Future Grids: challenges and opportunities

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1 Future Grids: challenges and opportunities Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione, A. Flammini, AA

2 Energy Distribution Today It is common believe that AC distribution is the most economic approach: Transformers as key technology It is more convenient to concentrate generation in large power plants Large Power Plants can be placed possibly away from cities Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

3 Today Energy Grid Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

4 Future Energy Grid Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

5 Characteristics of Present and Future Energy Grids Present Future Generation highly concentrated System is quasi-static Generation is totally under control Load are statistically predictable Flow of energy from transmission to distribution is unidirectional Distribution is a totally passive system More distributed generation Renewable sources are not totally predictable (uncertainty) and not under our control Power injection happens also at distribution level The system is characterized by higher dynamics, e.g. wind puff Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

6 Summarizing the changes Growing presence of renewable sources Solar Wind Waves Geothermal Growing attentions at the environment even for what it concerns the infrastructures It is becoming less and less likely that new transmission lines will be built Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

7 Solar Power Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

8 A large solar power plant in Crete Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

9 Photovoltaic Home Systems 1. PV Panels 2. Switching Gear 3. DC Cabling 4. Inverter 5. Energy Meters Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

10 Wind Energy Systems Now a mature technology Widely Spread in Germany Off-shore windfarms Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

11 Wave Energy Total Estimated: Shoreline 1 TW Offshore 10 TW Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

12 Geothermal Energy Among the first real renewable applications First industrial plant in Italy at Lardarello Active research for wider application Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

13 Challenges for the Distribution Grid Aims of CO2 reduction can only be achieved by restructuring the electricity grid Power Generation has to be substituted with Renewables and Distributed Generation (Wind,Solar, CHP) High penetration of Renewables in the network requests a compensation of its fluctuating power input Current power plants have a low efficiency while working outside their designed operation points Decentralized Power Generation is suitable for compensation Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

14 Challenges for the Distribution Grid The Electrical energy system must be constantly balanced if the sources are less predictable the balance is less predictable if more sources are present and decentralized (not under the authority of one or very few companies) the balance becomes more complex The Distribution system is not ready for automation Very limited monitoring Protection designed for unidirectional flow of power The operation of the system are designed under the assumption of low dynamics Control rooms still have man in the loop Data refresh is in the order of seconds Possible impact at transmission level if large renewable plants are used Strong need for large storage systems Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

15 A Pathway to Smart Grid Transmission Level Partly already smart Power Electronics (FACTS) can make routing more efficient Distribution Level Full deployment of automation State Measurement at Medium Voltage Level using First level of involvement of the customers: Peak Shaving Second level of involvement of the customers: Generation (VPP) Third level of involvement: Storage Home Level Smart Metering Demand Side Management Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

16 Open Questions What is the limit of stability of the grid with distributed resources? How much renewables is the grid ready to absorb? What kind of architecture should be adopted for the control of distribution? Role of Communication Infrastructure in the automation How to address the new challenges in terms of complexity? How are we going to approach the design? Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

17 Need for Advanced Control Methodologies Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

18 New Solutions... New Problems Generation is less predictable. Stability of the network becomes more complicated Energy Storage is becoming more and more important We need to update how we control the energy flow One more option. Change the relation with the user!!! Smart Metering Home Energy System Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

19 Standards for Smart Grid Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

20 Conclusions The Grid is going through a significant redesign and Home Energy Systems are supposed to play a significant role in this process The evolution toward more decentralized energy sources is pushing in the same direction Many technology insertion opportunities are supposed to play a role However significant uncertainties still affect the scenario definition making the industrial progress not as fast as it could be Standard at every level and in every domain are a key enabler and a main element to reduce uncertainty and risk of investment Sistemi e strumenti per l'automazione A. Flammini, AA

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