SSEN picks ZIV automation to help deliver a smarter energy system for its 3.8 million customers

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) following a competitive tendering process has picked ZIV automation to provide Active Network Management (ANM) solutions to deliver a smarter and flexible energy system for the customers it serves.


Active Network Management (ANM) systems link separate components of a smart grid such as smaller energy generators, renewable generation and storage devices, by implementing software to monitor and control the operation of these devices.


Connection of these technologies to the main network ensures they are fully integrated into the energy system and thus can be used in an efficient way, thereby reducing the need to invest in expensive energy network reinforcement. SSEN pioneered the development and deployment of ANM through innovation projects to develop Britain’s first smart grid on Orkney. A review of the Orkney ANM scheme identified a solution cost of £500k compared to the £30m alternative reinforcement cost.


SSEN is working with ZIV automation to implement a technology platform that can host ANM software systems across its distribution areas. SSEN is seeking to significantly expand the number of operational ANM schemes, and by investing ahead of need hopes to deliver a scalable, supportive and secure technology environment to host ANM schemes that are compatible with the energy systems of the future.


Andrew Roper, DSO Director at SSEN said: “We are excited to be working with ZIV automation on rolling out the benefits of ANM across both our distribution areas. This project will potentially reduce network costs for our customers, help us manage maintenance cost, and improve system performance.


“The UK’s electricity system is fundamentally changing, and the rollout of flexible, low-carbon technologies are bringing significant opportunities for our customers to engage in new and exciting ways. These changes are required if the UK is to meet its net-zero climate target. This project will help improve the customer journey to providing electricity to the system in the future to play an active role in the journey to net zero.”


Adrian Kearney, MD of ZIV Automation UK added: “ZIV is delighted to be working with SSEN on such a significant project. ZIV’s Enterprise ANM solution which is widely used across UK DNOs, will enable SSEN to deploy intelligent network management across their entire distribution network. The choice of platform enables SSEN to rapidly connect Distributed Energy Resources while saving significantly on infrastructure costs.


“The platform helps SSEN to optimise the management of all their network resources and supports a new range of smart grid services, which will assist SSEN to increase network efficiencies and improve supply and facilitate the transition from DNO to DSO.


“We believe that there is great synergy between both companies to deliver proven innovative solutions that improve the network operation.”


The project has now commenced and is due to be concluded by April 2020. A phased implementation rollout is expected. Alongside this partnership, SSEN will continue to work with other vendors on the transition to a smarter, flexible electricity network.