Long-term electroencephalographic (EEG) recordings are important in the presurgical evaluation of refractory partial epilepsy for the delineation of the ictal onset zones. In this paper, we introduce a new concept for an automatic, fast, and objective localisation of the ictal onset zone in ictal EEG recordings. Canonical decomposition of ictal EEG decomposes the EEG in atoms. One or more atoms are related to the seizure activity. A single dipole was then fitted to model the potential distribution of each epileptic atom. In this study, we performed a simulation study in order to estimate the dipole localisation error. Ictal dipole localisation was very accurate, even at low signal-to-noise ratios, was not affected by seizure activity frequency or frequency changes, and was minimally affected by the waveform and depth of the ictal onset zone location. Ictal dipole localisation error using 21 electrodes was around 10.0 mm and improved more than tenfold in the range of 0.5–1.0 mm using 148 channels. In conclusion, our simulation study of canonical decomposition of ictal scalp EEG allowed a robust and accurate localisation of the ictal onset zone.