Decentralized, Democratized, and Decarbonized Future Electric Power Distribution Grids: A Survey on the Paradigm Shift from the Conventional Power System to Micro Grid Structures

Publication Name

IEEE Access


Micro-Grid (MG), a paradigm shift in conventional distribution power systems, facilitates the integration of many Renewable Energy Resources (RERs), storage units, and loads. The key catalyst behind this emerging paradigm is the increased attention to environment-energy sustainability nexus. This novel concept exhibits various attractive features such as sustainability, reliability, resilience, improved power quality, energy security, and liberalization of electric service industries. However, the integration of RER units and load participation into the MG brings various challenges to the stability and operation of the system. These challenges arise as a consequence of the intermittent nature of RERs due to their stochastic behavior and increased level of non-linearity associated with smart load participation. Furthermore, in recent years, the development and deployment of RER in MG networks have demonstrated exponential growth. Therefore, in order to achieve a holistic analysis, a comprehensive review study about various aspects of MG should be investigated. In this regard, this rigorous survey paper presents the meticulous study of various aspects, historical evolution, and key enabling yet transdisciplinary technologies of MG, such as various components, generation resources, load classification, communication infrastructure, energy management, control and optimization, operational modes, and various frameworks, configurations, architectures, and topologies-including the emerging concept of Networked MG with flexible boundaries. This study also reviewed various storage and protection systems in MG, considering the attention to their contributions to the stability of the system. This review also underscores many key issues, challenges, and factors related to the sustainable development of the MG system. Lastly, an all-inclusive cross-sectoral analysis that includes cyber-physical systems, power quality, information and data management, conversion systems, synthetic inertia, and some governance issues has been provided, along with the future directions, progression, and latest development in the field of MG. This survey, therefore, greatly assists and enables researchers to study and analyze the development and prospect of MG technology conveniently.

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