With power resilience, fluctuating energy demand and a move toward sustainable power sources very much a hot topic at the moment, Crestchic loadbanks is pleased to be working with the University of Chester’s Energy Centre, providing the loadbanks required to support research into alternative power sources,

Located at Thornton Science Park in Cheshire, the 90,000m2 Energy Centre is one of the largest and most advanced energy research hubs in Europe. The centre was opened in 2017, with the mission of promoting growth and acceleration in the development and exploitation of technologies for the energy market and providing a flexible place where industry and academia come together to innovate, develop and demonstrate new intelligent energy technologies.

The centre includes a state of the art microgrid. Essentially a local energy grid with control capability, the microgrid offers the energy centre the capability to operate autonomously from the national grid, facilitating product development, evaluation and testing of new and innovative energy technology. To ensure that the power systems – which include testing of photovoltaic solar cells, energy storage and thermal storage and load balancing solutions – are properly evaluated, it was vital that the research facility had testing equipment in situ.

Working with Crestchic, the world’s leading supplier of loadbanks, the Energy Centre installed loadbanks to evaluate how the developing power systems adapt to fluctuations in load. In doing so, the centre had the testing capability to be able to evaluate and demonstrate innovative energy technology in real-world load conditions. In addition to the testing capability, the load banks can also be used for balancing or minimum load purposes. The enables the microgrid to be more stable, using the loadbank to apply an additional load when required and avoiding the kind of power fluctuations that could cause an outage.