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Technologies to Solve the Energy Trilemma – Powerstar at EMEX


EMEX, The Net Zero and Energy Management Expo, takes place today (Wednesday) and tomorrow at the ExCel, London. The event showcases the ways that organisations can deliver on a low carbon, energy efficient and sustainable future, featuring visitors and speakers from across the energy and sustainability industries.

Amongst those speakers is Powerstar Senior Business Development Manager Andrew Donald, who will be speaking in the Energy Future & Flexibility Networks Theatre at 12:00. His talk will cover the how the UK energy system is changing, including a rising risk of power disruption as aging transmission and distribution networks struggle to cope with a dramatic increase in distributed generation, coupled with the inflexible nature of wind and solar generation.

Choosing the right technology is a key part of balancing the growing energy trilemma of cost-effectiveness, sustainability and reliability. During his presentation, Andrew will highlight the role that technology can play in the energy transition, including insulating organisations from volatile energy costs, bolstering sustainability by supporting net zero carbon efforts and protecting operations from power disruption. While these technologies will likely be familiar to many, real-world case studies and examples will highlight the impact that these technologies are having on the bottom line and productivity of businesses.

One area where significant improvements can be unlocked is with low-loss transformers. The UK’s transformer fleet is aging, with many exceeding their intended working lifespan. This means that many transformers are far less efficient than they could be, and older transformers represent a growing threat to a site’s power resilience. Replacing old transformers with a modern, amorphous core transformers can reduce losses by as much as 80%.

Voltage optimisation helps to stabilise and reduce incoming voltage to a site, reducing energy consumption as well as protecting sensitive equipment from the damage that can be caused by overvoltage. While National Grid officially supplies voltage at 230V, to ensure that it does not drop below permitted levels, most sites are actually supplied with an overvoltage, with the average being 248V. This is much higher than the 220V that most equipment is designed to run optimally at, representing a dramatic increase in wasted energy. Voltage optimisation helps to eliminate that waste, as well as protecting equipment from minor spikes or sags in incoming voltage. Typically, a 1.5V reduction in incoming voltage translates to a 1% reduction in a site’s overall energy consumption, as well as CO2 emissions and energy costs.

Battery energy storage represents the most flexible and intelligent technology in terms of managing energy flows on a site and ensuring optimal performance from other energy infrastructure. An on-site battery energy storage system offers a host of energy management options, including maximising on-site generation by storing excess power, as well as buffering peak loads such as rapid EV charging to prevent a site exceeding its agreed supply capacity. Energy can be purchased during low-demand times and stored for use during periods of peak demand, and batteries can also unlock new revenue streams by engaging with grid service contracts. Increasingly, battery storage also offers a more sustainable, more efficient emergency power option compared to traditional UPS, protecting productivity and profitability in the event of a brief power disruption.

Find out about Powerstar’s other upcoming events here


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