Resilient Future Urban Energy Systems Capable of Surviving in Extreme Events (RESCUE)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Strathclyde
Department Name: Electronic and Electrical Engineering

Abstract

The target of operating the GB system with net-zero carbon by 2025, alongside China's ambitious renewable of 35% of energy from renewable sources by 2030, are extremely challenging. From the recent UK power cut event (2019) , several other non-high profile (but still concerning) events that are known to the UK investigators, and the wide-scale blackouts caused by Typhoon Lekima in China, it is clear that new capabilities to manage extreme events and to maximise system resilience are needed urgently. Existing protection and control methods and practices have limitations, and presently islanded or city-centric operational modes are not permitted. The ambition of the project is to enable future urban energy systems, in island or multiple-island mode, with the capability of surviving in extreme conditions purely using local energy and storage resources without compromising system resilience or security of supply.

The novelty of the project is in measurement and enhancement of resilience at an urban scale, and in fundamentally inverting operation, protection and control philosophies to enable migration from systems relying on centralised power stations and a national transmission system, to being capable of surviving purely with local sustainable sources, functioning in a proactive and co-ordinated approach. Key outputs of the project will be methods to audit, model and measure resilience of cities, and methods to determine and evaluate "threat levels" for future urban energy systems and their operation. Additionally, the project will develop control and protection strategies for operation in extreme conditions in islanded/sub-islanded modes, as well as develop enhanced restoration methods.

Planned Impact

The project aims to develop an understanding of the novel schemes, data processes and methodologies which could enable coordination of multi-vector (power, heat and transport) resources to sustain the power system operation during extreme conditions. The scoped research activities are of immediate interest to a wide range of stakeholders, e.g. utility companies, technology suppliers, policy makers, and local authorities.
An advisory committee consisting of experts from utilities, standardisation bodies, policy makers, manufacturers and academics from both China and UK will be created. The advisory committee will provide technical expertise to advise the project direction and provide constructive feedback during the execution of the project plans. Meetings will take place once a year, and occur before project and management meetings so that feedback can be taken into account when assessing next quarter project plans. Furthermore, the committee members, who are all key stakeholders of the project, will also act as the key routes for identifying opportunities, potential new partners and users for implementing the learnings generated from the project. It is anticipated that a key result from the project will be a realistic roadmap for implementing the solutions as developed from the project.
The following list provides proposed member organisations for the independent advisory group. However, these members are subject to funder's approval upon notification of award: GE grid solutions, Ofgem, Energy Systems Catapult, Glasgow City Council, Manchester City Council, ENA, UK100 and China Electric Power Research Institute and China State grid.
A formal project website will be created once the project is funded, where the project objective, key activities, progressive outcomes and suitable data will be openly shared.The website will be connected with a dedicated social media feed to maximise project exposure and impact, and keep PI's of other successfully funded projects up to date to ensure opportunities for collaboration are maximised. It is also planned that newsletters from the project will be issued every three months and the stakeholders will be able to subscribe the newsletter from the website.
Significant efforts will be made by the consortium to publish the project outcomes in top international conferences and journals on electrical energy systems. Some targeted conferences are: IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting (annually), CIGRE Paris Sessions (bi-annually), IET conference on Developments in Power System Protection (bi-annually). To maximise the impact, the consortium is also planning to apply to these conferences to host two exclusively focussed workshops during the project period.
The project will hold two wider engagement events, so that stakeholders could have a direct interaction with the team and first-hand knowledge of the project activities and outcomes. A kick-off event and final impact event will be held in the UK to disseminate the objectives, activities and the outcomes of the project. Similar arrangements will also be made at China side, and Chinese project stakeholders will be expected to attend the UK event. Invitations to the wider engagement events will be extended beyond the project partners and will include all UK DNOs, Independent DNOs, multi-vector technology suppliers, BEIS, Energy Systems Catapult, Ofgem, platform/energy management providers and UK100 to represent local government future energy needs. In addition to external project collaborators, the PI's of other successfully funded projects will be expected to attend these events. In return, the consortium has budgeted for a £15k flexible fund (£5k per year) which will be utilised to engage with the other successfully funded projects as we have proposed them to engage with our programme of work.
Additional to this, annual dissemination events will take place via PNDC with core members such as SPEN, SSEN, UKPN, CISCO and Vodafone.

Publications

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