Project LEO (Local energy Oxfordshire)


ECI lead: Dr Sarah Darby

Project LEO (Local Energy Oxfordshire) was an ambitious, wide-ranging and innovative energy trial, seeking to accelerate the UK’s transition to a zero-carbon energy system.

The trials aimed to understand how new technologies and services, particularly at the ‘edge’ of the network – closest to the point where people are using energy – can benefit local people, communities, and the energy system.

This cross sector collaborative project is building a broad range of reliable evidence of the technological, market and social conditions needed for a greener, more flexible and fair electricity system. It is also learning what changes need to happen within national and local policy to enable this to happen.

Our work

Our trials

Project LEO ran trials in Oxfordshire to build a broad range of reliable evidence of the technological, market and social conditions needed for a greener, more flexible, and fair electricity system. The trials aimed to improve our understanding of how opportunities can be maximised and unlocked from the transition to a smarter, more flexible electricity system and how households, businesses and communities can realise these benefits.

  • Energy asset trials: Our energy asset trials explored the potential of various energy assets, such as a solar park or battery, to deliver flexible energy.
  • Place based trials: Our Smart and Fair Neighbourhood (SFN) trials demonstrated how flexibility services can sit at the heart of a smarter, low carbon, locally balanced energy system.

Commercial Partners

LEO’s commercial partners are developing new services and platforms to support LEO’s aims and that develop or facilitate new commercial opportunities within a smart local energy system.

Data and mapping

Any future smart energy system will generate and consume numerous different types of data from a variety of sources when operational. Project LEO worked to couple the location of local energy assets (e.g. solar farms and batteries), with the time varying response of both energy generation and demand.

TRANSITION / Market trials

These trials are developing markets and platforms for a new energy system. Providing flexible energy has a commercial value – it can be bought and sold. It is the network operators who buy the energy (except for peer to peer trading) by running flexible energy markets to obtain the energy they need.


  • Scottish and Southern Electricity Network (SSEN) 
  • Low Carbon Hub
  • University of Oxford
  • Oxford City Council
  • Oxfordshire County Council
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • Piclo
  • Nuvve
  • EDF
  • Origami Energy