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System operator innovation news and events

We run innovation events to explore new ideas, develop innovation projects, and share our work. Here you will find details of past and upcoming events.

Innovating together

The SO innovation team organises and participates in events throughout the year to create a space for ideation, collaborative project development, and to share the outcomes of our innovation work. 

Upcoming events

16-17 October 2018

Low Carbon Networks Innovation (LCNI) Conference  

International Centre, St Quentin Gate, Telford

LCNI brings together experts from across the energy sector to showcase the latest electricity and gas network innovation projects and technology crucial in supporting the sector’s transition to a low carbon energy future. The Electricity System Operator will showcase its latest achievements and invite you to visit our stand to check them out and learn more about innovating with us.


Past events

28 June 2018

Energy Networks Association dissemination event        

ENA offices, 4 More London Riverside, London

National Grid System Operator will present findings from some of its innovation projects at ENA’s dissemination event, focused on new technologies and commercial evolution. 

22-23 May 2018

Utility Week Live

National Exhibition Centre, North Ave, Marston Green, Birmingham

Visit the SO Innovation team at Stand E49.Learn about our innovation priorities and find out how to collaborate with us. Also check out a virtual reality experience that brings to life concepts like energy system balancing, system inertia and reactive power.


23 March 2018  

Open Innovation Day


Open Innovation Day gave industry and academia an opportunity to co-create innovation projects with experts within National Grid System Operator.

The Innovation team held a competitive open call, reviewed over 120 applications and selected the most promising innovation ideas to be worked up into projects. Eight groups from industry and academia were invited to Open Innovation Day, an intensive one-day project development event, and five of them were selected to further develop project ideas and ultimately apply for NIA funding. 

5-6 March 2018

SO Hackathon:Hack the Demand Curve
(Watch our video)


Hack the Demand Curve brought together 40 people from across the SO to work on three challenges facing different parts of the business:

  1. How to better forecast the future energy implications of new technologies that have few real-world precedents.
  2. How to reimagine our approach to balancing the grid in order to prepare for unknown future extremes.
  3. How to explain challenging concepts and efficiently solicit feedback to enhance the System Operability Framework process.

Three innovation projects are being taken forward that each address one of the challenges outlined above.

26 January 2018

Innovation Day: Open Data API


This Innovation Day explored how data sharing could improve transparency and be applied to yield consumer benefit.

6-7 December, 2017       

Low Carbon Networks Innovation conference


LCNI brought together hundreds of industry experts to share their knowledge and experience as the industry prepares for a low-carbon future. National Grid SO launched a prototype Virtual Reality experience to test how well the technology brought technical concepts to life through interactive game-play. We also shared the midway project results two of our in-flight Network Innovation Competition (NIC) projects, namely the Enhanced Frequency Control Capability project and the Power Potential project.