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Title: Experimental Evaluation of Grid Support Enabled PV Inverter Response to Abnormal Grid Conditions: Preprint

Abstract

As revised interconnection standards for grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) inverters address new advanced grid support functions (GSFs), there is increasing interest in inverter performance in the case of abnormal grid conditions. The growth of GSF-enabled inverters has outpaced the industry standards that define their operation, although recently published updates to UL1741 with Supplement SA define test conditions for GSFs such as volt-var control, frequency-watt control, and volt-age/frequency ride-through, among others. A comparative experimental evaluation has been completed on four commercially available, three-phase PV inverters in the 24.0-39.8 kVA power range on their GSF capability and the effect on abnormal grid condition response. This study examines the impact particular GSF implementations have on run-on times during islanding conditions, peak voltages in load rejection overvoltage scenarios, and peak currents during single-phase and three-phase fault events for individual inverters. This report reviews comparative test data, which shows that GSFs have little impact on the metrics of interest in most tests cases.

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
Florida Power and Light Company
OSTI Identifier:
1356793
Report Number(s):
NREL/CP-5D00-67576
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: To be presented at the Eighth Conference on Innovative Smart Grid Technologies (ISGT 2017), 23-26 April 2017, Washington, D.C.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
24 POWER TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION; anti-islanding; fault current; frequency-watt control; load rejection overvoltage; ride-through; volt-var control

