National Grid Gas Transmission Network Strategy Solution: NetStrat

BMA worked with National Grid Gas Transmission to develop an advanced systems model of the NTS network using an innovative combination of optimisation and hydraulic modelling approaches to inform future network design. This is enabling NGGT to develop a robust 25-year network strategy, which is resilient in the face of future uncertainty.

National Grid Gas Transmission (NGGT) own, manage and operate the UK high-pressure gas national transmission system (NTS). The NTS is a gas superhighway that connects the UK, balancing supply and demand on a day-to-day basis to make gas available when and where it is needed - providing heat to around 80 per cent of the UK’s 28 million homes.


National Grid Gas Transmission (NGGT) are responsible for ensuring gas is safely and efficiency transported from supply at terminals to meet the required demand around the UK.

The gas transmission network ensures that supply and demand are balanced day-to-day while enabling an effective energy market. Natural gas is a vital part of the UK economy. It is used to produce heat, electricity and is also used as a raw material, e.g. in industry, including in the production of blue hydrogen. Around 84% of the heating and 40% of the electricity in the UK is currently produced using natural gas. The evolution of low and zero-carbon gases will also be critical to achieving the UK’s legislated decarbonisation target, which is to reach net zero by 2050.


Significant uncertainty around future gas supply and demand presents a challenge for long term planning. NGGT must ensure that the gas transmission network, including elements of critical national infrastructure which are an integral part of the UK energy system, are fit for purpose across a huge range of future energy scenarios. Simultaneously, investment in infrastructure and assets should be delivering value for money for end-use customers. Traditional network planning processes and tools such as asset investment planning and hydraulic models, used in isolation, are not fully able to answer these questions. Greater use of optimisation and artificial intelligence are required to empower analysts and decision makers to adequately respond to these challenges, now and in the future.

In response to this challenge, NGGT required a solution which provided rapid, automated analysis of a sufficiently wide and granular range of future energy scenarios to develop a 25-year network strategy, which would be resilient in the face of future uncertainty.

“BMA are an excellent collaboration partner to work with. They have listened to our needs, understood the data that is available and tailored their approach to deliver outstanding results. Their Network Strategy, NetStrat, solution has delivered a step change in our ability to deliver and test network strategy against a wide range of future energy scenarios. This is critical to our ability to ensure that our gas transmission network remains relevant and fit for purpose in the context of a rapidly changing energy system.”

Antony Green

Project Director - Hydrogen, National Grid Gas Transmission


Business Modelling Associates (BMA) developed an advanced systems model of the UK Gas Transmission Network: NetStrat. This uses an innovative combination of optimisation and hydraulic modelling approaches to inform future network design and operation in a single model solution. This combination of optimisation with a hydraulic solver avoids the need for network analysts to manually determine the required compressor, valve and regulator settings or configurations prior to optimisation. The benefit of this is that the whole solution set of configurations and settings is optimised by the systems model. This then allows the end-to-end future energy scenario analysis to be automated and scaled.

NetStrat has enabled a step-change to the way NGGT develop and test their network strategy. The solution can batch test future network designs against a wide range of future energy scenarios to ensure the UK’s national gas transmission system remains fit for purpose in the long-term, despite a rapidly changing and evolving energy landscape.

In addition to informing network investment planning, NetStrat uses artificial intelligence to proactively identify constraints and asset redundancy within the network. This, in turn, enables more strategic, efficient and conscious investment decision-making across the gas transmission network. This gives decision makers the confidence that their investment choices are robust and evidence-based. They also have greater insight into the pathways that will deliver possible energy futures, along with the associated uncertainties and sensitivities. Thus, providing no regrets, least regrets investment options; and beyond.


  • Automation of large-scale scenario analysis, ensuring a robust and least regrets network strategy
  • Proactive identification of network constraints which potentially require investment, ensuring a resilient gas transmission network
  • Identification of candidate assets for decommissioning or repurposing (for example pipelines that can be repurposed for carbon or hydrogen transmission)
  • Quantification of the whole system impact of asset failure and rationalisation, enabling a better understanding of network risk and resilience
  • Challenge current network modelling assumptions by removing human bias in optimisation of compressor fleet and network design and operation
  • Significant reduction of time and effort spent on manual hydraulic modelling, freeing analyst time for more value adding activities

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