Innovative smart meter initiative will enable connection of low-carbon technologies to electricity network

Researchers from Loughborough University are developing innovative ways to use smart meter data to help equip the electricity network with low-carbon technologies.

Launched in partnership with National Grid, the SMITN project (Smart Meter Innovations & Test Network) will use data from smart meters to give electricity network planners added information, helping them to manage load when connecting low-carbon technologies like electric vehicle (EV) chargers and heat pumps.

The new smart meter technology will allow National Grid to monitor the quality of power supplied by the low-voltage network. This will help identify hotspots where customers are connecting low-carbon technologies and where extra capacity may be required.

By using this technology to improve network data, National Grid will also be able to devise self-serve tools and simplify the connections process for thousands of customers wanting to connect solar PV, EV chargers and heat pumps.

Loughborough University will be working with data scientists from CGI to design algorithms that identify the cable connections for each customer, calculating the load on each conductor and including the demand and generation from low-carbon technologies.

The researchers will also work with Haysys to develop a verified test network where the customer connections have been independently checked.

The work at Loughborough University will be led by Andrew Urquhart and Murray Thomson from CREST, the Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology, working with project partners CGI, Haysys and GHD.


Notes for editors

Press release reference number: 22/187

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2022 QS World University Rankings – the sixth year running – and University of the Year for Sport by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is ranked 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2023, 10th in the Guardian University League Table 2023 and 11th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’, and in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 over 90% of its research was rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally-excellent’. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.