Citation Formats

Nelson, Austin, Martin, Gregory, and Hurtt, James. Experimental Evaluation of Grid Support Enabled PV Inverter Response to Abnormal Grid Conditions: Preprint. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1109/ISGT.2017.8086016.
Nelson, Austin, Martin, Gregory, & Hurtt, James. Experimental Evaluation of Grid Support Enabled PV Inverter Response to Abnormal Grid Conditions: Preprint. United States. doi:10.1109/ISGT.2017.8086016.
Nelson, Austin, Martin, Gregory, and Hurtt, James. Mon . "Experimental Evaluation of Grid Support Enabled PV Inverter Response to Abnormal Grid Conditions: Preprint". United States. doi:10.1109/ISGT.2017.8086016. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1356793.
@article{osti_1356793,
title = {Experimental Evaluation of Grid Support Enabled PV Inverter Response to Abnormal Grid Conditions: Preprint},
author = {Nelson, Austin and Martin, Gregory and Hurtt, James},
abstractNote = {As revised interconnection standards for grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) inverters address new advanced grid support functions (GSFs), there is increasing interest in inverter performance in the case of abnormal grid conditions. The growth of GSF-enabled inverters has outpaced the industry standards that define their operation, although recently published updates to UL1741 with Supplement SA define test conditions for GSFs such as volt-var control, frequency-watt control, and volt-age/frequency ride-through, among others. A comparative experimental evaluation has been completed on four commercially available, three-phase PV inverters in the 24.0-39.8 kVA power range on their GSF capability and the effect on abnormal grid condition response. This study examines the impact particular GSF implementations have on run-on times during islanding conditions, peak voltages in load rejection overvoltage scenarios, and peak currents during single-phase and three-phase fault events for individual inverters. This report reviews comparative test data, which shows that GSFs have little impact on the metrics of interest in most tests cases.},
doi = {10.1109/ISGT.2017.8086016},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon May 08 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Mon May 08 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Conference:
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  • As revised interconnection standards for grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) inverters address new advanced grid support functions (GSFs), there is increasing interest in inverter performance in the case of abnormal grid conditions. The growth of GSF-enabled inverters has outpaced the industry standards that define their operation, although recently published updates to UL1741 Supplement SA define test conditions for GSFs such as volt-var control, frequency-watt control, and voltage/frequency ride-through, among others. This paper describes the results of a comparative experimental evaluation on four commercially available, three-phase PV inverters in the 24.0-39.8 kVA power range on their GSF capability and its effect on abnormalmore » grid condition response. The evaluation examined the impact particular GSF implementations have on run-on times during islanding conditions, peak voltages in load rejection overvoltage scenarios, and peak currents during single-phase and three-phase fault events for individual inverters. Testing results indicated a wide variance in the performance of GSF enabled inverters to various test cases.« less
  • As more grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) inverters become compliant with evolving interconnections requirements, there is increased interest from utilities in understanding how to best deploy advanced grid-support functions (GSF) in the field. One efficient and cost-effective method to examine such deployment options is to leverage power hardware-in-the-loop (PHIL) testing methods. Two Hawaiian Electric feeder models were converted to real-time models in the OPAL-RT real-time digital testing platform, and integrated with models of GSF capable PV inverters that were modeled from characterization test data. The integrated model was subsequently used in PHIL testing to evaluate the effects of different fixed power factormore » and volt-watt control settings on voltage regulation of the selected feeders. The results of this study were provided as inputs for field deployment and technical interconnection requirements for grid-connected PV inverters on the Hawaiian Islands.« less
  • As PV and other DER systems are connected to the grid at increased penetration levels, island detection may become more challenging for two reasons: 1.) In islands containing many DERs, active inverter-based anti-islanding methods may have more difficulty detecting islands because each individual inverter's efforts to detect the island may be interfered with by the other inverters in the island. 2.) The increasing numbers of DERs are leading to new requirements that DERs ride through grid disturbances and even actively try to regulate grid voltage and frequency back towards nominal operating conditions. These new grid support requirements may directly ormore » indirectly interfere with anti-islanding controls. This report describes a series of tests designed to examine the impacts of both grid support functions and multi-inverter islands on anti-islanding effectiveness. Crucially, the multi-inverter anti-islanding tests described in this report examine scenarios with multiple inverters connected to multiple different points on the grid. While this so-called 'solar subdivision' scenario has been examined to some extent through simulation, this is the first known work to test it using hardware inverters. This was accomplished through the use of power hardware-in-the-loop (PHIL) simulation, which allows the hardware inverters to be connected to a real-time transient simulation of an electric power system that can be easily reconfigured to test various distribution circuit scenarios. The anti-islanding test design was a modified version of the unintentional islanding test in IEEE Standard 1547.1, which creates a balanced, resonant island with the intent of creating a highly challenging condition for island detection. Three common, commercially available single-phase PV inverters from three different manufacturers were tested. The first part of this work examined each inverter individually using a series of pure hardware resistive-inductive-capacitive (RLC) resonant load based anti-islanding tests to determine the worst-case configuration of grid support functions for each inverter. A grid support function is a function an inverter performs to help stabilize the grid or drive the grid back towards its nominal operating point. The four grid support functions examined here were voltage ride-through, frequency ride-through, Volt-VAr control, and frequency-Watt control. The worst-case grid support configuration was defined as the configuration that led to the maximum island duration (or run-on time, ROT) out of 50 tests of each inverter. For each of the three inverters, it was observed that maximum ROT increased when voltage and frequency ride-through were activated. No conclusive evidence was found that Volt-VAr control or frequency-Watt control increased maximum ROT. Over all single-inverter test cases, the maximum ROT was 711 ms, well below the two-second limit currently imposed by IEEE Standard 1547-2003. A subsequent series of 244 experiments tested all three inverters simultaneously in the same island. These tests again used a procedure based on the IEEE 1547.1 unintentional islanding test to create a difficult-to-detect island condition. For these tests, which used the two worst-case grid support function configurations from the single-inverter tests, the inverters were connected to a variety of island circuit topologies designed to represent the variety of multiple-inverter islands that may occur on real distribution circuits. The interconnecting circuits and the resonant island load itself were represented in the real-time PHIL model. PHIL techniques similar to those employed here have been previously used and validated for anti-islanding tests, and the PHIL resonant load model used in this test was successfully validated by comparing single-inverter PHIL tests to conventional tests using an RLC load bank.« less
  • As more grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) inverters become compliant with evolving interconnections requirements, there is increased interest from utilities in understanding how to best deploy advanced grid-support functions (GSF) in the field. One efficient and cost-effective method to examine such deployment options is to leverage power hardware-in-the-loop (PHIL) testing methods, which combine the fidelity of hardware tests with the flexibility of computer simulation. This paper summarizes a study wherein two Hawaiian Electric feeder models were converted to real-time models using an OPAL-RT real-time digital testing platform, and integrated with models of GSF capable PV inverters based on characterization test data. Themore » integrated model was subsequently used in PHIL testing to evaluate the effects of different fixed power factor and volt-watt control settings on voltage regulation of the selected feeders using physical inverters. Selected results are presented in this paper, and complete results of this study were provided as inputs for field deployment and technical interconnection requirements for grid-connected PV inverters on the Hawaiian Islands.« less
  • Abstract not provided.