Facilitating sustainability through smart network design in combination with virtual power plant operation

K. El Bakari, W.L. Kling

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While smart grids are considered as an outcome to integrate a high penetration level of dispersed generation (DG) in the power system, most distribution networks are still passive controlled. To accelerate the transition towards smart grids network operators can take two important steps: 1. developing active distribution network through smart network design; and 2. facilitating active control of dispersed generation through virtual power plant (VPP) system. The role of the network operators with respect to the development of VPPs in the Netherlands is in the first place facilitating rather than operating the VPP system since they are prohibited by law from managing DG&RES. On the other hand, their position in the unbundled electricity chain makes the network operators eligible to initiate the VPP systems in their own region. In addition, the development of an ICT infrastructure is necessary for the transition from passive to active controlled distribution network. Combining the ICT control systems of both VPP and distribution network will prevent excessive costs and benefit the involved operators and prosumers. In the distribution network of Liander, a network operator in the Netherlands, an active controlled backbone infrastructure is emerging as a first step towards smart grids. During the transition period the development of active networks and VPP systems is dependent on the increasing number of prosumers.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Innovation for Sustainable Production 2010 (I-SUP 2010), 22-25 April 2010, Bruges, Belgium
Place of PublicationBruges
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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