Siemens GPM7 first software to pass National Grid ESO qualification testing for Wider Access to the electricity Balancing Mechanism: Data image

11 Dec 2019

Siemens GPM7 first software to pass National Grid ESO qualification testing for Wider Access to the electricity Balancing Mechanism

Siemens GPM7 software, which allows power generators to access the Great Britain Balancing Mechanism (BM), is the first software to pass National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO)’s qualification testing process for Wider Access to the BM market, which which came into effect on Wednesday, 11 December 2019.

GPM7 provides power generators with access to ESO systems so they can take part in providing flexible power to the grid.

Currently only large generators can access the Balancing Mechanism directly. However, from December, regulatory and practical barriers to this market will be removed so smaller decentralised generation plant in regional distribution networks will be able to sell flexibility into the grid nationally.

Wider Access can provide benefits for aggregators and smaller generation sites, such as battery storage or peaking plants, as the registration limit for individual units reduces to 1MW. It also reduces barriers to entry by simplifying the registration process for generators and energy managers into this lucrative revenue stream.

GPM7 is Siemens’ software which provides the interface and communication with National Grid ESO, telling them how much flexibility each plant currently has. Through this, the ESO can call on the power available directly. The software also allows the generator to know exactly how much flexibility they have and can monitor power delivery against targets at any given time.

Mike McDermott, Head of IT Business, Siemens Gas and Power, said: “I’m delighted Siemens is the first company to have achieved verification for the new Wider Access interface.  Siemens GPM7 provides a comprehensive and flexible solution for interacting with the UK Balancing Mechanism and is already used by a variety of organisations including energy aggregators, utilities, energy management companies and interconnector providers in the UK and Europe.

“The demand for flexible generation is set to increase, so opening up the GB Balancing Mechanism to a wider number of generators will be vital to ensure supply meets demand.  As we move to a more decentralised UK energy system, we’re making it easier for smaller, decentralised plant to access the Balancing Mechanism.” 

Richard Smith, Head of Commercial at National Grid ESO, said: “Our transformation of the electricity system to be able to operate carbon free by 2025 means we’ll have an increasingly diverse energy mix and a broader range of providers being able to access the energy market.

“Wider access to our services such as the balancing mechanism will help us deliver a secure and low-carbon energy system for the future. We’re pleased to be working with Siemens on a platform that will improve the speed and flexibility of our balancing activities, delivering value to energy consumers as a result.”

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Sara Crane

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Siemens plc

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