Year

2022

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

School of Electrical, Computer and Telecommunications Engineering

Abstract

The tendency towards the proliferation of decentralized generation due to economical and environmental factors has motivated electric utilities to immensely increase the deployment of distributed energy resources (DERs) in modern distribution networks (DNs). The onsite efficient power generation by these integrated DERs offers several technical and ecological privileges to the electric utilities, power network operations, and power consumers. Subsequently, these vast deployments of DERs in today’s DNs have significantly enhanced the network reliability and grid resilience along with the deferment of huge investments for the installation of bulk centralized power infrastructures. However, the technical challenges originated by the interconnection of DERs have become hot topics within this research domain. These technical challenges of DER-based DNs include the network stability, power quality, and several protection concerns due to substantial fault level variations and bidirectional power flows experienced by the network protective devices (PDs). This research thesis is focused on the protection design philosophy of DNs amidst growing decentralized generation as an effective protection system is vital for network stability and reliability improvements.

The research motivation for this thesis includes the effective mitigation of these DN protection barriers that hinder the large-scale integration of DERs in modern DNs. Therefore, this research work provides quantitative assessments of the potential impacts of DERs interconnection on the protection adequacy of DNs under different network and contingency state constraints. Earlier, there exists very limited research data about the permissible DERs penetration levels to prevent the various DN protection and stability complications. Therefore, this thesis is also aimed to provide the electric utilities and DN operators with a useful dossier and expertise to evaluate and overcome these protection hazards to allow the continued proliferation of DERs in power grids.

FoR codes (2020)

4008 Electrical engineering, 400802 Electrical circuits and systems, 400803 Electrical energy generation (incl. renewables, excl. photovoltaics), 400805 Electrical energy transmission, networks and systems

This thesis is unavailable until Saturday, August 12, 2023

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Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.