, drop down boxes, etc). The principle throughput will be that any user input will only be required once, and fed throughout the model.
  • Outputs. An outputs section will be created which collates and presents all the key outputs clearly for the scenario set up and run in the model. We propose that the model will run two scenarios at once – the baseline, and one other user-defined.
  • Documentation. Where necessary, simple user instructions will be included to guide the user through the model, and understand the range of inputs and outputs.
  • Scenarios. The model will be set-up so that a number of scenarios can be defined, and simply selected using a single scenario drop down list. This allows for quick comparison of different scenarios (for example, different energy supply mixes)
  • Functionality. Some basic functionality will be added:
    • Efficiency improvements on the baseline profile. This will allow the baseline profile to be adjusted to allow simulation of efficiency improvements. We propose this uses monthly adjustment factors to allow for the difference between heat and hot water improvements.
    • Baseline efficiency inclusion. This will include the impact of baseline heating efficiency in the demand calculations.
    • Alternative technology assumptions. This will include the ability to allow a proportion of the load to be met by alternative technologies (such as heat pumps) to provide demand side efficiency savings.
    • Testing. A series of tests will be run (including comparison of different scenarios with the existing model and results) to ensure that errors are minimised.
    • Training. An afternoon training session with representatives of WWU.

The objective will be to provide a simple, user-friendly, and flexible energy model which can be used by our employees and other bodies to allow assessment of energy demands across a specific area on an hourly basis. This should be capable of modelling a set of realistic energy load and energy supply profiles to examine the coincidence between these, to estimate energy storage requirements.  Key outputs will be in the form of customer energy costs to understand the impact that different energy supply scenarios will have on customer energy bills. 

The following success criteria are proposed:
  • The model should replicate the outputs of the existing (when final corrections are made) modelling and reporting.
  • The model should be easily understood and capable of use by our employees following guidance and training by Delta Energy & Environment.
  • The model should provide sufficiency functionality to allow a range of energy load and supply profiles to be met.
  • The model should be simply structured to allow future upgrades to be made by WWU and others.