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Piclo announces first international flexibility trial as it joins Slovenian consortium

Image: Janez Kotar.

Image: Janez Kotar.

Piclo has announced its first ever international project, teaming up with a Slovenian consortium to trial increased flexibility.

The tech start-up is joining the Slovenian Green Transformation Consortium, which was formed in 2019 to help drive the transition of the energy sector towards the country’s 2050 decarbonisation target. It will help to run flexibility trials, similar to those it has managed in the UK to investigate changes needed in the transmission system to facilitate decarbonisation.

“Slovenia is a very strategically placed country in the European electrical system, and they act as a interconnector between north and south Europe,” explained James Johnston Piclo CEO & co-founder during the Getting started with DSO flexibility markets e-conference yesterday.

“They have set some very ambitious goals for decarbonisation, so to meet these, in 2019 a consortium was established between the TSO of Slovenia, ELES, three of the large DSOs and Gen I, a leading European energy company based in Slovenia.

“We will be working together with the Slovenian Green Transformation Consortium led by ELES to establish our trials and to build on the knowledge that we have built up in the UK market and see how it can be applicable in an EU country, and what are the learnings and differences that will need to take place for it to work there.”

The project objectives are split into three elements, the first being to establish a trial that can look into visibility, coordination and development for both the TSO and DSOs using the flex platform.

Earlier in the presentation, Johnson outlined how a Piclo Flex trial usually takes place, with the company identifying constraints, publishing them, going through qualifications processes and running competitive auctions to ensure the best price for the flexibility. This is then analysed to see what learnings and developments are needed.

This is about a twelve month process, with six months spent running the trial and six spent on analysis. It will use its learnings from operations in the UK to help identify constraints and build the trial.

Secondly, it is focusing on how to stimulate flex providers to take part to ensure a liquid market. And finally, it is looking at how it can develop, and share learnings, to build further best practices in both Slovenia and the UK.

In February in the UK, Piclo secured £562,000 of funding from BEIS to support the launch of a nationwide flexibility marketplace. It is going to be trialled in collaboration with the UK’s distribution network operators, system operator National Grid ESO and more than 250 flexibility providers located up and down the country, including the likes of Anesco and Kaluza, and is one of the most significant trials in the country.

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