Cloud-edge hosted digital twins for coordinated control of distributed energy resources

Han, Jiaxuan and Hong, Qiteng and Syed, Mazheruddin H. and Khan, Md Asif Uddin and Yang, Guangya and Burt, Graeme and Booth, Campbell (2023) Cloud-edge hosted digital twins for coordinated control of distributed energy resources. IEEE Transactions on Cloud Computing, 11 (2). pp. 1242-1256. ISSN 2168-7161 (

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This paper presents a novel approach for realizing coordinated control of Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) based on cloud-hosted and edge-hosted digital twins (DTs) of DERs. DERs are playing an increasingly important role in supporting the frequency regulation of power systems with massive integration of renewable resources. However, due to the significant differences in DERs' capability and characteristics, individual and un-coordinated responses from DERs could lead to a less effective overall response with undesirable traits, e.g. slow response, severe overshoots, etc. Therefore, the coordination of DERs is critical to ensure the desirable aggregated overall response. A major shortcoming of conventional centralized or distributed approaches is their significant reliance on real-time communications. This paper addresses the challenges by the application of DTs that can be hosted in the cloud for the centralized control approach and the edge for the distributed approach to minimize the need for real-time communications, while being able to achieve the overall coordination among DERs. The proposed DT-based coordinated control is validated using a realistic real-time simulation test setup, and the results demonstrate that the DT-based coordinated control can significantly improve the aggregated DERs' response, thus offering effective support to the grid during contingency events.