A CUTTING-EDGE company based at Bridgwater’s Somerset Energy Innovation Centre is looking to increase the efficiency of how companies use electricity.

The company, gridIMP, has created a piece of equipment called the intelligent Demand Side Response (iDSR) system which connects with the existing building management system to assess energy usage patterns, and can turn assets on or off in response to calls from the National Grid for more energy at peak times.

Demand Side Response is a scheme where companies are incentivised financially to lower of shift their electricity needs at peak times.

Commercial director Richard Ryan says because the iDSR is fully automated and AI-driven, it unlocks numerous potential revenue streams for companies that embrace it.

The technology has been installed at the SEIC with the support of a grant from Sedgemoor District Council.

“At present, the number of commercial companies is quite low, with SMEs concerned that implementation may require full time management,” Mr Ryan says.

“With building and facilities managers working to tight budgets, the gridIMP system has been designed to provide and affordable way for companies to benefit for the DSR scheme.

“As the volume of data collected by the gridIMP Hub grows, the system will increasingly enable full, intelligent automation of DSR, removing the burden placed on management teams.”

Ben Powis, SEIC director, is backing the initiative and says the integration of the gridIMP system aligns with the centre’s goal of supporting the development of the growing low carbon energy sector.

Installation of the gridIMP Hub was completed within two days, and the system is now fully integrated with all existing monitoring and control systems, with early data showing identified efficiency gains.

Mr Powis said: “As an organisation with a focus on the energy sector, we have been aware for some time of the opportunities presented by DSR.

“Working with gridIMP has shown us just how easily this sophisticated technology can be integrated into our existing Building Management System.

“The initial results have been promising, and we’re looking forward to seeing how the system responds as it continues to learn about our energy usage patterns.”

Mr Ryan added: “Alongside our other projects in the South West, this installation is enabling us to learn a great deal about energy usage patterns for SMEs, and the potential for an automated approach to help businesses overcome traditional barriers to improving energy efficiency.”