Project Artemis, a collaboration between South Korean aggregator Gridwiz and British energy technology firm Electron, has announced the successful demonstration of a flexibility trading platform in South Korea’s Peak Response market.

The Peak Response Secondary Market (PRSM) Platform unlocks value for providers of Demand Response, by allowing them to optimise their contract obligations near real-time. Allowing trading to happen close to dispatch is a crucial enabler for grids operating with high levels of variable renewable energy.

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Decarbonisation

The project additionally sought to illustrate the value of a flexible electricity system for countries seeking to use more intermittent renewable energy.

Flexibility is a mainstay of how the UK intends to decarbonise its electricity grid at least cost. Modelling by Imperial College showed that the potential savings to South Korea from flexibility increase as the country pursues more stringent carbon targets. Their results suggested that South Korea could save KRW1.1tn/yr ($0.95bn/yr), by implementing a more flexible system now. This figure increases to KRW2.7tn/yr ($2.3bn/yr) in 2030 were carbon intensity limited to 100g CO2/kWh.

Gridwiz entered the project looking for a market-based approach to the flexibility that might help its customers ensure delivery of Demand Response. The trial involved six industrial companies, such as casting producer Daedong Metals, Hanwha Total Petrochemical and car component manufacturer Castec Korea, that contracts with Gridwiz to reduce their energy demand when congestion results in a ‘stress event’ for the Korean electricity grid.

Through the Electron platform, the assets which found themselves unable to deliver as contracted were able to avoid punitive penalties by trading with those who had surplus capacity. These assets, in turn, were able to earn extra revenue from the four completed trades.

Without the marketplace, this 2,000kWh of demand response capacity would not have delivered. Gridwiz and Electron collaborated in the design of the market, in which Gridwiz acted as the market operator.

The trial built on Electron’s earlier Project Helios, which explored flexibility trading in the UK, to test how the model could be applied to other market structures.

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Jo-Jo Hubbard, Electron chief executive, said: “Project Artemis proves the value flexibility providers place in being able to refine their trading position near real-time. This market layer can be incorporated in any geography that requires new tools to manage grid volatility as a result of decarbonisation.”

Junewoo Ryu, Gridwiz vice-president, emphasised the significance of the project. He said: “We believe that the Project Artemis has demonstrated the value of Demand Response as a flexibility resource. We hope this project can be used as evidence to support the policy goal of increased flexibility to complement the recent surge of renewable energy capacity in Korea.”

Electron’s innovative platform consists of a blockchain-based asset register, which governs access to confidential asset data, connected to multiple ‘off-chain’ trading engines which can be securely operated by third-party market and service operators. The Peak Response platform is one of these markets. The decentralised nature of the data source means that the market can potentially be extended to other South Korean aggregators in a way that would allow Gridwiz customers to trade with 3rd parties.

The project was jointly funded by The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) and the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning.

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