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Conference paper information

The integration of wind power in european electricity networks: measures to reduce network cost

F. Nieuwenhout, R. Cossent

European Wind Energy Conference and Exhibition, Warsaw (Poland). 20 April 2010

Large shares of onshore wind in electricity distribution grids will lead to increased network costs. In the EU-funded IMPROGRES project a methodology was developed to quantify the total cost to society of increasing shares of wind and other forms of distributed generation in distribution grids. A number of options were identified for Active Network Management (ANM), where connected loads or distributed generators assists to some extent in operating the network, primarily by preventing situations of peak load or generation. This improves network utilization, which can lead to cost savings. In a case study for a region with a high share of installed wind capacity, three ANM measures were investigated: a) demand side management by shifting load to other hours of the day, b) shifting distributed generation in Combined Heat and Power (CHP) units to other hours of the day, by making use of back-up generators or heat storage, and c) wind curtailment at moments of peak wind power generation. Analysis with a network optimization model showed that the technical potential for applying these three measures results in potential network cost savings of up to about 30%. However, when looking at the business case for these measures, and excluding those measures which would be too costly for the network operator, the resulting potential for network cost savings is only in the order of about 5%. Other case studies in the IMPROGRES project, which include also different distributed generation technologies such as solar PV, show a similar finding: Active Network Management can reduce the network cost for integrating distributed generation by about 5-10%. These findings suggest that one should not be overly optimistic on size of the potential for smart grids solutions to reduce the extra cost of network integration of intermittent renewable sources.

Publication date: April 2010.

F. Nieuwenhout, R. Cossent, The integration of wind power in european electricity networks: measures to reduce network cost, European Wind Energy Conference and Exhibition - EWEC 2010, Warsaw (Poland). 20-23 April 2010.

    Research topics:
  • Smart grids
  • Green energy integration
  • Regulation of energy network infrastructures


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