Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks Leverages Opus One DERMS® to Simulate the Economic Impacts of Flexibility Markets


Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN)




As a joint initiative between the governments of the UK and Canada, Project MERLIN (Modeling the Economic Reactions Linking Individual Networks) seeks to facilitate the move to a smart grid architecture by developing and testing dynamic approaches to power system economics and accelerate the implementation of smart technologies between the two countries within the energy industry.


The Opus One DERMS® software solution implemented for this project is comprised of two components: Opus One DERMS ®Analytics and Opus One DERMS ®Markets.

Opus One DERMS Analytics is a software which enables network planning and visibility, and was deployed in project MERLIN to:

  • Simulate scenarios that reflect long-term forecast loading conditions up to 15 years out for the network and simulate performance with uncontrolled vs. controlled assets.
  • Understand how optimized asset control is beneficial for operational objectives by generating dispatch schedules that reflect the optimized utilization of flexible resources to support SSEN constraint management activities in the future
  • Capture costs associated with traditional solutions to reinforce future grid constraints as well as market participation costs associated with dispatching flexible services to support grid reinforcement and defer traditional upgrades
  • Compare the costs of traditional poles and wires solutions and flexible dispatch solutions to deliver a secure and reliable grid under different scenarios

Opus One DERMS Markets tool enables the simulation and operation of distribution level flexibility markets. Opus One DERMS Markets tool was deployed on two platforms (the Distribution System Platform used by the DSO, and the Market Participant Interface used by aggregators) to:

  • Simulate how a market would operate full impedance network model
  • Dispatch flexibility to minimize the cost to resolve constraints based on SSEN determined DER deployment scenarios
  • Allow the DSO/market operator to run a flexibility market for various services (e.g. congestion management, outage management, offsetting)


One of the key outcomes of the project is to develop learnings and tools that will allow planners to pivot away from worst case scenario assessments and towards an approach that captures the economic and technical details of operational realities within planning. These realities include the assessment of the economic and technical viability of flexibility services and the impact on their real time operation against traditional solutions.

Another exciting outcome is that SSEN and Opus One are collaborating on the operation of flexibility markets through the follow-on work in Project TRANSITION. TRANSITION will take the foundation developed in MERLIN from trial operation to real flexibility markets.