Try balancing the grid: NGESO game gives users an insight into its task

People can try their hand at operating the GB electricity system in a game launched by National Grid ESO intended to give members of the public an insight into working a shift in the Electricity National Control Centre (ENCC).
ENCC managers work to balance the electricity system in real-time and their task is becoming more complex as the grid is becoming greener. More small power installations such as wind and solar arrays, as well as large power plants, mean more intervention and technological innovation is needed to ensure supply and demand are balanced and factors such as system voltage, inertia and frequency stay within safe parameters.
The Balancing the Grid game, which runs off the Unity platform and was developed in consultation with the ESO’s control room staff, allows players to work their first control centre shift, supported by control room supervisor ‘Jo’. The game is available to play now on the ESO’s website.
Players will need to keep a watchful eye on the system frequency dial, ensuring it stays within safe operational limits of 50Hz. As the clock ticks down, players will have to respond to cues such as peak demand hours, changes in the amount of renewable generation, or assets coming offline for maintenance. On shift, players will need to make a series of interventions, for example bringing on generation assets such as nuclear or storing excess electricity in batteries for use when it is needed, to keep the grid finely in tune.
Commenting, ESO director of system operations Craig Dyke said: “We hope that players enjoy having a go at balancing the grid and trying to make the top spot on our leader board. If this behind-the-scenes insight encourages anyone to embark on a career in power systems engineering, then all the better.”
Find the ‘manage the grid’ game here

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