This project aims at the increase of penetration of microgeneration in electrical networks through the exploitation and extension of the Microgrids concept, involving the investigation of alternative microgenerator control strategies and alternative network designs, development of new tools for multi-microgrids management operation (involving Distribution Management System architectures and new software adaptation) and standardisation of technical and commercial protocols. In all this development the Microgrids concept plays a key role.
From the customer point of view, Microgrids provide both thermal and electricity needs, and in addition enhance local reliability, reduce emissions, improve power quality by supporting voltage and reducing voltage dips, and potentially lower costs of energy supply. From the Utility point of view, the application of distributed energy sources can potentially reduce the demand for distribution and transmission facilities.
Microgrids operate mostly interconnected to the Medium Voltage Distribution network, but they can also be operated isolated from the main grid, in case of faults in the upstream network.
The objectives of the proposal are:
- Investigation of new micro source, storage and load controllers to provide efficient operation of Microgrids .
- Development of alternative control strategies (centralised versus decentralised)
- Alternative Network designs
- Technical and commercial integration of Multi-Microgrids
- Field trials of alternative control and management strategies
- Standardisation of technical and commercial protocols and hardware
- Impact on power system operation
- Impact on the development of electricity network infrastructures
- Experimental validation of Microgrid architectures and interconnected and islanded mode, as well as, during transition.
- Development and experimental validation of alternative control concepts and algorithms in actual Microgrids.
- Development and testing of Distributed Generation and Load Intelligent Controllers (power electronic interfaces).
- Development and testing of storage technology systems, able to support Microgrid operation during transition to islanded mode.
- Development of advanced protection hardware and algorithms, as well as solid state network components of Microgrids
- Development of control and management algorithms for their effective operation and for interfacing them with the upstream Distribution Management system.
- Quantified evaluation of the Microgrids effects on Power System operation at regional, national and projected EU level.
- Quantified evaluation of the Microgrids effects on Power System expansion planning at regional, national and projected EU level.