Dynamic Demand: can smart appliances help stabilise the power grid?


Joe Short, Director of Dynamic Demand Ron Bailey, Association for the Conservation of Energy

Many electrical appliances, such as the humble domestic fridge, have the potential to provide significant stability and peak demand management for the electricity network. All that is needed is a simple controller that responds to the National Grid's '50 Hertz' system frequency which drifts slightly whenever the grid is overloaded. This technology, known as dynamic demand control, could lead to significant carbon dioxide savings by reducing the need for certain back-up generation. And it may help facilitate the connection of greater amounts of variable renewable energy generation such as wind power.

Now is the right time to learn about this new area of engineering because dynamic demand control is due to be debated in Parliament on November 11th as part of a suite of measures to reduce carbon emissions. Joe Short, director of Dynamic Demand, a not-for-profit group of engineers promoting the technology, will present the current evidence for how effective this technology could be if introduced widely in the UK. Ron Bailey, from the Association for the Conservation of Energy, will provide the Parliamentary context by giving an introduction to the various energy policy proposals now before Parliament, and what now has to be done to make them real.