Energy Networks Association – Future Worlds: consultation response

Published: 4 October 2018

Energy Systems Catapult has responded to the Energy Networks Association’s (ENA) Future Worlds consultation, which is one of the key deliverables from the Open Networks initiative.

‘Future Worlds’ is the output of a substantial stakeholder engagement process to map and describe a number of potential future electricity networks (“Future Worlds”) capable of supporting the smart decentralised energy industry that the UK is transitioning towards.

At this stage, the ENA do not seek to recommend any particular Future World but instead to understand them, creating a common view of how each works allowing informed debate and decisions to follow.

Key points

  • Energy Systems Catapult welcomes the ENA Open Networks initiative. Understanding the potential of new technology and services to improve the outcomes for consumers and society is an essential area of focus for networks.
  • We believe some of the tools and capabilities that the Catapult has developed could be helpful in informing Future Worlds analysis. We would be willing to explore further collaboration.
  • The Catapult has made suggestions in this response where the analysis may be broadened for it to be genuinely ‘whole systems’ in scope. We also believe that some additional Future World options could usefully be considered.
  • There is an opportunity to use formal, systems engineering approaches to facilitate a smooth requirements capture, analysis and implementation process, with change management techniques speeding up complex interactions.
  • SGAM is a useful presentation method but focused on electricity only, so may need to be supplemented to enable full consideration of multi-vector dimensions. We have scrutinised SGAM as an approach in our previous work.