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Modelling the impact of micro generation on the electrical distribution system

Kelly, Nick and Galloway, Stuart and Elders, Ian and Tumilty, Ryan and Burt, Graeme (2008) Modelling the impact of micro generation on the electrical distribution system. In: Micro-Cogen 2008, 1st International Conference on Micro-Cogeneration Technologies and Applications, 2008-04-29 - 2008-05-01.

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Abstract

In the UK and elsewhere there is considerable debate as to the future form of the electricity distribution system. The coming years will see a rise in the amount of micro-generation connected to the network at low voltages and the emergence of highly-distributed power systems (HDPS). However, there is considerable uncertainty as to the impact that this micro-generation will have on the quality of power supplied to our homesor to the stability of the electricity system as a whole. To address these engineering challenges the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is funding a three year research programme featuring a multi-disciplinary team from a variety of UK Universities: Supergen HDPS. This paper documents one piece of work emerging from the consortium, where a multi-tool approach is used to analyse the impact of micro-generation on the electricity system. This used a building simulation tool to produce electrical generation profiles for domestic cogeneration device models. These, along with profiles produced for other micro-generation technology models and electrical load profiles are then replicated and aggregated using a customised statistical approach. The profiles were then used as boundary conditions for a set of electrical load flow simulations on a model of a section of real network, where the number of microgenerators was varied according to different scenarios for the future of the UK electricity grid. The results indicate that a significant number of micro-generation devices can be accommodated before any power quality problems arise, however this is dependent upon maintaining a robust central grid.