Ipswich Smart City

Suffolk County Council (SCC) and Ipswich Borough Council (IBC) are partnering with Innovate UK/Future Cities Catapult on their plans for a “Smart City” project for Ipswich. One of the goals of this project is to increase the generation and use of renewable energy across Ipswich by deploying new and innovative technologies, enabled by greater connectivity using the “Internet of Things” (IoT).

Pixie Energy has been working with both councils on ways to expand the project to embrace a variety of other low-carbon initiatives. This has initially been in the form of a three-part project looking at a combination of existing and planned infrastructure focussing on the areas of economic development, increased use of renewable generation and fuel poverty, and Integrated distributed energy resources that are amenable to local energy flexibility market trading in support of smart city objectives.

Ipswich Local Supply Communities

The Ipswich Local Supply Community Project will explore mechanisms to exploit bottom-up flexibility, creating new local partnerships seeking to promote and commoditise flexibility. It will model local production and demand, and test feasibility of commercial innovations based on specific assets, using generation metering data and representative consumption data.

We will work with a supplier to model local innovation tariffs, selling electricity to different customer archetypes using our existing assessments of industry costs, and local consumption based on mapping work of actual consumption and competing supplier prices within the region.

We will also consider how consumption could change behind-the-meter under half hourly settlement (HHS), and assess the impact on bills of introducing simple time-of-use tariffs, assessing likely changes in consumer behaviour and their local flexibility values.

Sproughton Infrastructure project

As part of (but separate from) the Ipswich Smart City project, SCC and IBC wish to examine the potential for an integrated energy system at the Sproughton site, to the west of Ipswich. This would include a 5MW solar farm, battery storage, EV charging and other smart infrastructure. The long-term aim will be to test deployment of microgrids on commercial sites.

Mildenhall Hub

The Mildenhall Hub is one of the main areas of social and economic development in the West Suffolk region and is due online in 2019. It will comprise school facilities, a leisure centre, facilities for the emergency services and other public-sector assets. The site is set to include both ground source heat pumps (GSHPs) and a gas-fired Combined Heat & Power (CHP), as well as solar PV and battery storage capabilities. Pixie Energy is working with West Suffolk Council on the potential options for the site.

Western Way

As with Mildenhall Hub, the Western Way project is one of the main areas of social and economic development in West Suffolk. It is due online in 2021-22 and it is expected that relevant learnings from Mildenhall Hub will be applied here. Western Way will have a similar set of public sector assets on site as the Mildenhall Hub, but historically has been more constrained from a network perspective. Pixie Energy is working with West Suffolk Council on a strategy to include electricity & heat, and how network constraints may be overcome through non-traditional methods.

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