ERCOT – Another North American Location Available on the LiveGen Widget

The latest location to be added to the LiveGen™ widget is the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). The widget currently displays live generation data for 34 locations from around the globe including 8 locations in North America.

LiveGen_NorthAmerica
To see the real-time data for North America or to view other locations from around the world go to the LiveGen™ service which is available here:


http://data.reneweconomy.com/LiveGen
ERCOT covers most, but not all, of Texas and is the only reliability council within the USA Southern Interconnection. Due to the limited connection points with other grids, ERCOT essentially operates as a separate electrical island where supply and demand must be constantly balanced. A small amount of power is imported and exported between the South West Power Pool and the Mexican power pool via 5 interconnection points.


nercInterconnectionsMap_Thumb

Source: http://www.ercot.com/news/mediakit/maps

ERCOT manages the supply of electricity to 24 million customers in Texas with an average demand of 43,243MW with an all-time peak demand of 63,305MW on the 3rd August 2011.

The live generation data published for ERCOT shows the total actual online generation (High Sustained Limit). Although real-time fuel type data is not available from ERCOT the breakdown of generation by fuel type is published annually.


ERCOT_2015_Pie
 


ERCOT_2005and2015_Bar

*Includes solar, petroleum coke, landfill gas, biomass solids, biomass gases and any unknown fuel
Source: http://www.ercot.com/content/wcm/lists/89476/GenerationByFuelType_2002_2015.xls
We’re always looking for more locations to add into the LiveGen™ widget – if you know of some please contact us!

Seeking sources of Live Solar Output to include in our International LiveGen™ widget

As a long-time data junkie working in a company that seeks to make complexity understandable, the electricity sector has always been fertile ground.  Even moreso, more recently …

Some of you will be aware of how we’ve been delighted to work with RenewEconomy in the extension of the service provided by our installed NEM-Watch software, with their sponsorship of our NEM-Watch Fuel Type Widget – accessible here, and also embedded at a growing number of places:

http://reneweconomy.com.au/nem-watch

Based on popular feedback, more recently we’ve been expanding the scope of this concept to have it cover a growing number of locations across the world.  Our objective is to make it a truly world-wide, numerical view of what’s currently happening.

The new LiveGen™ service is available here (amongst other places):

http://data.reneweconomy.com/LiveGen

(click on a location name in the widget for more detail about that location).

Here’s a static view from today (Thursday 7th April 2016 in Australia around 12:00 UTC+10), but remember to access the link above to see it live:

LiveGen-2016-04-07-12-12-at-UTC+10-00

We understand that that the take-up rate of small-scale solar across Australia leads the world.  The challenge, from the perspective of someone who wants to look holistically, is that the output from these many distributed power generators is not metered or aggregated in real time.

Thankfully, ARENA provided financial assistance to the APVI (Australian PV Institute) to enable them to develop a sampling-and-extrapolation methodology to provide some transparency about this particular data source.  We married these together with the metered data for other wholesale generation types supplied by the Australian Energy Market Operator to produce a holistic view (not much to see in the image above, but wait till the sun comes up again).

Unfortunately, to date, we’ve not found much in the way of equivalent solar data for the other locations across the world – hence we’re seeking your assistance.   As such, the picture we’ve started to paint of the fuel type mix in other locations is incomplete (it’s one of the issues we’re working through).

If you know of where we can source the live (or near real-time) data for electricity production from solar PV to include in LiveGen™ please let us know.

When I have time, I’ll try to post more here about other aspects of the LiveGen™ widget, as it continues to evolve.

We (very much) would welcome your comments, criticisms, compliments and (most importantly) suggestions for improvement.