Apr 2019
Electricity Transmission
Black Start from Distributed Energy Resources
Apr 2019
Apr 2022
National Grid Electricity System Operator and SP Energy Networks
Pete Chandler
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Network Innovation Competition
ET - Network improvements and system operability and ET - New technologies and commercial evolution
Distributed Generation, Resilience and System Security
Black Start is currently a transmission-led approach of starting large generators and energising a skeleton transmission network.

Our electricity system is undergoing a revolution driven by decarbonisation and decentralisation, and Black Start services need to evolve accordingly.

The key problem that Distributed ReStart aims to resolve is how to bring the organisational coordination, the commercial and regulatory frameworks, and the power engineering solutions together to achieve Black Start from DER.

Distributed ReStart explores how Distributed Energy Resources (DER) in Great Britain can be used to restore power in the highly unlikely event of a total or partial blackout of the National Electricity Transmission System.

Examples of distributed energy resources (DER) include:
  • natural gas turbines
  • biomass generators
  • embedded hydro-power stations
  • wind turbines
  • solar panels.
The project is a three-year programme (Jan 2019 – Mar 2022) that will develop and demonstrate new approaches to enabling Black Start services from Distributed Energy Resources (DER).

Case studies on the SP Distribution (SPD) and SP Manweb (SPM) networks will be used to explore options and then design and test solutions through a combination of:
  • detailed off-line analysis
  • stakeholder engagement and industry consultation
  • desktop exercises
  • real-life trials of the re-energisation process.
Our analysis shows the Distributed ReStart project can deliver 0.81MT CO2 reduction (cumulative) by 2050.

The NPV of the project is expected to be £115m by 2050 due to increased competition and reduced costs associated with large generator readiness.

This would be passed on to consumers through reduced BSUoS. This ground-breaking approach would be the first of its kind in the world, creating the blueprint for international adoption.