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Author Topic: UK no coal record broken  (Read 8346 times)
JohnS
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« Reply #30 on: June 02, 2019, 11:46:21 AM »

I presume that the chart does not include embedded solar. Or any solar?
Does the 11am to 3pm demand look any different on a dull overcast day?
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nowty
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« Reply #31 on: June 02, 2019, 01:31:05 PM »

The low Sunday/Monday night predicted to be 17.1 Gw  is this a new low -could be.

Yes, and how low will gas generation go, could be a new record there too.

Its fairly breezy today but the forecast is for stronger winds in Scotland peaking overnight. I am guessing the record low demand is because some of the wind generation is not metered. And to a lesser extend people like me with battery storage.

I grabbed the last two lowest demand figures from Gridwatch. There was a few even lower ones but there was no consistency in the data so I ignored them.

2016-08-08 02:00:03       18.201GW
2019-05-27 02:15:36       18.208GW
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brackwell
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« Reply #32 on: June 02, 2019, 06:05:57 PM »

They have now changed the predicted low to 19.8Gw
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ecogeorge
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« Reply #33 on: June 02, 2019, 08:12:08 PM »


[/quote]
Its fairly breezy today but the forecast is for stronger winds in Scotland peaking overnight.
[/quote]

AS someone currently camping in Scotland i can confirm the forecast.I have just tied our tent to a fence post to hold it down.

George.
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brackwell
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« Reply #34 on: June 03, 2019, 07:08:06 AM »

Nat Grid had to curtail wind last night even though we were exporting not helped by the Western Link still being down.

The E7 increase was quite noticeable last night,people charging their cars for the coming week. More EVs charging on E7/TOU will greatly help as more wind production is brought on line

https://www.bmreports.com/bmrs/?q=eds/main
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nowty
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« Reply #35 on: June 03, 2019, 02:39:26 PM »

Yes the demand did not fall below 20GW and gas did not drop below 4.8GW. Disappointing really.

My house can cope with zero grid demand and 100% renewables for months on end, that grid has got to get sorted.
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stannn
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« Reply #36 on: June 05, 2019, 05:12:42 PM »

This particular record has come to an end at 18 days and 6 hours. https://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/3076815/uks-record-coal-free-run-comes-to-an-end
« Last Edit: June 06, 2019, 11:27:49 AM by stannn » Logged

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oliver90owner
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« Reply #37 on: June 06, 2019, 06:19:18 AM »

I liked that report.  Told us that the coal generation was not actually required, as it happened (presumably coal generation was brought back on line for possible required use on Thursday, not Wednesday night.  It produced no more electricity than the minimum required for running up the plant?

The comment that the grid is aiming to be able to do without any fossil fuel generation by 2025 only means that sufficient alternative ‘restart of the grid’ options will be available by then.  The comment re ‘weather permitting’ is a joke as the weather will clearly not permit fossil-free during the winter months and on low-wind days at any time of the year.

Of course the grid will use the cheapest energy supplies available - and nuclear, along with renewables, don’t require ‘chemical’ energy inputs during operation.

It will befuddle those that don’t have too much brain power and will likely be quoted back by some of them when it becomes clear (to them) that gas generation will be continuing beyond that date....
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M
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« Reply #38 on: June 06, 2019, 07:23:00 AM »

I liked that report.  Told us that the coal generation was not actually required, as it happened (presumably coal generation was brought back on line for possible required use on Thursday, not Wednesday night.  It produced no more electricity than the minimum required for running up the plant?

The comment that the grid is aiming to be able to do without any fossil fuel generation by 2025 only means that sufficient alternative ‘restart of the grid’ options will be available by then.  The comment re ‘weather permitting’ is a joke as the weather will clearly not permit fossil-free during the winter months and on low-wind days at any time of the year.

Of course the grid will use the cheapest energy supplies available - and nuclear, along with renewables, don’t require ‘chemical’ energy inputs during operation.

It will befuddle those that don’t have too much brain power and will likely be quoted back by some of them when it becomes clear (to them) that gas generation will be continuing beyond that date....

It's not the best grammar, but it is correct:

Quote
The government plans to close all the UK's coal plants by 2025, while National Grid is working to ensure fully fossil free generation across the grid by the same date, when weather conditions allow.

The NG has said that they are working to hopefully make the grid capable of running on 100% FF free by 2025 when/if generation is high enough. They are not suggesting 100% FF free on an annual basis, just if the RE + nuclear is enough to meet all demand, which I'd assume are periods of low demand during the summer, or nights.

Also, I think 'weather permitting' in the longer term is also entirely correct as we deploy intra-day storage as that would mean small excess being stored and covering small shortfalls, before expanding to cover medium and large excess/shortfalls.

Further down the 'weather permitting' route would be larger scale, longer term storage of RE excess. This could be CAES, LAES, H2 and bio-gas storage, all from RE generation, all stocks dependent
on earlier prevailing weather conditions (excess). Perhaps (without wishing to start an argument) this could also include stockpiled bio-mass for generation capacity taken off-line during favourable wind/solar weather conditions, again a form of storage (time shifting bio-mass generation).

