Frequency containment reserves (FCR products)

Frequency Containment Reserve for Normal Operation (FCR-N) and Frequency Containment Reserve for Disturbances (FCR-D) are active power reserves that are automatically controlled based on the frequency deviation. Their purpose is to contain the frequency during normal operation and disturbances. FCR-N aims to keep the frequency within the standard frequency range of 49,9 Hz to 50,1 Hz. FCR-D aims to limit the frequency deviation to 49,5 Hz or 50,5 Hz when the frequency goes outside the standard range.
FCR-N is a symmetrical product that must be capable of both up- and downregulation. Upregulation means increasing power production or decreasing consumption. Downregulation means decreasing power production or increasing consumption. FCR-D is divided in separate up- and downregulation products. 
Technical requirements

Reserve resources providing FCR-N or FCR-D must meet the technical requirements. Before participating in the reserve markets, prequalification tests must be performed to show that the requirements are fulfilled. The activation of FCR-N and FCR-D is based on automatic local control. Fingrid does not send control signals. The Reserve Unit must have a controller that adjusts the power based on frequency measurement when the unit participates in the maintenance of the reserve.

The technical requirements are briefly presented in the table below. A full description of the requirements is available in "Technical requirements and prequalification process of FCR" (available under Attachments on this page).


Minimum size

Full activation time


Frequency Containment Reserve for Normal Operation (FCR-N)

0,1 MW

in 3 min after frequency step change of ± 0,1 Hz

Dead band max ±0,01 Hz

Frequency Containment Reserve for Disturbances, Upwards (FCR-D up) 

1 MW

5 s / 50 %

30 s / 100 %,

after a stepwise frequency change from 49,9 Hz to 49,5 Hz


Frequency Containment Reserve for Disturbances, Downwards (FCR-D down)

1 MW

5 s / 50 %

30 s / 100 %,

after a stepwise frequency change from 50,1 Hz to 50,5 Hz



Fingrid purchases Frequency Containment Reserves (FCR-N and FCR-D) from the domestic yearly and hourly markets, the Russian* and Estonian HVDC links and other Nordic countries.

A reserve provider may offer capacity, that is situated in Finland and fulfills the reserve requirements, to the yearly and/or hourly market. Both markets have the same technical requirements, and both markets trade in FCR-N, FCR-D up and FCR-D down separately. The principle differences between the yearly and hourly markets are described in the table below:

Yearly market

Hourly market

Bidding competition organised once a year (autumn).

A reserve provider can participate in the hourly market by making a separate agreement with Fingrid. This does not require making a yearly agreement.​

In the middle of a contractual period, it is not possible to enter by making a yearly agreement for reserve maintenance.

Possible to enter the hourly market even in the middle of the year.

The amount based on reserve plans is bought in total.​

TSO buys only required amount of reserve.

Reserve plans must be submitted the previous day by 6 pm (EET).

Bids for the hours in the following 24-hour period must be submitted by 6.30 pm (EET).

The reserve provider is obliged to maintain the reserve it sells to the yearly market within the framework of its free capacity after day-ahead market.

​Reserve providers may submit daily offers for their reserve capacity. A provider that has a yearly agreement may participate in the hourly market only if it has supplied the reserve amount specified in the yearly agreement in full.

Fixed price is valid throughout the year. This is set based on the most expensive bid approved for the yearly market.

​Payment is set based on the most expensive bid used separately for each hour.


The yearly and hourly market agreements for FCR-N and FCR-D that Fingrid concludes with all the parties are identical in terms of their conditions, content and payments.  

*The procurement from Russia has been stopped for the time being