ABB has implemented an advanced load-grid automation solution developed as part of the EU-funded Grid4EU project, the aim of which is to support the EU’s 2020 climate and energy targets while laying down the foundations for the development of future electricity grids.
In its first demonstration, the Demo 1 pilot project conducted in Reken, Germany, ABB integrated the technology into the existing local network where it monitors the load conditions in the grid and automatically adapts to changes in demand. It enables existing open ring lines to be switched, establishing direct connection between consumers and generators. This in turn enables local generators to supply power to local consumers, reducing line losses and enhancing the efficiency of the grid. The technology also uses advanced control functions to enhance the reliability of the network and support the detection of the faults, such as overloads or voltage irregularities by the regional network control centre.
ABB is a key player in the Grid4EU partnership, one of the largest EU-funded smart grid initiatives, in which it is participating in three of the six demonstration installations. The company is collaborating with project leader RWE and TU Dortmund on the Demo 1 project and one of its key contributions, alongside technical and domain expertise, is the remote terminal units (RTU500 series). These autonomous devices help determine and optimize the conditions in medium-voltage networks. They play an essential role by interfacing between physical installations and their associated control, data collection and monitoring systems. The objective of the project is to demonstrate that autonomous systems using agent functions for surveillance and automated control of medium-voltage networks can become an industrial solution for better management of medium-voltage networks.
“The implementation of this pilot project is another step in the development of a digital grid” said Claudio Facchin, head of ABB’s Power Systems division. “ABB already offers a number of products, systems and services for the automation of distribution networks, ensuring flexibility while maintaining reliability and this is the latest example of how ABB is pushing the boundaries of what is possible with distribution grid automation.”
With a population of 14,000 and a growing volume of renewable generation, Reken was chosen as a model system and the pilot project will provide insights into the performance and management of larger European systems fed by renewable generators. Results are expected in 2016.
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Technical University (TU) Dortmund