Demand response company Flexitricity provided emergency power this week when a 860 MW gas plant in the UK stopped generating electricity.
Flexitricity said it stepped in when the “sudden failure” occurred at Spalding Power Station in England on Monday afternoon.
“At 3.06pm, two minutes after the initial failure, National Grid requested more power from Flexitricity, and the company immediately sent further start instructions to a mixture of standby and combined heat and power generators across Britain,” Flexiticity said.
“This intervention kept the lights on and prevented any unplanned outages for energy customers. Meanwhile, National Grid arranged for other power stations to ramp up their output. At 4pm, with the grid stabilised, Flexitricity’s portfolio of sites returned to normal operation. Shortly after, Intergen announced that Spalding was once again ready to power up.”
Dr Alastair Martin, founder and chief strategy officer of Flexitricity, said: “This was a textbook case of demand response in action. Within one second, key industrial sites turned down their consumption. Shortly afterwards, different types of small generator were started. After less than an hour, the event was over and services returned to normal.”
To meet the emergency call from national Grid, Flexitricity turned down industrial consumption and mobilised both CHP generators and standby generators. “CHP generators are often needed by their local sites for other duties, but at other times they provide a cheap and clean alternative reserve service, which National Grid uses several times each week,” said Martin. “The standby generators are usually kept for power outages at each individual business, but can be used by Flexitricity in the relatively rare event of a major power station failure.
“On this occasion, National Grid needed a lot of megawatts fast, so they asked us for everything: load turndown, CHP and standby generation.”