Northern Ireland Electricity plans for the single electricity market

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Belfast, Northern Ireland — (METERING.COM) — February 8, 2007 – Northern Ireland Electricity (NIE), the major energy supplier in Northern Ireland with 770,000 domestic and small business customers and a subsidiary of Viridian Group, has selected the LODESTAR® Customer Choice Suite™ software to help meet the requirements of Ireland’s Single Electricity Market (SEM) by November 2007.

This year, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland are moving to a single electricity market. Beginning in November, all market participants – generators and suppliers – will be required to operate within the mandatory pool market. A new market design brings new market rules and timelines for bidding and settling energy transactions.

To ensure that the SEM functions effectively, NIE requires a data aggregation system that manages generation and consumption information from a full range of generator and consumer categories to provide data to the Single Market Operator and Market Participants. This system must aggregate metering data from a variety of sources into a format consistent with the settlement requirements of the All-Island Market Operator.

NIE chose the LODESTAR CCS after a rigorous selection process, because of its extended meter data aggregation, load profile and settlement capabilities. The software will be configured to accommodate Northern Ireland-specific profiling of non-interval metering data and to provide the aggregation results for both interval and non-interval metered customers – the Market Participant metered ‘position’ – for both the Single Market Operator and Market Participants. The generated information will be a critical piece of the All-Island Market, allowing the Market Operator to produce settlement results on Market Participants’ positions and provided services. The system will be in a position to support aggregation processes for up to 800,000 customers in Northern Ireland.

"The Single Electricity Market initiative poses a number of technical challenges to our business," said Caroline Murphy, GM, Group Technology, NIE. "Of particular importance to NIE was LODESTAR’s proven track record in delivering its solution rapidly to meet challenging market-opening timescales."