BDC

National Grid Set for Demand Spike on Olympic Super Saturday

The National Grid is preparing for a 400MW spike in demand this Saturday (August 13) as people up and down the country tune in to watch a huge night of Olympic action.

The rise in demand is expected for ‘Super Saturday’ as viewers stay up until 3am to watch Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis-Hill and Greg Rutherford go for gold.

The predicted spike in demand is lower than that of the London 2012 Super Saturday but the National Grid has attributed this to the time difference in Rio.

A ‘TV pickup’ occurs when demand for electricity increases during advert breaks or at the conclusion of the UK’s most popular programmes as consumers turn on lights and electrical applicances.

If Andy Murray makes it to the final of the tennis event which begins at 8pm, the National Grid is expecting a 500MW pickup, while a 250MW spike is expected if Team GB’s women’s gymnastics team make the final round.

When Tom Daley claimed his bronze medal on Tuesday night, Britain saw a pickup of around 169MW, however this was much below the expected 350MW spike. When the coverage switched to the gymnastics, a further 50MW increase was seen.

Jeremy Caplin, Energy Forecasting Manager at the National Grid, explained that pickups during this year’s Rio Olympics have been significantly lower than London 2012, which he believes is because of the time difference as the majority of events have been taking place overnight.

Caplin added: “As always our team of experts in the control room are working hard to ensure our predictions are as accurate as possible and we are expecting to see an increase in demand of 200MW overnight during ‘Super Saturday’ as people tune in to watch stars such as Jessica Ennis-Hill and Mo Farah.”

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BDC 309 : Oct 2023