ACER consultation on Core Capacity Calculation methodology

04.12.2018

Complex issues require precise phrasing. Therefore the new public consultation of the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) is called: “Public Consultation on the amendments of the proposal for common capacity calculation methodology for the Core region”. The consultation has opened on 4 December and will be accessible until midnight on Christmas Eve. Invited to participate are all interested stakeholders, including regulatory authorities, nominated electricity market operators (NEMOs) and transmission system operators (TSOs).

What exactly is the objective of the survey? The Capacity Calculation Methodology (CCM) quantifies the electrical capacity that can be offered across borders to the day-ahead and intraday markets. The Core CCM is valid within the Core Capacity Calculation Region (CCR), which comprises Austria, Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia. The TSOs from the Core CCR – among them are the twelve TSCNET shareholders 50Hertz, Amprion, APG, ČEPS, ELES, HOPS, MAVIR, PSE, SEPS, TenneT, Transelectrica and TransnetBW – have conceived and proposed amendments to the Core CCM.

The competent regulatory authorities of the Core CCR have not yet approved the TSO proposal and asked ACER to decide on whether the modified Core CCM complies with the European Capacity Allocation and Congestion Management (CACM) Regulation. Interested parties are invited to provide feedback on the consultation questions concerning the relevant aspects of the Core CCM.

ACER launches public consultation on the compliance of the Core CCM proposed by the Core TSOs with the European CACM Regulation

Linkup
> See ACER press release (html)
> Direct access to consultation (html)

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Autonomous drones for digital line maintenance

14.11.2018

The supra-regional Austrian transmission grid is about 3,500km long. This critical infrastructure must be constantly monitored, which can be very demanding, as power lines often run in impassable terrain. In the future, digital solutions will not only determine the control of the entire power system, but also have the potential to facilitate the continuous monitoring of supply lines. This is why the Austrian TSCNET shareholder APG is one of the first transmission system operators (TSOs) in Europe to test autonomous flying drones.

“Operating a power grid is a high-tech business today,” comments Gerhard Christiner, CTO at APG, and continues that the TSO is always searching for technological innovations to continuously improve system safety. Paul Zachoval and Rainer Wagenhofer, project managers for APG’s drone project, explain: “In order to check the APG network for possible damage, our colleagues in the line maintenance team cover a distance every year whose length corresponds to the distance from Vienna to Beijing. The possibilities offered by autonomous flying drones to support this inspection work are enormous.”

After almost six years of development, expectations are high. Some damage to power lines can only be seen from the air and the drones can provide information about current damage even in bad weather and poor visibility. Drones allow shorter inspection intervals and can thus improve security of supply. And finally, they also contribute to the safety of employees, as in many cases it will no longer be necessary to climb the pylons. APG’s recent tests are conducted in cooperation with the Lower Austrian company SmartDigital Concepts (SDC). The SDC flight devices are high-tech drones developed specifically for the requirements of TSOs among others. They are equipped with specialised measuring devices and cameras for the maintenance of infrastructure systems.

APG ist testing autonomous drones for digital line maintenance (picture: screenshot taken from demonstration video)

Linkup
> See APG press release, in German (html)
> Watch APG demonstration video “Fliegende Helfer”, in German (YouTube)

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Approval for upgrade of Weinviertel line

12.11.2018

Transparent and comprehensible planning, extensive information for communities, landowners and residents, and the sustainable consideration of environmental interests – the efforts of the Austrian TSCNET shareholder APG have paid off: The national transmission system operator (TSO) has been validly approved to modernise and upgrade the overhead line through the Weinviertel (“wine quarter”) in the northeast of Lower Austria. APG is investing €200m in the project and construction will start in summer 2019.

The increase in capacity of the more than 70-year-old line from 220kV to mostly 380kV is to be accompanied by the bundling of infrastructure, which results in a reduction of 15km of line and 53 pylons and thus relieves the population and nature reserves. In addition, the new line will be connected to the regional distribution grid via a new substation to be built in Neusiedl/Zaya. This will significantly improve the quality of the electricity supply in the Weinviertel and is a precondition for the further integration of wind and solar energy in Lower Austria.

Dr. Ulrike Baumgartner-Gabitzer, CEO of APG, comments on the approval: “We are happy about this result as a consequence of a very transparent process involving all parties concerned.” Gerhard Christiner, CTO of the TSO, emphasises the importance of the upgrade both for supply security as well as the integration of renewables and adds: “The Weinviertel line is an essential component for the realisation of the energy and climate strategy #mission 2030 adopted by the Austrian Federal Government.”

