Michael Naiem Abdelmassih Ibrahim
Using Wireless Communications to Enable Decentralized Real-Time Analysis, Operation and Control of Smart Distribution Systems
The smart grid is a multidisciplinary approach that aims to revolutionize the whole electricity supply chain including generation, transmission and distribution systems such that it can overcome the multiple challenges currently facing the electric power grid.
The smart grid could be seen as a modern electrical power grid in which information as well as electricity flows among all nodes in the system, information is continuously collected, processed and hence used to control and coordinate the different system components such as distributed generation units, capacitor banks, voltage regulating transformers, etc. Therefore distributed intelligence and two-way data communication links are essential components in implementing the smart grid vision.
There are numerous research efforts focusing on implementing the smart grid vision in electrical power distribution systems, most of which targets only one aspect of the distribution system control and operation problem (e.g. a control system for voltage control, another one for DG control, a third one for protection, etc.), which raises the question: how would these control strategies, when aggregated together to control a distribution system, interact with each other, and how the overall performance would be. Another important concern is whether these control systems can adapt to changes in distribution system connectivity.
In this PhD thesis we address these issues through an integrated design of power systems, communication protocols and control strategies. A unified framework that incorporates all the different aspects of distribution system control and operation is proposed.
Distributed processing units equipped with wireless communication capabilities are used to continuously process the local data along with the data received from other nodes, and forward the results to other relevant nodes in the system. Consequently, changes in any of the system components (load values, status of DG etc.) are taken into account in the calculations, and the results are forwarded to relevant nodes in the system, which in turn process the received data and communicate the processed information to other relevant nodes. This way the information "propagates" throughout the system resulting in a seamless control and coordination among all the system components.
Simulation of the distribution system along with the communication system reveal the effectiveness of the proposed framework to control and coordinate multiple capacitor banks, DG units and voltage regulating transformers with changing load levels. The analysis also reveals the potential of the proposed framework to operate in real-time (within the time frame of normal operation conditions). A prototype of the proposed framework has been built and used to test the performance of the proposed technique.