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Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1844;

Voltage Impact of a Wave Energy Converter on an Unbalanced Distribution Grid and Corrective Actions

Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingenieros Industriales, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, 28006 Madrid, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Yucheng Liu
Received: 6 September 2017 / Revised: 2 October 2017 / Accepted: 9 October 2017 / Published: 13 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wave Energy Technologies: A Sustainable Energy Source)
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Renewable energy is steadily increasing its penetration level in electric power systems. Wind and solar energy have reached a high degree of maturity, and their impacts on the grid are well known. However, this is not the case for emerging sources like wave energy. This work explores the impact of the fluctuating power injected by a wave energy converter on the distribution grid voltage and proposes a strategy for mitigating the induced voltage fluctuations. The paper describes the mechanics of how a fluctuating active power injection leads to grid voltage fluctuations and presents an unbalanced three-phase power flow tool that allows one to quantitatively analyze the voltage evolution at every phase and bus of a distribution grid driven by this power injection. The paper also proposes a corrective action for mitigating the voltage fluctuations that makes use of the hardware resources already available in the wave energy converter, by means of a control strategy on the reactive capability of the grid-side inverter. The use of a STATCOM as additional reactive compensation equipment is also explored. The effectiveness of the proposal is assessed in the IEEE 13-bus test feeder showing that, in some cases, the wave energy converter by itself is able to mitigate the voltage fluctuations that it causes. If not, a STATCOM can provide the extra reactive capability needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: distribution grid; unbalanced load flow; voltage fluctuation; wave energy distribution grid; unbalanced load flow; voltage fluctuation; wave energy

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Mendonça, H.; de Castro, R.M.; Martínez, S.; Montalbán, D. Voltage Impact of a Wave Energy Converter on an Unbalanced Distribution Grid and Corrective Actions. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1844.

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