How Project Nexus will affect your switch
8th May 2017
Gas is about to undertake its biggest upgrade in a generation.
While Project Nexus might sound like a top secret experiment (or a prog rock band), it's actually a huge efficiency boost to how suppliers and network operators share gas meter information.
The changes will make switching faster, billing more accurate, and buying the right amount of gas easier for suppliers.
To do the upgrade, the gas network will temporarily stop all data flows from the 23rd to the 31st of May. There's a 5 day period after this when the network catches up on the lost time, so things won't be fully back to normal until the 6th of June.
This won't affect your gas supply, but it might delay your switch or cancellation.
What are the changes?
1. All gas meters will now send information over the same data network
Not all gas meters were created equal, but the upgrade changes this.
Independent gas transporters (IGTs), originally set up to increase competition in a market dominated by National Grid, don't communicate through the data transfer network like standard gas meters do. Until now, IGT information was shared through spreadsheets, with suppliers updating the data and sending it on again.
After Project Nexus, IGTs will send information the same way as a standard gas meter – through the data network (managed by Xoserve), and without the hassle of manual processing, bringing a uniform approach for all gas meters.
2. Annual usage estimates (AQs) will be updated monthly
Your AQ, or Annual Quantity, is a measure of how much gas we think you'll use. In the past, we could only update your AQ once a year, which meant that if you forgot to send a meter reading, our estimate could be out of sync with your actual usage.
After Project Nexus, your monthly gas readings will automatically calculate your AQ. This means we won't ever need to base your usage on an AQ that's never been updated, or been done so infrequently, provided you send us regular meter readings.
Not only does this mean more accurate and timely billing, but it also makes it easier for us to buy the right amount of gas for you. When we can buy the right amount of gas, we need hedge less, which ultimately makes our prices cheaper for you.
How will these changes affect me?
Any upgrade needs some downtime.
Although Project Nexus won't disrupt your gas supply, it might delay your switch – in some cases, by as much as 14 days. This includes dual fuel customers as we switch electricity at the same time.
Cancellations under the 14 day cooling off period might also be delayed and processed in a different way. Project Nexus overlaps could mean you're already on supply before we can cancel the switch, but if so, we'll arrange for you to be transferred back to your old supplier as soon as possible.
Project Nexus introduces welcome changes to the gas network that were long overdue. Better efficiency lowers the cost of managing the infrastructure that delivers your gas, and better annual estimates makes suppliers more competitive – both of which could see your bills reduce.
A small delay to your switch or cancellation while these important changes take effect is, we hope you'll agree, a small price to pay.
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