APG has received approval to upgrade the Weinviertel line in Lower Austria (picture: photo composition)

Linkup
> See APG press release, in German (html)

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ELES presents FutureFlow progress

08.11.2018

The EU-funded FutureFlow project explores innovative e-trading solutions for smart cross-border balancing and redispatching in the control areas of four central-south European transmission system operators (TSOs), all shareholders of TSCNET. The project is coordinated by the Slovenian TSO ELES, the other TSO participants being APG from Austria, MAVIR from Hungary, and Transelectrica from Romania. In times of increasing regenerative energy generation and lack of flexibility services from conventional plants, the FutureFlow consortium considers the prosumer as a new source of flexibility for the transmission grid.

A cross-border pilot with 48MW of flexible power capacity in Austria, Hungary, Romania and Slovenia has already proven that the involvement of the prosumers can save regulating energy. In order to communicate these and other results, ELES representatives took the opportunity to promote FutureFlow during the “European Utility Week” in the Austrian capital of Vienna. At the introductory panel “Interoperable Platforms and Data Exchange for Energy Services” on 6 November, mag. Uroš Salobir, Director of the Strategic Innovation Department at ELES, explained with regard to the cross-border integration of the system service markets: “For automatic frequency control, the FutureFlow project offers 60% savings and up to 57% for redispatching.”

Eles promoted the FutureFlow project for smart cross-border balancing and redispatching on the “European Utility Week” in Vienna (picture based on screenshots taken from FutureFlow promotional video)

Linkup
> See ELES press release (html)
> Visit FutureFlow website (html)
> Watch FutureFlow promotional video “Prosumers as guardians of the power system” (YouTube)

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Acer decision on fallback procedures for Core CCR

09.10.2018

In March 2018, the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) was asked by the competent regulatory authorities to decide on the amended proposal of the transmission system operators (TSOs) from the Core Capacity Calculation Region (CCR) regarding the Core CCR fallback procedures. In the following August, ACER invited all interested stakeholders to share their views on the issue in a public consultation. After evaluating the survey, ACER has now published its decision on revisions to the methodology for fallback procedures.

The Core CCR consists of sixteen Central European TSOs, twelve of which are TSCNET shareholders: APG (Austria), ČEPS (Czechia), ELES (Slovenia), HOPS (Croatia), MAVIR (Hungary), PSE (Poland), SEPS (Slovakia), Transelectrica (Romania), the Dutch-German TSO TenneT, and the three further TSOs from Germany 50Hertz, Amprion, and TransnetBW. ACER’s decision introduces minimal changes to fallback procedures in order to improve legal clarity and enforceability. Most importantly, instead of five different shadow allocation rules, only a single set of rules is adopted by the Agency, which specifies in its decision to which bidding zone borders these rules apply.

ACER has published its decision on the improvement of the fallback procedures proposed by the TSOs of the Core CCR

Linkup
> See ACER press release (html, with access to decision and consultation results)

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Congestion management on Austro-German border

10.09.2018

Congestion management will be introduced on the border between Austria and Germany on 1 October 2018. This go-live date was approved by the competent regulatory authorities at the beginning of September and has now been confirmed by all responsible decision-making bodies of the Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs) and the affected transmission system operators (TSOs), which are all shareholders of TSCNET: APG from Austria and the four German TSOs 50Hertz, Amprion, TenneT, and TransnetBW.

Electricity exchange between Austria and Germany has increased in recent years. In order to ensure safe operation of transmission systems in Austria, Germany and neighbouring countries, and to reduce congestion management costs, the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) included the introduction of a bidding zone split between Austria and Germany in the new design of the European Capacity Calculation Regions (CCRs). Following successful testing of the systems, the operational procedures as well as the scheduling and nomination processes, the TSOs concerned now will implement this decision.

To ensure safe operation of transmission systems, congestion management will be introduced on Austro-German border on 1 October 2018

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XBID is running stable

07.09.2018

The successful launch of the European Cross-Border Intraday (XBID) solution and ten XBID related Local Implementation Projects (LIPs) in June 2018 has marked a significant step towards the creation of a single integrated continent-wide intraday market. The aim of the XBID initiative is increasing the overall efficiency of cross-border trading and intraday coupling, which both are key components of the future European internal energy market.

The XBID solution has been running now for over two and a half months without any major incidents, delivering continuous trading of electricity across Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden. Many other European countries are to follow in a second XBID-wave in 2019. Up to now, the number of trades in XBID has exceeded 2.5m. As a result of this satisfactory commissioning, the Steering Committee, in consultation with the Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs) and Transmission System Operators (TSOs) involved, decided to shut down the rollback systems.

