Microgrids improve system reliability with renewables in South Africa

2016-09-26 - T&D World article by Gerry George - September 25, 2016

ABB have developed the ‘Microgrid Plus System and the PowerStore solution that offers continuity of supply when the customer loses supply from the utility network. The microgrid will also maintain its stability during the transition from the network to island operation. This technology has full on-and-off grid functionalities therefore maintain the power supply during network outages enabling industrial customers to maintain cost-effective and efficient production.

The Microgrid Plus System is a specially designed distributed control system that ensures efficient and reliable power flow management in order to reduce energy consumption and fuel, optimizing the use of renewable energy. This management system guarantees optimal loading of fossil fuel generators and spinning reserves. The system is modular-based and the distributed logic of the system will enhance reliability and scalability for the any future expansions.

The PowerStore is a compact and versatile grid stabilizing generator that stabilizes the power system in the event of fluctuations in frequency and voltage. To maintain the frequency and voltage the system stabilizes electricity networks by rapidly absorbing/rejecting power. The battery used includes state-of the art inverters and virtual generator control software and this solution is applicable to islanded grids or in grid support mode.

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