Again, I agree that the comment is not clearly laid out, but I think RE generation and weather permitting are related terms, and do make sense when we start to consider the bigger issues, longer term, and the RE/storage package that we will have to deploy going forward.

Regarding gas generation continuing past 2025, absolutely, you are correct. But that figure will continue to decline*, and if at any point the gas being burnt is bio-gas from storage, then I'd also argue that that is 'gas free' in the sense that it would be FF free, and the gas burnt is simply a form of RE storage.

*Gas consumption for leccy generation has varied depending on the relative price v's coal, but at it's high around 10yrs ago, when coal and gas were supplying about 75% of our generation, gas consumption was about 400TWh. During gas lows / coal highs, gas was about 200TWh. Today gas, whilst shouldering almost all the FF load, is about 300TWh pa.
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gnarly
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« Reply #39 on: June 06, 2019, 07:42:20 AM »

One thing I really don't understand is why coal has been coming on for a few hours **at night**.
The power stations don't like 'cycling' and bringing on coal at night surely means that some additional CCS gas plant is being turned off instead.  The power stations are already complaining that intermittent wind and sun increases their cycling and the old plants aren't designed for the thermal stress.

Does anybody know?
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brackwell
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« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2019, 07:57:40 AM »

" the grid is aiming to be able to do without any fossil fuel generation by 2025 "  Nothing to say it will, be it the aim or the generation. Just political posturing.
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dan_b
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« Reply #41 on: June 06, 2019, 08:57:35 AM »

I don’t understand how you can say that the National Grid’s operational plan to have zero coal by 2025 and also be able to run the grid completely fossil free when ever possible in the same year is political posturing?  That’s literally what their business plan is setting to achieve and it’s a heck of a task to push all that synchronised dispatchable generation into obsolescence when it’s the basis for how we’ve generated and consumed electricity for more than a century?
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azps
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« Reply #42 on: June 06, 2019, 09:14:51 AM »

One thing I really don't understand is why coal has been coming on for a few hours **at night**.
The power stations don't like 'cycling' and bringing on coal at night surely means that some additional CCS gas plant is being turned off instead.  The power stations are already complaining that intermittent wind and sun increases their cycling and the old plants aren't designed for the thermal stress.

Does anybody know?


At a guess, it might be because coal plants take some time to get up to being ready for full output. And if they're going to be needed, it's probably around the time of the morning ramp-up of demand, 0530-0900. So, they need to come online overnight. If they're then not going to be needed for the day, they'll get taken offline, and either kept at warm-start, or taken all the way back down to cold.
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Philip R
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« Reply #43 on: June 06, 2019, 09:41:06 AM »

Gnarly,
The observation that when grid load sinks and little gas CCGT is connected, a coal unit is run instead of another gas unit or pumped storage unit.
I have noted this, goes against all normal logic of thermal cycling coal plant.
Going back to my old cegb plant engineers training, I would say its due to the inertia and stability a large turbine generator provides. In addition, the coal plants have drum boilers which can store large amounts of energy as part heated saturated steam in the drum. This offers an energy supply lasting a few seconds that can be used if demanded by say a transient on the grid. In addition, short term shutdown of the steam feed heating train can provide tens of MW for about 15-20 minutes, before the de aerators run out of hot water.

Needless to say, the coal plants are fantastic tool to maintain grid stability than is generally understood.

The  dinorwig plant can run their machines synchronised with the turbines in air so water is not being wasted, however, since grid was forced by John Majors tories to sell dinorwig to first hydro, the contract terms for its use changed.

The complete loss of coal, albeit at low load only will in my opinion become a more serious issue as they are closed.
Fast grid connected dispatchable units  employing batteries, flywheels, compressed gas hydrogen ir whatever,possibly coupled to a rotating machine for transient stability will mitigate the problem. Problem will be the additional cost!

Philip R
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M
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« Reply #44 on: June 06, 2019, 01:01:08 PM »

" the grid is aiming to be able to do without any fossil fuel generation by 2025 "  Nothing to say it will, be it the aim or the generation. Just political posturing.

As per Dan's response, I think there is some confusion here.

The 'extinction' of coal by 2025 is a government policy not posturing, nor wishful thinking. And in fact it's all but there already, in 2018 coal was down to 5% only just above solar at 4%, and in Q1 this year solar almost matched coal (UK winter!)

And the National Grid ESO (now a separate company (since Apr)) plans to have it capable of working without FF's by 2025. This is their business plan, again not a wish list.

This is were the English gets somewhat confusing - zero FF generation 'at times' in 2025, doesn't mean all of 2025, which is of course a perfectly fair way to read 'FF free in 2025', which I'd argue implies 'all of 2025'.

Will we hit FF free periods in 2025 ....... I dunno, but it certainly seems possible, so the NG ESO needs to plan accordingly I suppose.

Just a personal musing, but if 'UK coal free generation' is a great news heading, I can hardly wait for the first period when we go FF free, and then the fun as we hit longer and longer periods.
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