Successful start of FCR auctions

01.07.2020

The cooperation on regional procurement and exchange of frequency containment reserve (FCR) is a voluntary initiative of eight transmission system operators (TSOs): the six TSCNET shareholders 50Hertz, Amprion, and TransnetBW from Germany, APG from Austria, Swissgrid from Switzerland, and the Dutch-German TSO TenneT, as well as Elia from Belgium and the French TSO RTE. The FCR project is the first regional cooperation for a common market based on the methodology for the exchange of control reserves set out in the EU Guideline on Electricity Balancing. Within the scope of a cooperation model with Amprion, the Luxembourg TSCNET customer Creos is also involved.

The next milestone in the development of the largest European market for primary balancing power reserve has now been reached, as the first D-1 auction for FCR with 4-hour products was successfully conducted on 30 June 2020. This means, the FCR cooperation reduces the product length from one day to four hours and thus the market for primary balancing power is brought closer to real time.

Due to stronger competition between service providers and technologies, the joint auction allows TSOs to procure FCRs at minimum cost to end-users while offering a large common market for all providers of balancing services. It also increases the market attractiveness for short-term flexibility, limits price volatility and improves the security of grid operation by executing cross zonal procurement of FCR. The FCR market, already the largest in Europe, will be extended to western Denmark and Slovenia in the first quarter of 2021, so that with Energinet and ELES two further TSCNET shareholders will broaden the project.

The FCR cooperation successfully conducted the first D-1 auction for FCR with 4-hour products 

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> See Swissgrid news release (html)

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Luxembourg integrated into FCR cooperation

01.06.2020

Eight central European transmission system operators (TSOs) cooperate in the regional procurement and exchange of Frequency Containment Reserve (FCR). Their joint FCR project is the first regional cooperation in Europe to implement market harmonisation in accordance with the EU Guideline on Electricity Balancing. The participating TSOs are APG, 50Hertz, Amprion, TransnetBW, and Swissgrid – the Austrian, German and Swiss TSCNET shareholders –, the Dutch-German shareholder TenneT as well as the Belgian TSO Elia and the French TSO RTE. It is intended to extend the joint FCR procurement towards western Denmark, so that the central European TSOs are supplemented by Energinet from Denmark as a non-active member.

Luxembourg was missing in the cooperation so far, but cross-border primary control reserve (PCR) between Germany and Luxembourg is now also possible: Since 1 June 2020, balancing service providers (BSPs) from Luxembourg are participating in the joint tender for FCR cooperation. For this purpose, the TSO Amprion, whose German control area is bordering the Grand-Duchy, and the Luxembourgian TSCNET customer Creos have developed a cooperation model. Under this model, Amprion assumes the role of the connecting TSO, carries out the prequalification of the BSPs, concludes the framework agreement for PCR, and takes over the settlement with the BSPs from the Creos control area.

Since Amprion and Creos operate a joint load-frequency-control area, a pooling of technical units within this common area is permissible. Thus, a pool can include Luxembourgian as well as German units that provide balancing services. This means that a BSP may combine generation units or controllable consumer loads from both countries and offer them collectively on the PCR market.

The central European FCR cooperation was extended to Luxembourg (picture: Cedric Letsch)

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> See Amprion press release, in German (html)

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Luxembourgian TSO welcomed as new client

16.10.2017

TSCNET Services has signed a service-level agreement (SLA) with Creos Luxembourg (www.creos-net.lu), the national electricity and gas grid operator. Creos manages 585km of power transmission lines within the country. The service package consists mainly of security sssessment services for forecasting electricity flows and potential congestions within Luxembourg and at the main connection line to neighbouring electricity networks.

A recent interconnection project at Creos using the existing 220kV grid infrastructure and a new 400MW phase shifting transformer (PST) to interconnect the Belgian grid (Elia) with the Luxembourgish grid (Creos) and thus interconnecting the German and the Belgian control block makes cross-border coordination even more necessary. TSCNET Services supports Creos in maintaining the operational security of the electricity system.

“Treat a new client like the most important one” – that’s what many business consultants recommend. For TSCNET Services, this is not the point. For us, it is about guiding a new client successfully through the same security-relevant processes as any other client. With Creos, everything went flawlessly! On the 11th of October, the new client participated in the joint security assessment processes for the first time.

The other TSCNET customers will also profit from the agreement: The representation of the Luxembourgian transmission grid in the increasingly harmonised European data models will be more precise and reliable.

> Open TSCNET Services press release (pdf, 217kb)

Image on the right: Creos Luxembourg S. A.

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Impressions from the successful Creos go-live training and preparatory meetings

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