We have developed local area modelling based on small-n experimental studies, large-n randomised control trials, monitored electricity consumption and longitudinal surveys to test the efficacy of energy efficiency measures and understand their impact on the electricity network operator’s infrastructure..

As an example, the £10.3M Ofgem Low Carbon Network Fund (LCNF) project – Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency’ (SAVE) primarily focused on the Solent region and the key output from the project was the Network Investment Tool: a suite of models to improve the simulation of low-voltage distribution networks, informing future investment strategies of operators across the UK.

The SAVE project created a large-scale, representative sample of households and their electricity consumption. The industry leading sample underpins spatial microsimulation modelling, used to predict residential demand profiles for small geographical areas.

Using data from randomised control trials of behavioural interventions, the model provides demand under ‘baseline’ and ‘intervention’ scenarios to predict response in heterogenous areas or populations, identifying house types based upon a combination of heat source, household size and dwelling size.


Latest updates:

Ensuring statistics have power 2020

Convincing stakeholders to invest in high-quality, statistically robust research has not been an easy task. A further challenge is presented in communicating research findings and how they can be interpreted as actionable evidence. Through a recent project, SERG researchers developed guidance for both creators and users on the design, assessment and interpretation of applied energy research.

SAVE project modelling visualisation 2019

Mapped! Latest results from the SAVE spatial microsimulation model show how the level of residential electricity demand varies by time of day and by place across the Solent region.

The End of the World (Cup) 2018

… for England. We didn’t plan the SAVE household sample recruitment and data collection period to over-lap with the 2018 World Cup but we had no end of fun when it did. We started out with some quick analysis of pick-ups (or not) of power demand during the game against Tunisia on June 18th before moving ...

UK household power demand and #worldcup2018 2018

Author: Ben Anderson (b.anderson@soton.ac.uk, @dataknut) We recently posted a brief analysis of household power demand during the May 2018 Royal Wedding which showed a number of surges and dips associated with events in Windsor. In this post we switch to events in Russia – and specifically the first England game of World Cup 2018 (vs Tunisia).  ...

SAVE: Data sources 2018

The LCNF funded Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project is collecting a range of data on household electricity demand. The data comprises electrical power demand, electrical energy consumption and a range of survey data on a large (n > 3,000) sample of households in the South East of England. Staff and students at the University ...

Super Saturday and spikes in demand 2018

Author: Ben Anderson (b.anderson@soton.ac.uk, @dataknut) A while ago we posted a brief analysis of Christmas Day 2016 which showed that it was a most unusual Sunday. Although there was little evidence of positive  ‘spikes‘ in household electricity demand due to synchronised behaviour, HM The Queen’s TV broadcast appeared to cause a distinct negative spike and there ...

Liveable Cities – Case studies 2018

Alongside the Little Book Series, 9 Case Studies were produced from the Liveable Cities work to showcase the breadth and applicability of the Liveable Cities research to practice and everyday life.

Liveable Cities – Little Book series 2017

Following the roadshows and a successful closing event in the House of Lords, the Liveable Cities – Little Book series are now available online to download as PDF.

Energy Demand & Supply in New Zealand: Early Impressions 2017

It isn’t hard to find similarities between the British Isles and New Zealand.  The traditions derived from the British immigration to the islands (and the South Island in particular) emerge as a common language; as familiar sports at which, for the most part, the Kiwis give us a good thumping; a liking for real ale, ...

SPATIALEC Global Fellowship launches 2017

SERG’s Dr Ben Anderson has just started the outgoing phase of his EU H2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie scheme-funded SPATIALEC Global Fellowship. Based at the University of Otago’s Centre for Sustainability, Ben will initially be working on combining time use and electricity monitoring data from the New Zealand GREEN Grid  project with  New Zealand Census data to produce ...

THERMOSS: Building and district thermal retrofit and management solutions 2017

The THERMOSS project is a response to the 20% primary energy consumption reduction targets set by the 2012 European Energy Efficiency Directive (EED). This calls for effective and wide-scale building heating and cooling systems upgrade strategies. Such strategies will only be successful if they are based upon the right combination of technology innovation and ...

SERG research core to SSEN parliamentary event 2017

SERG’s Dr Ben Anderson presented the SAVE study design and trial period 1 preliminary analysis at Scottish and Southern Energy Network’s Using Energy Efficiency to Defer Network Reinforcement parliamentary event at the Houses of Parliament on November 20th, 2017. With an introduction from Alan Whitehead MP (Shadow Minister (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Energy ...

