Extension of the primary frequency control market to include new technologies
On 1 May 2017, Elia introduced a new contractual framework governing the provision of the primary frequency control service (FCR or R1). This framework sets out new rules designed to further enhance suppliers' flexibility with respect to possible combinations of the resources in their portfolio.
In addition, market players can now participate in the primary frequency control service using resources with limited energy reserves, such as batteries.
This development is in keeping with the multiannual development plan drawn up in 2016 by Elia in close collaboration with the relevant distribution system operators and market players. The aim of this development plan is, among others, to open up the product FCR (R1) to all kinds of technology (including demand-side management and resources with limited energy reserves, such as batteries), irrespective of the (TSO/DSO) connection point or type of supplier (BSP/BRP).
The first phase was successfully completed in August 2016 when Elia proposed a first new version of these rules allowing any supplier to participate in all primary control services, irrespective of the connection point of the resource involved.
The new plan was drawn up in the wake of developments over the past few years regarding Belgium's generating facilities. As new technologies, like batteries, and decentralised generation have emerged, Elia has noted an increase in the number of sources of flexibility capable of providing a primary frequency control service, whereby each source has its own very specific technical properties.
Implementing these developments achieves Elia's prime objective, making it a pioneer in the integration of decentralised sources of flexibility on the European market.