Tool update: DNO tool

Whether you work in the energy sector or are a developer exploring the feasibility of connecting new projects to the National Grid - our DNO tool is an invaluable resource you need to be using.

April 24, 2024

From scoping out grid connections for a new solar array or wind farm - to assessing whether a local power network can support the development of 1,000 new homes or apartments - understanding energy infrastructure should be a crucial step in your development workflow.

Figuring out how far the nearest substation is, or the capacity of surrounding power lines can make or break the feasibility of a project. So knowing these factors at the site due diligence stage can prove extremely useful and save countless hours of manual searching.

Like most of the data we process at Searchland - being able to access this information isn’t new. Often it's available in disparate bundles from DNOs or centralised sources - but difficult to navigate and assess at scale.

A one stop shop for comprehensive DNO data

That’s where the Searchland magic begins. We’ve collected, enhanced and repackaged all the key data you need from the National Grid and Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) across the UK and created a tool that answers all your energy questions.

This isn’t simply a case of redrawing substations and power lines from OpenStreetMap.

We’ve gathered data directly from DNOs using Network Availability Heat Maps to produce RAG ratings to help indicate where network capacity already exists to connect new large-scale generation and demand without requiring network reinforcement. This traffic light system provides a high-level overview signalling whether the network is operating at or below current limits - and can help you understand the potential capacity remaining for new connections.

DNO tool in Searchland - showing substation data
DNO tool in Searchland - showing the data relating to Almondsbury substation

Tool update: DNO tool

Our updated DNO tool brings even more detailed insights that help speed up your site sourcing and assessment processes.

Here’s what it can do:

  • Comprehensive, interactive and regularly updated mapping of substations, towers and cables across England, Wales and Scotland - powered by data directly from DNOs.
  • Detailed insights on substations including DNO, voltage, voltage group, demand headroom and generation headroom.
  • Substation RAG rating for demand and generation headroom - based on data from DNO Network Availability Heat Maps.
  • A powerful, customisable search filter to locate substations, towers and lines based on a range of criteria including RAG rating, voltage and voltage group.
  • Colour-coded, interactive power lines- differentiating extra high, high, medium, and low voltage cables.

It's an exciting time for energy projects in the UK, and we’re looking forward to seeing how this tool can help expedite site sourcing and site acquisition. If you think this would be a helpful addition to your development toolkit get in touch and we would be thrilled to show you how it works.

July 9, 2024

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