SAVE: Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency 2017 SAVE: Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency

Investigators: Professor AbuBakr Bahaj, Dr Ben Anderson and Professor Patrick James. Researchers: Dr Tom Rushby, Dr Magesh Nagarajan, Dr Mikey Harper Contact: A.S.Bahaj@soton.ac.uk The Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project was awarded £10 million under the Low Carbon Network (LCN) Fund and was carried out by a multidisciplinary consortium of academics, industry and consultants. The project, led ...

IMPETUS domestic hot water demand model presented at BECC 2017 2017

Dr Despina Manouseli presented a poster on the IMPETUS domestic hot water demand model at the annual Behavior Energy and Climate Conference in Sacramento, California in October 2017. The poster presented a novel, practices-based approach to hot water demand estimation ‘under normal conditions’ using microsimulation to forecast seasonal demand at the household level under various water/energy conservation scenarios. The models suggest that the installation of ...

IMPETUS 'Water Cultures' domestic water demand review published 2017

Full paper: Manouseli, D., Anderson, B. & Nagarajan, M. (2017) Domestic Water Demand During Droughts in Temperate Climates: Synthesising Evidence for an Integrated Framework, Water Resource Management. (Open Access) Abstract: Extreme weather events and variations that alter drought and flood frequency add to these pressures and there is therefore a need to develop evidence-based drought scenarios models for ...

Smart Meter Research Portal/Smart Energy Research Lab 2017

SERG is part of a team led by UCL to deliver the new GB Smart Meter Research Portal (SMRP) via the Smart Energy Research Lab with funding from the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. SMRP will provide a secure, consistent and trusted channel for researchers to access high-resolution smart meter energy consumption data, ...

Modelling on-shore wind turbine locations 2017

SERG PhD student Mikey Harper is working on a number of methods to assess the potential for wind turbine development in the UK. As part of this he has produced a map of on-shore wind turbine planning applications to date and has also developed a model for predicting the likelihood of planning success for future sites. To ...

SERG Researcher Dr Despina Manouseli Presents at "Efficient Use and Management of Water" Conference 2017

The 9th biennial Specialist Conference on “Efficient Use and Management of Water” is held every two years in a different location around the world, has been the flagship water efficiency conference for the International Water Association (IWA). Efficient2017 was an opportunity for water efficiency professionals from all over the world to meet each other, network, and ...

Early SAVE results feature at project open days 2017

SERG’s Dr Tom Rushby gave a summary of early SAVE project results at two SAVE ‘Open Days’ on the 10th & 11th of May 2017. The events, which were lead by SSEN but hosted by the University, consisted of a series of short talks and facilitated discussions intended to help inform the project’s future direction. Tom presented ...

Solar Shaded Car Park Project 2017

This project aims to implement a demonstration programme encompassing an operational research and experimental analysis of how solar photovoltaics can be utilised and maintained as shading components in carports.

Clean Carbon Event Poster: Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) 2017

Solent Achieving Value from Efficiency (SAVE) project poster presented to the ‘Clean Carbon‘ USRG by SERG’s Dr Thomas Rushby, 10th May 2017 References list: EA Technology. Future Load Growth from presentation titled ‘SAVE Project Customer & Network Model Meeting’. 17th February 2015 Newsham, Guy R., and Brent G. Bowker. ‘The Effect of Utility Time-Varying Pricing and Load ...

Early SAVE results feature at University Clean Carbon Event 2017

SERG’s Dr Tom Rushby gave a summary of the SAVE project to members of the University’s ‘Clean Carbon‘ USRG on the 10th May 2017. The event, which featured a keynote from Prof. Jon Gibbins, Director of the UK Carbon Capture and Storage Research Centre (UKCCSRC) on the state of CCS in the UK, consisted of ...

IMPETUS modelling work to be presented at IMA & IWA 2017 conferences 2017

Research results from the NERC-funded IMPETUS project will be presented at two upcoming conferences: the 6th World Congress of the International Microsimulation Association (IMA 2017) at Collegio Carlo Alberto in Moncalieri, Italy in June 2017; the IWA EFFICIENT Conference in Bath, UK in July 2017. The IWA Efficient paper will focus on the first version of the IMPETUS consumer water demand ...

IMPETUS researcher provides input to DEFRA REA 2017

SERG researcher Dr Despoina Manouseli was interviewed recently to provide input to DEFRA’s Rapid Evidence Assessment on “behaviour change approaches to promote household water efficiency”. Despoina gave interviewer Collingwood Environmental Planning an overview of her PhD research on household water efficiency interventions and also drew on her recent IMPETUS work in this area. In particular she highlighted the ...

A Most Unusual Sunday 2017

Author: Ben Anderson (b.anderson@soton.ac.uk, @dataknut) There is often talk in the media about the ‘spikes’ in energy demand caused by breaks in television schedules – when everyone is supposed to jump up and put the kettle on (or whatever). Although these make for good media stories, the largest overall surges are probably to do with cooking ...

