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Government unveils cutting-edge energy tech demonstrator projects

Image: Getty.

Image: Getty.

The government has thrown its weight behind four cutting edge technology demonstrator projects which will “jump start the energy revolution”.

Energy minister Claire Perry this morning unveiled the projects, which will be supported by more than £100 million of Industrial Strategy funding, professing that they would “spark a transformation” in the way consumers interact with energy.

The four projects are:

  • The Energy Superhub, Oxford, led by Pivot Power,
  • ReFLEX Orkney, Orkney, led by European Marine Energy Centre,
  • Project Leo (Local Energy Oxfordshire), led by Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks, and;
  • Smart Hub SLES, West Sussex, led by Cloud Infinity Projects

The Energy Superhub in Oxford will incorporate what is claimed to be the world’s first transmission-connected hybrid battery system using lithium-ion batteries alongside redox flow machines supplied by redT. In addition a network of 320 ground source heat pumps will be installed, while AI-powered software will be adopted to forecast energy demand and supply.

More information on the Energy Superhub can be read on Current± here.

ReFLEX Orkney is to establish a “first of its kind” virtual energy system on the isle, combining local power transport and heat networks into an overarching system that can be controlled centrally. Peer-to-peer energy trading networks will be introduced alongside storage and electric vehicle-related technologies.

More information on the ReFLEX Orkney can be read on Current± here.

Meanwhile, the SSEN-led Project Leo will establish a local energy marketplace in Oxford, enabling virtual aggregation of loads and the dispatch of flexibility on the Oxfordshire distribution grid.

Lastly, the SLES Smart Hub will work on the integration of energy management technologies across council housing, private residential properties, commercial properties and transport infrastructure throughout West Sussex.

Launching the projects, Perry said that they were emblematic of “tomorrow’s world, today”.

“We are at the start of a green revolution as we move to more digital, data-driven smart systems that will bring us cleaner and cheaper energy. These projects, backed by government funding, are set to spark a transformation and change the way we interact with energy for the better as part of our modern Industrial Strategy,” she said.

UK Research and Innovation is supporting the demonstrators and Rob Saunders, deputy challenge director at the government body, said they represented an opportunity to show “how innovation can deliver this energy ambition for the future”.


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