Among the TSOs collaborating in XBID are the TSCNET shareholders 50Hertz, Amprion, APG, Energinet, TenneT, and TransnetBW, as well as TSCNET client Creos from Luxembourg. Together they have developed a common IT system including one shared order book, a capacity management module, and a shipping module. XBID makes it possible to bring together bids of market participants from different market areas within the region covered by the project, provided there is sufficient cross-border transmission capacity. It thus bundles the whole European intraday continuous market and complements the existing day ahead market.

The XBID solution for a single integrated European cross-border intraday market is running stable and availability of rollback systems has ceased

Linkup
> See Amprion press release, in German (html)
> See Energinet press release (html)
> See TenneT press release, in German (html)
> See TransnetBW press release, in German (html)
> See ENTSO-E press release (html)

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ACER consultation on fallback procedures

02.08.2018

The relevant regulatory authorities have asked the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) to review the fallback procedures in the Core Capacity Calculation Region (CCR) with regard to the European Regulation on Capacity Allocation and Congestion Management (CACM). The Core CCR consists of sixteen central European transmission system operators (TSOs), eleven of which are TSCNET shareholders: APG (Austria), ČEPS (Czechia), ELES (Slovenia), HOPS (Croatia), MAVIR (Hungary), PSE (Poland), SEPS (Slovakia), the Dutch-German TSO TenneT, and the three further TSOs from Germany, 50Hertz, Amprion, and TransnetBW.

The Core TSOs prepared an amended proposal for the CCR fallback procedures. ACER now has been given the task of verifying that this proposal complies with the respective guideline on CACM Regulation of the European Union. Since ACER has to adopt a profound decision on this matter, the Agency takes interest in the comments from different parties on some elements of the amended proposal in order to substantiate this decision. The related public consultation is open til 24 August and all interested stakeholders, including regulatory authorities, nominated electricity market operators and TSOs, are invited to submit their comments.

ACER opens public consultation on the compliance of the fallback procedures proposed by the TSOs of the Core CCR with the CACM Regulation.

Linkup
> See ACER press release (html, with access to consultation document)

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XBID successfully launched

15.06.2018

After several years of complex and intensive development and testing, the Cross-Border Intraday (XBID) solution and ten XBID related Local Implementation Projects (LIPs) were finally initiated on 12 June, with first deliveries on 13 June. In order to create a single integrated European intraday market, several Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs) and nearly twenty transmission system operators (TSOs) from all over Europe collaborate in the XBID initiative. Among the TSOs are the TSCNET shareholders 50Hertz, Amprion, APG, Energinet, TenneT, and TransnetBW, as well as TSCNET client Creos from Luxembourg.

With a common IT system consisting of one shared order book, a capacity management module, and a shipping module, XBID bundles the whole European intraday continuous market and complements the existing day ahead market. From now on, continuous trading of electricity is possible across the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden. Most of the other European countries are to follow in a second XBID-wave in 2019.

The XBID solution for creating a single integrated European cross-border intraday electricity market was succesfully launched.

Linkup
> See Amprion press release, in German (html)
> See APG press release, in German (html)
> See Energinet press release (html)
> See TenneT press release (html)
> See TransnetBW press release, in German (html)
> See ENTSO-E press release (html)

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XBID go live-date confirmed

24.05.2018

Pan-European intraday coupling is crucial for the future European internal energy market. That’s why the Cross-Border Intraday (XBID) initiative was established with the purpose of increasing the overall efficiency of intraday trading. Several Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs) and nearly twenty transmission system operators (TSOs) from all over the continent collaborate in the XBID initiative, including the TSCNET shareholders 50Hertz, Amprion, APG, TenneT, and TransnetBW, as well as TSCNET client Creos from Luxembourg.

On a technical scale, the XBID Solution is based on a common IT system comprising one shared order book, a capacity management module, and a shipping module. The individual components must be perfectly matched, and in order for all parties participating in XBID to exercise due care, the go-live date for XBID Solution and ten related Local Implementation Projects (LIPs) was postponed earlier this year from March to June.

After a successful completion of additional testing phases as well as two market trial periods, the NEMOs and TSOs now have confirmed the go-live date for XBID. As of 13 June, the ten LIPs will deliver continuous trading of electricity across Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden. Most of the other European countries will then follow in a second XBID-wave in summer 2019.

> See Amprion press release (html)
> See APG press release (html)
> See TenneT press release (html)

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