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E.ON smart networks system to enable clean tech installation at new housing developments

The full development at Maidenhill includes 800 homes, with 77 to be built for the E.ON pilot project. Image: E.ON.

The full development at Maidenhill includes 800 homes, with 77 to be built for the E.ON pilot project. Image: E.ON.

Electricity use is to be smartly managed across new housing developments - allowing them to include technology such as solar, heat pumps and electric vehicle (EV) chargers - as a result of a new solution from E.ON.

This solution is a live, locally controlled system, which balances the electricity supply and demand on the local network, maximising the sharing and availability of on-site renewable generation such as rooftop PV.

This then ensures any energy that is generated but not used in a home is available to the local network and can be used elsewhere on the development, reducing demand for power from the national grid.

It will allow clean technologies to be installed on the developments where there otherwise wouldn't be sufficient network capacity.

This is particularly important, as E.ON detailed how with the government’s ambition of creating 300,000 new homes a year in the mid-2020s, each new development may need to carry the extra cost of grid reinforcement to make sure technologies such as solar panels, heat pumps and EV chargers can play a role without overloading existing power networks.

Indeed, new regulations require all new homes and buildings such as workplaces and supermarkets to install EV chargers from this year, with the government stating that this will result in up to 145,000 extra chargepoints installed across England in the run up to 2030.

A pilot project with Cala Homes, Energy Assets and SP Energy Networks is to see 77 homes built at Maidenhill, near Glasgow. These homes are to meet new sustainable heating regulations, E.ON said, and would otherwise have required £5.5 million of grid upgrades.

Chris Lovatt, chief operating officer for energy infrastructure services at E.ON, said: New homes can lead the way in decarbonising heating, transport and wider energy use, but we have to make sure networks are future-proofed so customers can get maximum advantage – whether that’s being able to share the energy they generate locally, exporting it to the grid, or just having the most sustainable home they can in a more affordable way."

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