Wind energy had a tremendous growth in European countries in the past years, and this will continue if policies do not change significantly. In areas with high installation densities large penetration of wind energy is likely to occur. This leads to a significant influence of wind energy generation on the whole network situation from low to high voltage grid levels: the power quality of wind turbines (WT's), the energy flows to local consumers and the control of WT's play an important role. The reliability of wind energy generation strongly depends on WT power quality and grid conditions.
The prime aim of the project work, is to significantly improve the economical and technical situation of WT's connected to a grid by lowering connection costs or grid reinforcement costs and increasing use of existing grid capacities. Especially in networks with already high wind energy contribution and/or weak grid conditions the cost and technical situation can be improved significantly. The tools and results gained within this project will help utilities, developers and manufacturers in the following way.
- Better use of existing grid capacities will be made due to the fact, that utilities will be enabled to use not worst case assumptions for grid distortion calculation but detailed tools, taking into account the specific power quality of WT's and the specific local grid situation. Thus the grid capacity can be used intensively, allowing higher installation capacities and reduction of grid connection costs.
- The development of WT control strategies towards reduction of distortion and stabilisation of line voltage will help to stabilise and improve the network situation especially in weak, soft and isolated grid conditions. This will also help to improve reliability of power generation especially in weak and isolated grids and thus will lead to a more reliable operation and/or better utilisation of wind energy, in that the turbines will not have to be shut down during high wind speeds and/or low grid loadings.
- The results gained within the project will assist the design of WT's and wind farms to meet the network requirements to the highest degree. I.e. the improvement of mechanical and aerodynamical characteristics during WT layout can lead to lower grid distortions accompanied also by lower mechanical loads. The design of distortion compensation units integrated into wind farms will allow higher wind energy installation capacities.
- The improvements in grid connection and reliable operation explained in the items mentioned above will help to gain higher chances for export of WT's in those regions of the world, where voltage quality and grid infrastructure are low.
Within the frame of this project the development of a calculation tool will help to analyse WT's and networks and their mutual interaction, to design network capacities and topography with respect to WT integration and to develop control strategies for WT and network. In addition the parameters causing grid distortion will be identified, the gained results will thus be able to help the design of WT's with respect to maximise power quality.
The results, methods and tools gained in the project work will help utilities to integrate WT's optimally, manufacturers to design WT's with a high degree of power quality and consultants and research institutes to do elaborated design work on grid integration on embedded power generation.
The export chances for European turbines on the international market could be improved not only due to better competitiveness but also due to the fact that a larger market is available if WT's can be installed in areas with low grid infrastructure and if in those areas the technical acceptance can be improved by increasing reliability of energy supply by WT's.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
19009 Raphina (Pikeermi)