Blog: Facilitating access to good energy data

08 Jun 2018

The importance of access to high quality data for the UK energy research and development sector cannot be underestimated. Researchers and innovators need easy access to high quality data – data which can be easily located, down-loaded, understood, and subsequently utilised. 

Energy data is being generated at an unprecedented rate, and whilst there is a wealth of information and data on the internet, sifting through this to find relevant, high quality material is not a trivial task.

The Energy Knowledge eXchangeTM

The new Energy Knowledge eXchangeTM created by the Energy Systems Catapult with significant input from several other bodies, including UKERC, now links many different information platforms. When searching for information and data, users can opt to be shown not only be standard results gathered from the platform they are using, but also “related links” on other linked platforms. This system, launched this week, will ensure that data centres and users are able to build and share knowledge, collaborate more effectively and maximise the value obtained from the data currently stored.

Individuals entering a new energy research area will be able to quickly understand what research has already been undertaken, accessing relevant news items and reports. In the coming months it is planned to extend the system to include details of funding opportunities and also events.

The Energy Data Centre

At inception of UKERC in 2004, it was quickly realised gathering information about the UK’s energy research and development activities was vital. Ensuring that energy professionals (in academia, industry and policy) could obtain the information about the whole energy system they require. The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), one of UKERC’s founding organisations was therefore invited to develop an online resource consolidating relevant energy information, which became the Energy Data Centre. In the intervening years the Energy Data Centre has evolved – initially there was an emphasis on surveying the energy research scene, whereas more recently the focus has been on the curation, and signposting of research data, something that EKXTM will certainly facilitate.

New data

It is expected that the EKX will grow and evolve over time. With resources being continually updated by existing stakeholders, and new partners anticipated over the coming months, the range and knowledge shared through the service is anticipated to increase.

The Energy Data Centre attracts deposits from both academic and non-academic sources. SSE have recently deposited data from their £30M Low Carbon Network Fund (LCNF) “New Thames Valley Vision” project, and the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) are currently depositing not only all the data collected by projects they have funded, but also all their publications and final project reports.

Further information and links
  • Try EKXTM

EKX signposts can be found across thousands of web pages and have been delivered in partnership with industry stakeholders including the Energy Networks Association, UK Energy Research Centre, Energy Data Centre, the Institution of Engineering and Technology and the Energy Information Centre (EIC).

You can try EKXTM by visiting the search page, type in your key words, or try one of the starter links included on the page. If you use Chrome/Firefox you can also download the browser extension.

  • Contact the Energy Data Centre

If you are working on a project and would like to find out if your data is eligible for storage, or you would like more information, get in touch with the Energy Data Centre.