Saturday 27 May 2017

GridCarbon app updated to include solar

One of the benefits of appliance-level disaggregation is the potential to provide deferral suggestions, e.g. consider running the dishwasher later in the day. Such deferral suggestions are typically motivated by either cost (in the form of time-of-use tariffs) or carbon emissions (different power stations are active at different times of day). To help visualise the latter, Alex Rogers (my PhD supervisor) and I released the GridCarbon app, which tracks the carbon intensity of the UK electricity grid in real time.

Over the years, the generation mix of UK electricity has changed substantially, with a large amount of un-metered wind and solar generation appearing on the distribution network. We recently updated both the iOS and Android apps to reflect these changes, using generation estimates of wind and solar provided by ELEXON. Yesterday saw a solar generation record, with 8.7 GW of UK electricity provided by solar at its peak, although we can see from the app that this peak was short-lived:

GridCarbon primarily functions as an educational tool, and aims to visualise and communicate the current status of the UK electricity grid. Our goal is to make this information easily accessible so that it becomes common knowledge, and encourages informed debate about the future of our electricity infrastructure.