This is how the industry can help the electricity grid

The NorFlex project provides new opportunities to ensure a future-oriented and sustainable power grid. At the beginning of February, Glencore Nikkelverk in Kristiansand disconnected 5 megawatts (MW) of electricity, which corresponds to the electricity consumption of an average of around 2,000 households.

Glencore Nikkelverk in Kristiansand.
Glencore Nikkelverk in Kristiansand.

 - This is the first time we are disconnecting industrial consumption with such large volumes in the electricity grid in Agder. This is therefore an important milestone for the project, says Inger Ose, project manager for the NorFlex project in Agder Energi.

The project aims to explore technological possibilities and develop the power grid of the future by facilitating a more flexible power consumption. 

Reduced consumption

For one hour, Nikkelverket reduced power consumption in parts of its electrolysis departments in Kristiansand by 5 megawatts. Volue Market Services is the service provider which controls the consumption into the project.

- NorFlex is a project that we find exciting to participate in. The green shift contributes to changing the flexibility markets, and through NorFlex it opens up to contribute with flexibility in a different way than before, says Bård Mageli, Head of Physical Portfolio Management and Volue Market Services.

Consumption has a great value

Agder Energi Nett, which owns and operates the power grid at Agder, is participating in the project to try out how various instruments can contribute to operating the power grid as efficiently as possible.

- The green shift leads to large-scale electrification of society. This affects us as a network company, and we see that in the future we must think new to ensure a safe and cost-effective operation of the network. This is a good example of how we can use consumption to avoid congestion or unnecessary investments, says Geir Magne Abusdal, system manager at Agder Energi Nett.

The activation of Nikkelverket's disconnection was done via the NODES marketplace, which facilitates the purchase and sale of flexible consumption.

Activation of flexibility from larger industries is a milestone. Earlier in the project, flexibility has been traded and activated from several different sources such as households, commercial buildings, and batteries. With this activation of Nikkelverket, we have also tested how larger industries can offer flexibility locally, says Daniel Stølsbotn, project manager at NODES.  

By offering a marketplace for flexibility, NODES facilitates a transparent trade in flexibility services. All players compete on price, and sources of flexibility down to 1 kW can participate in the market. 

Since January 2021, NorFlex has traded over 300 MWh of flexibility between flexibility providers and the grid companies Agder Energi Nett and Glitre Energi Nett. A total of 8 different companies offer flexibility in the market.