29 Dec 2015
Solar-Panels

JOINERS

PAINTERS

ELECTRICIAN

Challenge

  • Reverse Power Flow
The electric power grid was not designed for two way power flow at the distribution level. Distribution feeders are usually designed as a radial system for one way power flow transmitted over long distances from large centralized generators to customer loads at the end of the distribution feeder. Now with localized and distributed solar PV generation on rooftops, reverse flow causes power to flow to the substation and transformer, causing significant challenges. This has adverse effects on protection coordination and voltage regulators and protection coordination.
  • Ramp rates
Rapid fluctuations of generation from PV systems due to intermittent clouds cause undesirable levels of voltage variability in the distribution feeder. At high penetration of rooftop PV, this voltage variability reduces the stability of the grid due to transient imbalance in load and generation and causes voltage and frequency to exceed set limits. That is, the centralized generators cannot ramp fast enough to match the variability of the PV systems causing frequency mismatch on the whole system. This could lead to blackouts. This is an example of how a simple localized rooftop PV system can affect the whole power grid.

Solution

he urban environment provides a large amount of empty rooftop spaces and can inherently avoid the potential land use and environmental concerns. Estimating rooftop solar insolation is a multi-faceted process, as insolation values in rooftops are impacted by the following:

  • Time of the year
  • Latitude
  • Weather conditions
  • Roof slope
  • Roof aspect
  • Shading from adjacent buildings and vegetation

Benefit

Installers have the right to feed solar electricity into the public grid and hence receive a reasonable premium tariff per generated kWh reflecting the benefits of solar electricity to compensate for the current extra costs of PV electricity.