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Title: Examining System-Wide Impacts of Solar PV Control Systems with a Power Hardware-in-the-Loop Platform

High penetration levels of distributed solar PV power generation can lead to adverse power quality impacts such as excessive voltage rise, voltage flicker, and reactive power values that result in unacceptable voltage levels. Advanced inverter control schemes have been proposed that have the potential to mitigate many power quality concerns. However, closed-loop control may lead to unintended behavior in deployed systems as complex interactions can occur between numerous operating devices. In order to enable the study of the performance of advanced control schemes in a detailed distribution system environment, a Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) platform has been developed. In the HIL system, GridLAB-D, a distribution system simulation tool, runs in real-time mode at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and supplies power system parameters at a point of common coupling to hardware located at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). Hardware inverters interact with grid and PV simulators emulating an operational distribution system and power output from the inverters is measured and sent to PNNL to update the real-time distribution system simulation. The platform is described and initial test cases are presented. The platform is used to study the system-wide impacts and the interactions of controls applied to inverters that are integratedmore » into a simulation of the IEEE 8500-node test feeder, with inverters in either constant power factor control or active volt/VAR control. We demonstrate that this HIL platform is well-suited to the study of advanced inverter controls and their impacts on the power quality of a distribution feeder. Additionally, the results from HIL are used to validate GridLAB-D simulations of advanced inverter controls.« less
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Conference: IEEE 40th Photovoltaic Specialist Conference (PVSC), June 8-13, 2014, Denver, CO, 2082-2087
IEEE , Piscataway, NJ, United States(US).
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States