Preliminary IMPETUS domestic water demand model results presented at IMA Europe 2016 conference 2016

Dr Ben Anderson and Dr Magesh Nagarajan have presented preliminary results from the IMPETUS project at the 2016 European meeting of the International Microsimulation Association.  The paper described their approach to modeling domestic water demand in England using a synthetic 1000 household dataset and demonstrated the results of an Agent Based Model to project water demand ...

New Census2022 paper published in the Computers, Environment and Urban Systems 2016

“Electricity consumption and household characteristics: Implications for census-taking in a smart metered future” briefly reviews the nature of current and future census taking in the UK before outlining the household characteristics that are to be found in the UK census and which are also known to influence electricity load profiles. The paper then uses the Irish CER ...

SPATIALEC: Marie Skłodowska-Curie EU Global Fellowship 2016

Dr Ben Anderson of the Sustainable Energy Research Group (SERG) at the University of Southampton has been awarded a prestigious three year EU Global Fellowship under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme. The two year outgoing phase of the fellowship will be hosted by the University of Otago’s flagship Centre for Sustainability where Dr Anderson will be embedded in the ongoing ...

UK – China Low Carbon Cities Project 2016

City-wide analysis to propel cities towards resource efficiency and better wellbeing Many cities in the world are putting in place their own robust carbon reduction strategies in response to, or in advance of, leadership from central government. As the powerhouses of economic growth, cities use vast amounts of energy and consume resources from hinterlands that stretch ...

Potential of developing rooftop PV systems on SCC non-domestic buildings 2015

This app shows the results of modelling roof panel PV generation for non-domestic Southampton City Council properties in Southampton, UK. Click on the ‘Large Map’ button to see the full interaction version hosted by ESRI/ArcGIS. The three buttons on the top right corner of the map can be used to “Search”, “Filter”, and “Change basemap”. Results are obtained ...

SERG 'Customer Model Framework' contribution to SAVE published 2015

SERG’s first report for the LCNF funded SAVE project has been published. The report,  “Report 2.1 – SAVE Customer Model Framework Specification“, lays out the applied research context for the SAVE Customer Modelling Framework (SCMF) and describes its key requirements. The report then outlines a microsimulation modelling approach than can meet these requirements and describes its conceptual foundations and method of ...

Impacts of Urban Interventions for the Reinvigoration of Secondary and Tertiary High Streets 2015

The aim of this work is to understand the impact of small-scale urban interventions on declining secondary/tertiary high streets and how this relates to stakeholders’ perceptions and behaviours. The study also investigates the hypothesis that undertaking small-scale interventions assists in generating a collective approach among stakeholders for the regeneration of secondary retail areas.

RENKEI Spring School – University of Southampton Southampton, UK, 22-29 March 2015 2014

Theme: ‘District Energy Supply within Cities’ Date: 22-29 March 2015 Venue: University of Southampton Background RENKEI is the Japanese word for “collaboration” and in this context also stands for Research and Education Network for Knowledge Economy Initiatives. RENKEI is an initiative of six Japanese Universities, six UK Universities and the British Council Japan. The role of RENKEI is to offer a common ...

Liveable Cities second round of surveys online – details for participants 2014

Please follow the links below to complete your survey(s) by Monday the 17th of November if possible. Your ID number is on the e-mail and/or letter that was sent to you recently. Many thanks for your participation. If you have any questions, or if any of your contact details have changed or are incorrect, please ...

SERG wins new funding to model domestic water demand under drought scenarios 2014

SERG has secured funding to model domestic water demand under drought scenarios as part of the new NERC funded ‘IMPETUS‘ project. The project, to be lead by the University of Reading will start in June 2014 and run for 3 years. It is aiming to combine meteorological and hydrological models to produce drought ‘forecasts’ for ...

Exploring the value of transactional energy consumption data 2014

The Exploring the value of transactional energy consumption data project is part of the wider ESRC funded Administrative Data Research Centre for England (ADRC) and will enable information routinely collected by government departments and other agencies, such as tax, education, health and consumption data, to be shared with researchers. 

Using Energy Metering Data to Support Census 2021: A Feasibility Study 2014

The possible demise of the decennial UK Census presents social, policy and commercial researchers with both a challenge and an opportunity. If we are no longer to be restricted to what can be asked in a Census, what kinds of social indicators might we want or be able to produce and when?

Liveable Cities 2013 Liveable cities logo

How do we address energy consumption to meet low carbon targets? How do we address infrastructure ‘lock in’ to improve the carbon performance of the urban environment? How do we engender and embed low carbon pathways and engineering solutions for demand reduction and power generation in cities? Introduction Launched in 2012, Liveable Cities is a five year £6.2m research ...

