Jane Imrie

Smart energy boost for North East and Yorkshire with £11.4m digital transformation project

A multi-million pound digital transformation programme has been announced by Northern Powergrid.

The firm, which is responsible for the electricity network that serves eight million people across the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire, is investing £11.4m on enhancing its remote network management to deliver a ‘smarter’ power grid.

The multi-million pound contract has been awarded to utility network and wireless telecommunications specialist EMR Integrated Solutions to upgrade its secondary Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system to an IP (Internet Protocol) communications platform across 7,500 distribution substations.

Mark Nicholson, Northern Powergrid’s head of smart grids, commented: “This project will enhance network flexibility and build more digital capability to meet our customers’ needs now and in the future.

“It will help facilitate our transition to a Distribution System Operator (DSO) that actively manages varying generation and demands across our grid as our customers become more dependent on electricity to power their lights, heating and transport.

“This is an exciting contract for EMR to be part of. The project design offers Northern Powergrid a secure, responsive and fully compliant technical solution, while delivering a robust and easy to manage platform for Northern Powergrid’s team of engineers,” explained Alan Feenan, sales director with EMR.

“Our approach to designing, building and supporting utility networks is viewed by many utility providers as a critical element of their digital transformation efforts and organisations such as Northern Powergrid have responded positively, viewing EMR as a safe pair of hands.”

Paul Green, project manager for Northern Powergrid, added: “The project rollout is underway and due for completion by March 2023.

“We’re working closely with the team at EMR to ensure we have the support we need to deliver our plans. Where we have technical challenges, we work together to overcome them, and the project team is very responsive which is important as we make this investment a reality for our customers.”

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