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Demand Management - Are you in the know? 11.10.2016

Demand Management. If you're not familiar with the term, then it is time to get acquainted - particularly with Summer just around the corner.

Meet Richard Bird.

Richard has been involved in the genset industry for over 50 years. He has been involved in complex digital control systems for fully automatic control of power stations, both small and large.

Former director of ComAp's head office in Prague, Czech Republic, Richard is at the forefront of new developments in control technology including those for mission critical systems, demand maangement and renewable hybrid systems. We interviewed Richard about demand management, recent projects and why it is worth our attention.

Demand management - what is it?

It's a way of managing when and how much electricity is used by a consumer - whether it be - industrial, commercial or residential, specifically on days of peak demand. An option for management, as suggested by SA Power Networks, is the introduction of a generator in order to reduce the pressure placed on electricity providers. The generator is intended for use at times of peak demand such as extremely hot days. 

Demand management can be achieved by using batteries, photovoltaic arrays or a genset, with the genset being the most flexible and reliable option. Many buildings, both industrial and commercial are already equipped with in-house standby diesel generators to protect them against any unplanned power outages. These generators only require some simple modifications, which upon completion will provide you with additional benefits such as remote monitoring and control for staff and a no-break return after a power failure. 

Why should I invest my money in a demand-side management scheme?

The introduction of this system can provide some major benefits for you or your business, as a consumer of energy. Utilising a demand management scheme essentially means using a combination of a generator and electricity network as your source of power, and using the generator at times of peak demand.

Can you give me an example of a demand management scheme?

ComAp Pty Ltd recently carried out a large-scale installation on Perth building; QV1. In the centre of Perth's business district, this 43-story, premium grade office tower was specifically designed to minimise energy costs. Designed by architect, Harry Seidler it uses double glazing and sunshades to improve HVAC efficiency. ComAp Pty Ltd was responsible for modernising the emergency backup power control system of the building's emergency power generators. The existing control system was functional, capable of supporting the building load and was maintained at a high level. However, it did not enable the import and export of power for the genset group. The upgrade was specifically to enable the QV1 building to take advantage of a demand management scheme.

What are the technical details of the installation?

The three generators (11kV/1.4MW) within the control system are now fully controlled and managed by ComAp controllers and monitored in the control room via an InteliVision 17Touch Display. Import/export power control of the genset group - by an InteliMains controller together with a utility specified protection, InteliPro, means that the power generation plant can synchronise with the electrical utility. This allows for bump-less transfer of load in a demand-side management program event. This system also ensures that if the grid power supply fails, the generators can automatically switch over and take the building's load back to the grid when the mains comes back online.

How do I find out more?

So, you don't have a 43 story building, but the idea is appealing? Perhaps, you are responsible for the energy bill or looking at cost reduction for a shopping centre, factory, hospital, university, swimming pool or other type of facility. You probably already have a standby generator so the upgrade costs will be minimal.

If you want to find out more check with your local electricity provider and contact ComAp pty Ltd to have a chat to one of our sales team members.

P: +61 8 8177 0333

Other resources:

1. Demand Management: Using customers' standby sets is the best option 

2. Utilising Customers' Standby Sets in Demand Management (pp.48-49)


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