International Centre for Infrastructure Futures (ICIF) 2013

Compared to many parts of the world, the UK has under-invested in its infrastructure in recent decades. It now faces many challenges in upgrading its infrastructure so that it is appropriate for the social, economic and environmental challenges it will face in the remainder of the 21st century. A key challenge involves taking into account ...

Low Carbon City Strategy 2013

Title: Low Carbon City Strategy Researcher: Yue Wu Supervisors: AbuBakr Bahaj and Luke Blunden Abstract GHG emissions are becoming a global concern. The UK has legally bound a CO2 emission reduction target that by 2050 at least 80% of GHG emission shall be reduced based on the emission level of 1990. Consequently, the local authorities also published their own ...

Transforming typical hourly simulation weather data files to represent urban locations 2013 Transforming typical hourly simulation weather data files to represent urban locations

Title: Micro climate adapted localised weather data generation: Implications to the energy consumption of buildings and sustainable design of cities Researcher: Leonidas Bourikas Supervisors: Patrick A.B. James & AbuBakr S. Bahaj Abstract This thesis has investigated methodologies for the adaptation of airport based simulation weather files to replicate the local micro climate. The objective of this thesis is to propose a simple method for the generation ...

Census 2022: Transforming Small Area Socio-Economic Indicators through ‘Big Data’ 2013

Census 2022: Transforming Small Area Socio-Economic Indicators through ‘Big Data’ is a project funded by the ESRC Transformative Research 2012/2013. Investigators: Dr Ben Anderson, Dr Patrick James & Prof. ‘Bakr Bahaj Contact: b.anderson@southampton.ac.uk The possible demise of the decennial UK Census presents social, policy and commercial researchers with both a challenge and an opportunity: The challenge is to transform ‘census-taking’ ...

DEMAND: Dynamics of Energy, Mobility and Demand 2013

DEMAND: Dynamics of Energy, Mobility and Demand is one of 5 RCUK End User Energy Demand Research Centres and is sponsored by EPSRC/ESRC with support from partners EDF-Energy, Transport for London and the International Energy Agency. The Centre is led by the Universities of Lancaster & Leeds and besides Southampton also involves researchers from Aberdeen, Reading, Birmingham, UCL, ...

The role of community-based initiatives in energy saving 2011

This ESRC-funded 4 year year study is assessing the impact of community greening groups on a roll out program insulation upgrades in privately owned housing. The project is led by Prof. Graham Smith, School of Social Sciences, University of Westminster.

Assessment of Urban Microgeneration Solutions 2009

The group’s research is looking at existing housing developments from the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and 2000s to determine the scope and potential impact of microgeneration technologies and energy efficiency measures on the residential scale. Microgeneration options assessed include: Photovoltaics Micro wind power Solar thermal systems for domestic hot water CHP (combined heat and power) at the individual house and small ...

Climate change building impact assessment studies 2009 photo of haphazard installation of split aircon units in a tower block

Climate change is one of the largest threats both for the global economy and the local community. It is predicted that, by 2100, average temperatures could rise as much as six degrees Celsius. The UK is anticipated to become hotter and drier in summer and milder and wetter in winter even under low carbon emissions ...

Environmental Building Monitoring 2007 Internal temperature on north and south sides of office building

Several University of Southampton case study buildings of different age and state of repair have been monitored over longer time periods looking at environmental parameters such as temperature, relative humidity and carbon dioxide concentration. Measurements were made at five minute intervals over several weeks for each building. The scope of these studies was to identify ...

Building Refurbishment 2006 1960s building in need of refurbishment

In industrialised countries building refurbishment is generally considered to be vital in order to achieve major carbon emission reductions in the built environment. At high latitudes the largest single consumer of energy in buildings continues to be space heating required for creating comfortable indoor conditions. For example, a typical 3 bedroom UK house has, on ...

Ventilation Behaviour in Relation to Carbon Dioxide Concentration and Air Temperature 2006 Carbon dioxide monitoring data

The carbon dioxide concentration levels normally observed in indoor environments range from 350 to 2,500 ppm and are typically between 500 and 1,500 ppm. Current literature suggests that a building’s carbon dioxide concentration can be seen as an indicator for both volatile organic component (VOC) concentration and general indoor air quality. However, the potential to ...

Climate Change Implications for the Urban Environment 2005 graph of summer temperature in the South of the UK vs time

Human-made emissions be it from buildings, business, agriculture or transport are now commonly accepted to be the main cause of the global warming trend which is currently being experienced. The Sustainable Energy Research Group is conducting research on climate change issues by assessing future climate impacts in particular in terms of the future performance of buildings. ...