Transmission technologies playing a key role in future energy networks

By Jackie Barry

One of the key tenets of National Grid’s Connect 21 strategy is to build and operate better energy networks for the 21st century digital economy. To ensure we have a robust process for reviewing new technology and innovations, the Transmission Innovation Panel, or TIP, a team of senior managers from across the business, convened to develop and implement a transmission technology roadmap. Over the last six months, the TIP reviewed the drivers affecting our electric transmission networks and the technologies and innovations that will allow us to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The TIP roadmap starts with three objectives:

TIP Objectives for the Transmission Network of the Future

  • Create a dynamic network to integrate the increase in variable resources, including renewable and distributed energy resources.
System Flexibility
  • Evolve our operations to ensure costs remain affordable, enabling us to succeed in a competitive landscape, and making work safer for employees.
Smart Ops
  • Modernize the way we work, integrating physical and digital systems and allowing data analytics to improve our operations and asset utilization.

In the near-term, the TIP is focused on commercially available technologies to solve current transmission challenges and create value for customers. Sessions were held with about 50 employees across the US and UK businesses, and with external vendors and industry subject matter experts to develop our initial list of technologies for further review. The list was narrowed to six technologies that we have agreed to pursue further.


“The TIP’s work to identify and deploy technologies to advance our transmission system will enable us to make better decisions in our investments, ensure the efficiency of our transmission system and make work safer,” Rudy Wynter commented. “We’ve met with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) commissioners and they are encouraged and excited that National Grid is pursuing advanced transmission technologies that will make the transmission system more flexible, smarter and customer-responsive.”

“Our next steps are to create a deployment plan to implement these technologies on our transmission networks to accommodate growing demand for distributed and renewable generation and that ensures National Grid’s customers will fully benefit from them,” said Terron Hill, TIP chair and Network Strategy FERC Jurisdiction Liaison.

Moving forward, the TIP will be working with stakeholders and regulators to ensure the appropriate regulatory frameworks are in place to execute on our technology and innovation roadmap.

To learn more, contact Terron or one of the other TIP members.

2016/17 TIP Members

Co-sponsors — Rudy Wynter, FERC Jurisdiction

— Chris Kelly, Electric Process &  Engineering

Aman Aneja IS
Mark Ferri Group Technology
John Gavin Electric Systems Engineering
Nick Gibson Transmission Line Services
Terron Hill Network Strategy/FERC Jurisdiction Liaison
Kevin Huyler Regulatory/FERC
Mary Ellen Paravalos FERC Jurisdiction Strategy and Performance
Carol Sedewitz Electric Asset Management
Rob Sheridan New Energy Solutions
John Spink Control Center Operations
Richard Stuebi US Strategy and Group Technology
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