ESB Real Time Visualisation — Charting a Sustainable Future
STUDIO / DESIGNER
Creative Practice & Collaboration
Peter Delaney (Director of Product & Technology)
Mariana Spagnuolo (UX Lead)
Diego Tardioli (UI Lead)
Sean Taylor (Director of Design & Innovation)
Anna Doran (ESB Data Design)
Dermot O’Shea (Digital Strategy)
Design Challenge and Design Ideas
Every day across Ireland and the UK, ESB Generation and Trading manage, monitor and trade energy from hydro stations, thermal stations and wind farms. Station Managers would gather data using a variety of interfaces and tools, and then aggregate the information before making decisions.
The data was not available in real-time, graphs and dashboards were in many different formats thus time-consuming to analyse as a whole.
WONDR was tasked with improving operational and financial efficiencies by developing a user-friendly, centralised data visualisation hub that facilitated collaboration, consolidated data sources, enabled data-driven business decisions, and responded to operational and commercial challenges.
Resulting in ‘The ESB Real-Time Visualisation (RTV) application’ a dashboard of complex data from several sources that acts as a single source of truth. Facilitating the management of energy generation and trading allows ESB to make quick and informed decisions all in one app.
How the brief was fulfilled
WONDR developed a user-friendly, centralised go-to data visualisation hub for ESB Generation Trading last year. Working closely with all stakeholders, plant managers and traders to scope user, technology, and business requirements in order to establish clear processes, KPIs, and deliverables. The team was purposely kept tight and focused to ensure a high level of understanding and continuity. This year WONDR implemented new updates to increase the focus on sustainability and renewable resources.
Agile methodology was employed to deliver UX and UI sprints based on MVP release stories. User testing with actual plant managers, engineers, traders, and lead stakeholders validated ideas before building them.
This is the first time the ESB Generation & Trading business have been able to view all their data sources in a centralised dashboard with visual representations of that data.
There are various types of design features doing the heavy lifting to engage and inform the users. WONDR used different types of graphs according to data type, and a simple-to-navigate map with quick alerts for stations across Ireland and the UK. By designing in dark mode, the application saves even more energy and is looking toward a more sustainable future.
Viewing this data in real-time allows Station Managers to make quick decisions, which ultimately leads to a saving of monetary, time, and people resources. Ultimately, the tool allows engineers to utilise energy as efficiently as possible.
The process took about 18 months from initial research to launch. The tool is used by specialised engineers as well as C-suite executives on a daily basis. The significant cost and energy savings have resulted in the design and integration of several downstream data sources into the RTV application.
The objective behind the design and development of the entire application was to facilitate the generation and trading of sustainable energy sources. The data sources are the numerous ESB hydro stations, thermal stations and wind farms around Ireland and the UK. By quickly identifying disruptions to energy production like a faulty line or leak, the stations can course correct and make decisions.
The clarity, streamlining and presentation of complex data from multiple sources in simple yet informative visualisations allows for a friendly and quick read. Dark mode to save on energy is a really simple but effective design feature that makes an impact on our journey towards a more sustainable future."