By analysing the demand on our network today, we can plan for tomorrow and identify the future upgrades we need to make, upgrades that are key to enabling the increased demands that accompany the rising use of Low Carbon Technologies (LCT) such as electric vehicles (EV) and heat pumps.

In yesterday's article we learned how our Data and Analytics team analyses figures from a variety of measuring devices on our network, and these results can help them:

  • Look ahead and identify areas of future network congestion as far ahead as 2050
  • Target the network investment plans within RIIO-ED2 driven by the forecasted growth in LCT, as well as the impacts they will bring
  • Identify specific areas of the network for immediate investment under the Green Recovery Programme
  • The Machine Learning Network Load Model can reduce the need to deploy physical Low Voltage monitoring devices across the network
  • Continually maintain an updated view of all forecasts ahead of time, ensuring our investment plans are consistently reviewed as things change.

Network analytics are providing our teams with a deeper insight into our current infrastructure and forecast future performance, and data of a different kind can also help us better understand the customers served by our network, as well as the external factors in which our networks operate.

External factors include:

  • Fuel poverty
  • House type (age, council, private, size)
  • Current energy performance ratings
  • Household consumption
  • Modelled loading profiles scenarios
  • Geological data to understand the impact of climate change to the environment

By combining detailed network, asset and energy data with broader data reports about the areas in which we operate, we are able to better understand the complex socio-economic factors influencing our customers, how they want to use our networks and to help us better meet their needs.

In the future this could allow us to start modelling potential CO2 savings realised as a result ofinitiatives as we accelerate to net zero.

Tomorrow, in the third and final look at the figures behind our future, we'll be learning about how asset-mapping is helping us deliver on our Sustainability Strategy.