A generalised deterministic approach to evaluate PV hosting capacity of LV distribution networks under different operating conditions
© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020. Solar photovoltaics (PV) have received increasing attention in recent years due to a number of well-known reasons. Diverse technical merits, declining costs and comparatively simple installations have influenced an unprecedented growth of solar PV systems in many parts of the world. Together with this, there are technical challenges which the network operators have to address in order to maximise the hosting capacity of solar PV generation in low-voltage (LV) grids. Among these challenges, the steady-state voltage rise and line overloading have been the main issues of concern. In order to comply with stipulated network limits, distribution network service providers (DNSPs) are compelled to develop comprehensive techniques for the evaluation of acceptable solar PV hosting capacity levels. PV hosting capacity of an LV distribution network depends on several factors including size and location of the solar PV units, feeder characteristics (such as feeder length, feeder loading level and conductor characteristics) and existing PV inverter control methods. Accordingly, a single value cannot be determined like the solar PV hosting capacity for different LV networks. Thus, a streamlined generalised approach is required to establish suitable values for PV hosting capacity for different LV distribution networks. The work presented in this chapter elaborates a generalised deterministic approach that can be used to evaluate the PV hosting capacity for LV distribution networks under different operating conditions. The proposed approach establishes safe limits for solar PV hosting capacities (cumulative values) for a given distribution feeder based on the locational and operational aspects of the solar PV units employed. The safe limit for hosting capacity has been developed employing a number of sensitivity analyses considering the influencing factors. From a distribution system planning perspective, the use of such a deterministic approach is convenient and more practical compared to the use of extensive simulations. Furthermore, the proposed method can be used as an approximate guide or a rule of thumb to evaluate solar PV hosting capacity at a given location of an LV distribution feeder without using complex stochastic techniques.