Deploying innovative technologies for active demand management and greener substation design
CLP Power Hong Kong Limited (CLP Power) has effectively managed peak demand and integrated sustainable concepts in substation design whilst continuing to supply its customers with world-class reliability.
The continuous development of Hong Kong and the wider adoption of electric vehicles (EV) call for increasing electricity demand. This steady rise in peak demand has brought substantial challenges to electricity service provider CLP Power. On the system-wide level, peak demands stress generation capacity. On the local level, it becomes challenging for the company to manage the growing distribution demands whilst upholding power quality standards.
Enhancing demand management with smart grid technology
Traditionally, the rising peak demand and distribution grid congestion may be addressed by reinforcement, such as additional power plants and substations. These measures, however, involve investment. Limited land resources in Hong Kong may also further restrict new network reinforcement. Reinforcement for the peak load, which occurs a few times per year, is also inefficient because of low asset utilisation.
To better manage the growing electricity demands, CLP Power’s Demand Response (DR) provides a cost-effective and easily scalable solution compared to conventional reinforcement. The company has successfully utilised the flexibility of customer loads for system-wide and localised demand reduction over the years. A two-stage project approach features customer-specific DR programmes and a dynamic Distributed Energy Resource Management System (DERMS).
Specific and innovative DR programmes for different customer groups have been developed during the first stage of the project. During the summer of 2022, CLP Power engaged 600,000 residential households as well as industrial and commercial customers with smart metres to utilise over 130 MW of load flexibility through the programme. It furthermore developed Localised Demand Response, which identifies an area with potential network constraints and addresses a targeted group of residential customers within the area to provide demand flexibility.
In the second stage, CLP Power upgrades the DR programmes towards an intelligent, effective, and automated system. With the support of cutting-edge digital technology, the cloud-based DERMS is able to monitor and predict network constraints with an AI-supported forecasting function. Once the potential overloading is identified, the DERMS will determine the most suitable solution according to the price and location of flexibility resources and activate them automatically.
“The developed DR system enables CLP Power to achieve better operational efficiency and system reliability. Through integrating customer resources into active power network management, we can effectively manage peak demand whilst continuing to supply our customers with world-class reliability,” said Eric Cheung, CLP Power's Senior Director of Power Systems.
CLP Power has demonstrated the possibility of customer engagement and integrated it with its flexibility for localised demand management. This effort has been lauded by the Asian Power Awards as it received the Smart Grid Project of the Year - Hong Kong category win.
Developing environmentally-friendly substation
The company has also brought home the Transmission & Distribution Project of the Year - Silver win in the coveted awards programme for its modern and sustainable Kwu Tung North Substation. The substation will provide highly reliable and safe power supply to the Kwu Tung North New Development Area, which will become a new compact urban area including a mix of residential, commercial, research and development infrastructure and community facilities.
This substation project reflects CLP Power’s commitment and dedication to decarbonising its infrastructure for power supply to contribute to greater sustainability. Green and intelligent design is adopted, such as the installation of a grid-connected photovoltaic panel system for capturing solar energy and a rainwater harvest system to collect rainwater for irrigation. Energy-efficient installations are provided in the substation, including LED lighting and water-efficient fixtures. The low-rise building design and vertical greenery walls blend harmoniously with the surrounding landscape, and low-noise type plant equipment are introduced to reduce disturbance to the local community.
The project team deployed innovative technologies in the establishment of the substation, such as building information modelling, virtual reality, and computational fluid dynamic modelling. A 3D simulation model of the substation was created in early design stage to communicate with project stakeholders regarding the construction and operation. It significantly enhances the buildability and safety provisions within the substation, as well as improves the efficiency of future operation and maintenance activities.
CLP Power has taken environmental considerations when designing the substation. The Kwu Tung North substation has also attained provisional platinum grading in the BEAM Plus assessment, the highest rating of the green building assessment in Hong Kong.
Cheung said the company was honoured to receive the two awards as they recognised the power expertise and exceptional performance of the project teams. “As one of the leading power utilities, CLP Power is committed to integrating green and sustainable features in our new substations, and adopting innovative technologies to enhance power network efficiency, providing greener, smarter and highly reliable electricity supply to our customers, and supporting the city’s continuous development,” he said.
The Asian Power Awards, now in its 19th year, celebrates and honours companies and projects that have taken innovative and game-changing steps to address the effects of the climate crisis and meet the growing demand for energy.
The Asian Power Awards is presented by Asian Power Magazine. To view the full list of winners, click here. If you want to join the 2024 awards programme and be acclaimed for your company's revolutionary innovations and initiatives in the power industry in Asia, please contact Julie Anne Nuñez at [email protected].