The European transmission system operators (TSOs) work closely together also to achieve the ambitious goal of the EU to create a European internal electricity market. As one of four German transmission system operators, 50Hertz is involved in several projects and initiatives, not least due to the central location of its grid area. The pan-European activities are coordinated by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) in which 50Hertz is also active.
International transmission lines connect the transmission network of 50Hertz to the transmission grids of other countries. You can learn more about international interconnectors in operation and the latest developments of the projects for expansion and reconstruction here.
In order to ensure the efficient use and safe operation of the transmission system of 50Hertz as part of the European interconnected grid, the cross-border transmission capacities available for international electricity trading are determined according to a defined methodology and made available to the market by way of a transparent and non-discriminatory capacity allocation process.
When it comes to the development of an integrated European internal electricity market 50Hertz closely cooperates with other European TSOs in various projects.
Concerning the implementation of the three Market Network Codes, 50Hertz is active in both the ‘Core’ and ‘Hansa’ Capacity Calculation Regions (CCR) and contributes to the projects IGCC, ‘PICASSO’ and ‘MARI’ for harmonisation of balancing processes across Europe.
50Hertz is part of the Multi-Regional Coupling (MRC), a joint project of transmission system operators and power exchanges, which pursues the Europe-wide introduction of an integrated price coupling for the day-ahead market (“Single Day Ahead Coupling/SDAC”).
Next to this a European cross-border intraday market coupling is currently being set up (Single Intraday coupling/SDIC) based on the XBID (cross-border intraday) project. This European project is set up in several regional sub-projects (Local Implementation Project). 50Hertz is involved in sub-projects LIP 2 and LIP 15.
The European Commission has undertaken to create an European electricity market for all of Europe. Prerequisite for efficient settlement of the growing electricity trade between EU member states is the establishment of binding rules for the entire EU. As a result of the third energy package of the EU and for the further elaboration of Regulation (EC) No 714/2009 on conditions for access to the network for cross-border electricity exchanges, these EU-wide rules have been implemented as so-called ‘Network Codes’ (also called guidelines). The Network Codes were issued by the European Commission as EU Regulations and are therefore legally binding requirements. The objective of the Network Codes is to create technical prerequisites for an efficient and open Euopean internal electricity market.
Market coupling is the process for day-ahead or intraday coupling of bidding zones of one or several Nominated Electricity Market Operators (NEMOs), that are usually power exchanges, into a homogeneous market area. During market coupling, the offers submitted by the market participants to their relevant NEMO are netted by a standard IT-system considering the transmission capacities available between the bidding zones for the corresponding period. As a result, a convergence, or ideally a harmonisation of the electricity prices in the coupled bidding zones as well as an efficient use of the transmission capacities between the coupled bidding zones is achieved.
Within the implementation of the two EU regulations CACM (Regulation (EU) 2015/1222) and FCA (Regulation (EU) 2016/1719), 50Hertz, together with the other European transmission system operators, intensively works on further development of the coordinated calculation and allocation of cross-border transfer capacities. In particular in the short-term timeframes (day-ahead and intraday), basic objective is the introduction of a flow-based capacity calculation and allocation procedure (Flow Based Market Coupling). In justified cases, it may be deviated from this approach in particular regions.
Objective of EU Regulation CACM is the coordination and harmonisation of the capacity calculation as well as allocation of capacity for the cross-border day-ahead and intraday markets. The Regulation also sets out requirements for TSOs regarding cooperation at regional level, at pan-European level and beyond bidding zone borders.
The capacity calculation should be coordinated at least at regional level in order to ensure a reliable capacity calculation and to ensure that optimum capacity is made available to the market. Therefore, a first step towards the implementation of EU Regulation CACM is the definition of the regions where such coordination is necessary. According to Article 2 of Regulation (EU) 2015/1222, these regions are defined as "Capacity Calculation Regions (CCR)" meaning "the geographical area in which a coordinated capacity calculation is applied". The CCRs have been defined on 17/11/2016 by the Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulatory Authorities (ACER) and published under the following link:
Further methods resulting from the implementation of the two EU regulations CACM and FCA possibly requiring the approval of the Federal Network Agency that are to be published pursuant to Article 9 (14) CACM and Article 4 (13) FCA respectively can be found on the information platform of the four German TSOs under the heading "EU Network Codes" or on the websites of the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) to the respective EU regulations CACM and FCA.
To achieve the European Commission's goal of creating a European internal electricity market, the European Commission has introduced an integrated Price Coupling across Europe for day-ahead electricity trading – this is called the Single Day Ahead Coupling (SDAC).
In order to create a European internal electricity intraday market, power exchanges and transmission system operators from twelve countries have launched an initiative called “XBID Market Project”. The purpose of the XBID Market Project is to enable continuous cross-border trade and to increase the efficiency of intraday trading in general through a single cross-border intraday market in Europe. The XBIB project is currently developing into the Single Intraday Coupling (SIDC).
Day-ahead: in the context of electricity trading, day-ahead means the trade of electricity for the next day using the available transmission capacities. Electricity can be traded for individual or all 24 hours of the following day at any given time on any given day.
Intraday: this means the trading of electricity to be supplied on the day itself. In principle, this trading can take place both continuously and at different trading times, in each case using the available transmission capacity. Electricity can still be traded until shortly before the time of delivery.