What we do in smart grids
Island of Gotland - the first large-scale smart grid area.
Starting during the last quarter of 2011, the power grid serving the Swedish island of Gotland will be transformed into a smart grid. A preparatory study for the project was concluded at the end of May, laying the foundation for a grid that will hopefully become a role model for Europe.
The five-year R&D project aims to develop strategies for the planning, construction and operation of a large-scale smart grid with a large share of intermittent power production. Already today, 30 percent of Gotland’s electricity needs come from locally produced wind power, and another 1,000 MW is planned.
Smart Grid Gotland is a joint venture between Vattenfall, ABB and GEAB, Gotland’s energy company.
Customer information pilot: A project called Customer Information Pilot (CIP) has been operated successfully during 2009. About 2500 end-customers have been using a web-application giving them access to their hourly electricity consumption as well as a number of other services. The project has been very valuable for all parties.
There has been a lot of “lessons learned” ranging from direct feedback from end-customer to solving technical problems when setting-up functions of hourly data from the meters. The results from the project have been used in the implementation of a real system for all network customers in Finland.
Wind cooled overhead lines: We have made a study on the correlation between high electricity production from off-shore wind power and the cooling effects on the overhead lines (OH) from the weather conditions.
If the wind speed can be assimilated in dimensioning criteria, we could avoid reinforcements or constructions of new power lines. The first results show that there is a fairly high correlation but at some hot spots on the lines the cooling effects may be insufficient.
The cooling effects of wind speed in overhead line calculations have not yet been fully utilised. We will go on and perform measurements on the line to verify our results and propose an appropriate method to continue the work with an application and demonstration phase in 2010.
Substation 2030: In 2009 we developed a vision for design of regional substations by 2030 where we have identified innovative solutions suitable for the future. The vision was presented in a paper at the international CIRED conference in Prague. Even though the work has a long time span there is an identified need to also perform more short-term development work.
The vision is also used in discussions with manufacturers to challenge them into innovative new technical solutions in substation equipment.
Asset strategy planning (ASP): To bring Asset Management to a higher level, we have tested and evaluated a software programme called Asset Strategy Planning Tool in Distribution Sweden, by running a pilot project.
This tool is used by Distribution Germany and has the ability to simulate the ageing of large infrastructure asset groups, mainte-nance costs, reinvestment costs, and its effect on network indices (customer interruptions, energy not supplied) by choosing different strategies. Strategies can be to reduce/increase maintenance on different assets, replace assets before or at end of life, etc.
This makes it possible to invest money in the most effective way, in other words with reduced investment costs and increased service levels. One result of the project was to bring in more automation equipment into the grid as the best way to reduce customer interruption. Since the pilot project showed high potential of the software, Distribution Nordic decided to implement the tool into their ordinary business.