Research and development

The volume of research and development (R&D) activities continued to increase during the year under review, amounting to EUR 2.4 (2.4) million. Most of the research activities, 67%, was outsourced to universities, research institutions and other players. Fingrid’s own work mainly consisted of thesis projects (9) and steering of R&D projects. The biggest R&D investment was made in maintenance management of grid assets and grid development (33% of the total expenditure). The second most important target for resources (25%) was the development of the electricity market. The development of system security management received 19% of the expenditure.

The single most extensive project was the development of maintenance management according to a status- and risk-based approach to match new types of equipment and modern measurement and monitoring systems, for example for switchgear. A highly significant set of R&D projects, in terms of impacts, focused on developing the electricity markets and operational models in such a way that smart grid solutions can cost-effectively accomplish adequate flexibility in the power system to maintain a good level of system security. Both of these programmes will continue in the coming years.

R&D co-operation is important in terms of utilising synergies and benefiting from a broader base of expertise. Fingrid participates in a joint European project called MIGRATE, which mainly focuses on the inertia calculation and forecasting methodology for power systems. In the Nordic arena, Fingrid participates in several joint R&D projects of the Nordic TSOs to develop areas such as load modelling and inertia control in the Nordic power system. One of the joint projects at the national level, the FLEXe project (Tekes) focusing on flexibility capabilities in the Finnish power system, was completed in 2017. Fingrid additionally participates in the EL-TRAN project (Academy of Finland) to create a roadmap towards a resource-efficient power system. Fingrid also independently finances several industry projects, either directly or through systems such as the Finnish Energy organisation’s Electricity Research Pool.