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In the Loop

Grid of the Future Symposium and CIGRE Colloquium

Grid of the Future Symposium and CIGRE Colloquium, Philadelphia, USA

CIGRE Australia sponsored Graeme Ancell to attend the Grid Of The Future Symposium and the International CIGRE Colloquium held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania over 31 October to 3 November 2016.  The symposium is a forum for participants to discuss state-of-the-art innovations in generation, transmission, distribution, and innovative smart grid technologies and has been held annually at different locations in the US for the last five years. The Colloquium was supported by Study Committees C1, A1, C5 and C6 and focused on the role of reliability standards and grid codes in defining the technical connection conditions of generation equipment, distributed resource technologies, demand response technologies and storage technologies.

CIGRE Australia members made contributions to the Colloquium. The results of one of CIGRE Australia’s sponsored working groups C1.32 (Best practice in Load Forecasting) were presented at the Colloquium.  The paper is not yet available, however the TOR can be downloaded here.  More information on the Working Group can be found in this article.

The operation and planning of power systems in the presence of large amounts of non-synchronous generation and load was a major theme throughout the symposium and the colloquium. The need for explicitly modelling distributed non-synchronous generation and load was highlighted by several presenters. Another presentation showed how large amounts of distributed non-synchronous generation reduced transient stability limits in the Western Interconnection in the US. There are growing views that distributed energy resources need to be treated as mature technologies which support the power system. There is also a view that transmission and distribution need to be treated as one system for planning purposes.

The revision of the IEEE standards 1547 and 1547.1 (interconnection standard for distributed energy resources) was presented. The standard will require distributed resources to have voltage and frequency disturbance ride through, provide voltage and frequency support and have a communication interface. The new standards will take effect in 2017.

Another topic of interest to Australia and New Zealand was the implementation of NERC planning standard TPL-007 which requires utilities to undertake a geo-magnetic disturbance vulnerability audit every five years. The Tennessee Valley Authority reported on the outcome of their recent geo‑magnetic disturbance vulnerability assessment.

There was considerable interest in distribution microgrids at both the symposium and colloquium. Microgrids, whether operated by distribution or independently can provide reliability benefits and ancillary services. The colloquium had a visit to the Philadelphia ship yard which has an operational microgrid.

The growing interest in the topic of microgrids will also be topic of interest at CIGRE Australia's CIDER to be held in Sydney during August 2017.