Flextool 2021/22 Project Dates: January 2021 - June 2023
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PROJECT OBJECTIVE

Countries exploring ways to ramp up solar and wind energy on their power grids should first conduct thorough flexibility assessments. The IRENA FlexTool performs power system flexibility assessments based on national capacity investment plans and forecasts.

FlexTool assessments reflect full power system dispatch and offer a detailed view of options for flexible generation, demand-side flexibility and energy storage, alongside sector-coupling technologies such as power-to-heat, electric vehicles and hydrogen production through electrolysis.

The freely accessible, user-friendly FlexTool can analyse system operations using a time resolution aligned with real-world system challenges – a resolution of an hour or less in the case of variable renewable energy sources. It also provides least-cost optimisation of the generation mix combined with flexibility solutions for the grid, storage, demand-side response and sector coupling.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The FlexTool is data-driven and follows a relatively broad, general model structure. The user’s initial data largely determines what the model does. The inputs required for a FlexTool simulation include demand, the generation mix, hydrological data, time series for variable renewable sources, interconnections and fuel costs. Transmission data can be divided into separate nodes to reflect real-word power system characteristics.

The FlexTool was developed with the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd, with the aim of assisting IRENA members to make a relatively quick yet thorough assessment of potential flexibility gaps, highlighting the most cost-effective mix of solutions to fill such gaps. It is currently the only publicly and freely available (open-source) tool that accommodates both capacity expansion and dispatch variables with a focus on power system flexibility.


SECTORS OR AREAS OF WORK
  1. Training/capacity building

Region/Location

BUDGET

USD 1,000,000

DONORS (OR FUNDING /CONTRIBUTING ORGANIZATIONS)
  1. IRENA - The International Renewable Energy Agency
IMPLEMENTING AGENCY OR AGENCIES

SUPPORT TYPE
BUDGET

USD 1,000,000

DONORS (OR FUNDING /CONTRIBUTING ORGANIZATIONS)
  1. IRENA - The International Renewable Energy Agency
IMPLEMENTING AGENCY OR AGENCIES

SUPPORT TYPE