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We take an ‘open’ approach to innovation at ESB. We’ve a range of partners, as well as cross-business innovation units, technology roadmaps and research and design facilities. We encourage innovative ideas from our people, constantly developing our capabilities. We seek innovation within each of our business units and work with the energy start-up community to enable our goals for a net zero energy future.
ESB Innovating @ X_Site

X_Site is our incubator programme, providing relevant supports for cross value chain ventures to enable innovative projects to develop, grow and scale. The programme supports the development of new innovative projects by fostering exploration, learning and intrapreneurship with a start-up mindset.

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We are collaborating on over 250 innovative projects right across the energy sector to improve performance, reduce cost and develop new sources of revenue in line with our Net Zero by 2040 ambition.
Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint video
Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint

Green Atlantic @ Moneypoint is an ambitious programme to transform ESB’s Moneypoint site in County Clare into a green energy hub helping Ireland to become a leader in green energy production and storage.

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Saoirse Wave Energy video
Saoirse Wave Energy

We are exploring the potential of generating energy from Ireland’s abundant wave resources off the Atlantic Coast. This is Project Saoirse - a five MW wave energy development located four kilometres offshore from Co Clare.

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Sub-Sea Habitat Cable Repair video
Sub-Sea Habitat Cable Repair

Our engineers have developed an innovative technology to carry out jointing repairs to sub-sea electricity cables enabling cable repair to be undertaken while the cable remains in-situ on the sea-bed.

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Our Innovation and Digital Programmes


Our bespoke programme enables all staff across ESB to submit innovative ideas that have the potential to develop into future businesses. Five business opportunities are selected annually from the many ideas submitted for further development work supported by a structured incubator process with world-leading external mentors based in Dogpatch Labs, Dublin.

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Our Innovation Academy

Our academy is designed to build competency in customer centric innovation across the group to support delivery of our Net Zero strategy. The programme is run in conjunction with UCD Innovation Academy and is delivered through a highly experiential and practical, action-based learning process built around the four pillars of creativity, collaboration, curiosity and communication.

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Free Electrons Programme video
Free Electrons Programme

We are a founding member of Free Electrons, the world's leading programme connecting start-ups with global energy utilities to deliver cutting edge solutions and co-create the future of energy.

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Eco Partner Platorm

Our digital eco system platform is our home for external collaboration and innovation, allowing us to stimulate fresh thinking while doing safe innovation at speed, and enhance our ability to solve challenges in a digital world.

Digital Accelerator

Our digital accelerator team focuses on developing new business opportunities and solving challenges through deploying digital solutions in an agile manner.

Emerging Technology and Research and Development

We engage with external stakeholders, technology developers and consultants, energy start-ups, research organisations and staff across ESB to analyse and assess emerging technologies across power generation, flexibility, cross - energy and cross industry. Emerging technology is assessed under a range of criteria including technology readiness levels, commercialisation prospects, key market insights and our interaction with each technology.

Our Emerging Technology Insights Report

Our report analyses 24 different technologies across power generation, storage and flexibility, hydrogen, CCUS, empowered customer and digital technologies, assessing each of these technologies according to technology, commercialisation, our own activities and policy.

Emerging Technology Insights 2023
PDF | 10MB

Innovation across our businesses

All business units across our group have an innovation mandate with respective projects managed and delivered within each area. The central innovation team provides support for cross business unit opportunities, leads key innovation programmes and ensures alignment and co-ordination of innovation activities.

Please see details of ESB Networks Innovation strategy here and Northern Ireland Electricity Networks innovation strategy here.