The company’s sophisticated models involve long-term projections of both the physical characteristics of electricity plants, such as operation, emissions and fuel consumption, and financial information, such as electricity prices and profitability. Models typically simulate every single power station across Europe, factoring in parameters such as flows within each national grid and across the interconnectors joining them, as well as storage capacity, seasons and weather patterns.
As European energy policy heads towards lowering carbon emissions, the role of renewable sources such as wind and solar power will become more important. Pöyry’s projections investigate how current thermal and hydro sources will hold up and how they can be balanced against sources which can vary unpredictably: is it a windy day today? Is it sunny? Is it summer or winter? Is it day or night?
BID3 is Pöyry Management Consulting’s power market model. It is used to simulate supply and demand in electricity markets, modelling the hourly generation of an individual plant or all power stations in a specific system, and taking into account historical weather patterns, fuel prices and operational constraints such as the cost of starting a plant. It can cover both short-term analysis and long-term scenarios. Clients, including National Grid and transmission operators in Norway and Germany, can use it to plan a transmission system, find out what power stations are on or off at a given time, balance hydro systems against wind (for example), or decide if they need to build an interconnector or new power station.
Pöyry sells both the forecasts it produces and the BID3 model itself. It turned to OCC to create a user-friendly interface. “We do the coding in-house, but OCC was a great help when we needed software to create an outward-facing interface,” says James Cox, a director of Pöyry UK. “BID3 is always ongoing – a client gets data updates every six months – and OCC also provides support for that. We’ve found them to be very effective and professional.”