Fundamentals powers Northern Powergrid’s carbon reducing BEET-Box

Fundamentals powers Northern Powergrid’s carbon reducing BEET-Box

Fundamentals, a leader in electrical grid technology, today announces it has designed the ‘BEET-Box’ in conjunction with Northern Powergrid at the heart of the electricity distributor’s smart meter data-led technology trial to optimise voltage and reduce carbon emissions.

The Boston Spa Energy Efficiency Trial (BEET) will kick off in August 2022 in Boston Spa, Wetherby, and the surrounding areas in Yorkshire. Northern Powergrid will harness data from local smart meters and run it through the BEET-Box – designed by FUNDAMENTALS in conjunction with Northern Powergrid – to safely optimise the network voltage. The bold trial will see real-time data-led technology being used to lower energy bills of around 15,000 local customers and reduce the carbon emissions of every single home and business in the trial area.

Northern Powergrid is planning the local trial ahead of a regional roll-out across its network. Long-term, a national roll-out of the technology could trim £500m from customers’ energy bills every year and a potential 200,000 to two million tonnes of CO2 from the UK’s annual carbon footprint. 

The BEET-Box will apply an algorithm to local smart meter data every 30 minutes, to determine the most efficient voltage to supply on the network at that given moment. The resulting energy efficiency improvements will all happen ‘behind the meter’ in customers’ homes and businesses – and customers won’t have to do a thing. Even customers without smart meters will feel the benefits of BEET, as the voltage optimisation is applied across the network, not to individual properties.

Iain Miller, Head of Innovation at Northern Powergrid, said: “BEET represents a revolutionary application of a well-understood technique that could help to deliver huge capacity savings on parts of our network, while saving our customers energy and money. Innovations such as this are a key enabler of our plans through to 2028. We’re excited to see our smart technology deliver real benefits to our customers and help free up more capacity to decarbonise our region.”  

Jon Hiscock, CEO of FUNDAMENTALS comments: “The BEET-BOX is a great example of smart technology in action – it reduces energy consumption by improving efficiency of customers’ appliances. The data gleaned from the trial will provide powerful insights into how to further enhance our big data and machine learning technologies for the future, and crucially households’ carbon emissions.”

The BEET-Box has been developed by Northern Powergrid in conjunction with Fundamentals, Siemens, GE Digital, and the University of Sheffield.

On completion of successful trials, Northern Powergrid plans to roll out its BEET-Box technology across its region, with up to 80 per cent of its 3.9 million customers benefitting by 2033. The network operator will also share the learnings and technology with fellow electricity network operators to potentially deliver benefits at a national level. Nationwide, voltage optimisation could save £0.5bn from consumer energy bills and cut between 200,000 and two million tonnes of CO2 annually – the equivalent of removing up to 200,000 cars from the road.