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SSEN lauds successful live flexibility trading trial via new Neutral Market Facilitator platform

The Neutral Market Facilitator platform was developed to enable a transparent marketplace. Image: SSEN.

The Neutral Market Facilitator platform was developed to enable a transparent marketplace. Image: SSEN.

Two SSEN projects, TRANSITION and Project LEO, have successfully run a live trial of flexibility trading on a new Neutral Market Facilitator platform.

The platform was developed by Opus One Solutions for the TRANSITION trial to enable a transparent marketplace that can provide access for all flexibility providers to trade flexibility.

It links to other technologies that have been created by the project, including the Whole System Coordinator, Power System Analysis and Forecasting tools.

As well as enabling the end-to-end process of trading flexibility services between the distribution system operator (DSO) and flexibility providers, it will also facilitate peer-to-peer import and export capacity trading, maintaining the visibility of peer-to-peer trading activity on the network.

Following the successful testing of the Neutral Market Facilitator in the current trial period, which is due to end next month, the second and third trial periods will incorporate new functions and test different services, including the peer-to-peer trading.

The TRANSITION and Project LEO teams are also intending to test the platform with a wide range of assets and users, and are looking to hear from organisations in Oxfordshire, including aggregators, that may be able to provide flexibility services.

Project LEO, which is examining how new competitive markets can be developed for low-carbon technologies, was granted a nine-month extension by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) last June as it looked to begin its flexibility market trials.

SSEN also trialed a Near Real-time Data Access tool in Oxfordshire as part of Project LEO, with the tool identifying areas where flexibility could be used to support the uptake of low carbon technologies such as electric vehicles or heat pumps, or where network reinforcement will be needed.

Meanwhile, TRANSITION was created to demonstrate the functionality of DSO architecture, running concurrently with Project LEO.

Brian Wann, TRANSITION project manager for SSEN said: “The UK government has set the ambitious target of a decarbonised electricity system by 2035 which, coupled with the increasing take-up of low carbon technologies such as electric vehicles and heat pumps, will contribute to a doubling of electricity demand by the same date.

"Use of flexibility trading through a Neutral Market Facilitator will be crucial to support delivery of these targets in a cost-effective manner.”

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