EVs provide power cut protection in Silent Power trial

Back-up power for the vulnerable

A new fleet of electric vans with on-board energy storage systems could help prevent temporary power outages by restoring power during a power cut or essential maintenance work.

Up to three homes or a small community centre could be powered with just one van for 24 hours – even longer if those homes have domestic solar generation.

Northern Powergrid has partnered with British energy storage SMEs Hyperdrive Innovation and Offgrid Energy to run the Silent Power trial, which aims to replace noisy and polluting diesel generators.

Patrick Erwin, policy and markets director at Northern Powergrid, said: “There is considerable opportunity for Silent Power to reduce the impact of power cuts for vulnerable people across our region, while also improving the air we all breathe and reducing noise pollution."

The first vehicle will hit the operating area’s roads during October.

“This is just one way we are demonstrating our commitment to ensuring the energy transition works for all people across our society – not just those that can afford the latest technology,” Erwin added.

More than 20% of Northern Powergrid’s customer-base is on the Priority Services Register, a service provided to customers who may need extra support in a power cut – and 12% of those on the register are medically dependant on electricity, meaning the silent power will provide them with additional support.

Danny Jones, director of OffGrid Energy, added: "The Silent Power project has been a great opportunity to take our low carbon power solutions to another level, adding a further dimension in driving out emissions from the electricity networks. 

“Working with Northern Powergrid has been a great experience for us at Off Grid where their vision and support has enabled us to push boundaries in ways that would not have otherwise been possible.”

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