Gas System Flexibility

Why is System Flexibility Important?

System Flexibility can be broken down into three key areas:

  • The ability of the network to cater for daily supply and demand profiles and imbalances through variations in system linepack and pressures. Linepack is the volume of gas stored within a network, network section, or individual pipe. It can be calculated from the pipe volumes, pressures and gas characteristics. Potential diurnal storage is the difference between maximum linepack (which is limited by maximum system pressures) and minimum linepack (which is limited by minimum system pressures).
  • The ability of the network to cater for supply and demand levels that fall within the 1-in-20 peak demand level but result in network flows in some parts of the network that are higher than the 1-in-20 demand level threshold. This could lead to investment by National Grid, for example in storage or IUK taking gas from the system at high demand levels.
  • The ability of the network to cater for changes in the geographic distribution of supply and demand, which result in changes in the direction and level of gas flow through pipes, compressors and multi-junctions. These changes may require rapid adjustments to the operation of compressors and multi-junctions to handle a different flow direction.

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