The Chief Executives’ Club at Queen’s together with Engineers Ireland are delighted to host the 2023 lecture by Professor Keith Bell, University of Strathclyde. The event, in association with the Institution of Engineering and Technology will take place in Riddel Hall, Belfast.
‘A great wind is blowing, and that gives you either imagination or a headache.’ Security of supply in a low carbon energy system.
A transition of the energy system to a low carbon one is an essential part of the wider economy’s transition to net zero. That economy will benefit from the very low cost of new renewable generation and reduced dependency on imports of fossil fuels. But can an energy system dominated by weather-dependent renewables really meet society’s need for reliable supplies of energy?
This talk addresses some of the main challenges in ensuring security of supply in a renewables-dominated energy system, from ensuring stable responses to faults to filling in gaps in production during ‘Dunkelflaute’. It looks at use of models and data in system operation and planning and the need for ‘system thinking’ to ensure that the various elements of what is, in effect, a large, complex socio-techno-economic system fit together with coherence of engineering, markets and public policy. And, finally, it compares UK and Northern Ireland energy strategies and the extent to which clear directions have been set that lead to low carbon, reliable supplies of energy.
About the Speaker
Keith Bell holds the Scottish Power Chair in Future Power Systems at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. He joined the University in 2005 having previously worked as a university researcher and as a system development engineer with National Grid in England. He is a member of the UK’s Climate Change Committee, a co-Director of the UK Energy Research Centre and is active in CIGRE, the International Council of Large Electric Systems. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and has advised the Scottish, UK and Irish governments and Britain’s energy markets regulator, Ofgem, on electrical energy and power systems issues.
About Sir Bernard Crossland
Sir Bernard Crossland, was one of the UK’s most eminent engineers. He was appointed to the chair of mechanical engineering at Queen’s University Belfast in 1959 by Sir Eric Ashby (later Lord Ashby), a reforming vice-chancellor who, like Crossland, was a passionate believer in the importance of technological education for society. Both shared the view that engineers were often more widely informed than students of the humanities. Crossland once told the professor of history that he possessed – and had read and enjoyed – two of his books, and followed up by asking his colleague whether he owned any books on engineering; the answer did not surprise him.