An application of modal analysis in electric power systems to study inter-area oscillations

University essay from KTH/Elektriska energisystem

Author: Francois Dussaud; [2015]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: In order to make the electricity supply more reliable and with the development of electricity trading, electric power systems have been steadily growing these last decades. The interconnection of formerly isolated networks has resulted in very large and complex power systems. The drawback of this evolution is that these very large systems are now more vulnerable to stability issues like inter-area oscillations where one area oscillates against one or many others. These instabilities may be particularly dangerous if they lead to a blackout (North America, 2003) which is why stability analysis has to be performed so as to prevent these phenomena. The modal analysis, which is a frequency domain approach, is a very powerful tool to characterize the small signal stability of a power system and will be the one presented in this report. This report is the result of a master thesis project performed in September 2014 to February 2015 at the Network Studies Department of the Power System & Transmission Engineering Department of the EDF group. Over the years, EDF has developed a considerable experience in the diagnostic of inter-area oscillations and the tuning of power system stabilizers by taking repeating actions in electrical networks worldwide. The main task of this report is to formalize this expertise and widen the services offer of the Network Studies Department. Indeed as explained above the development of large electrical networks has increased the need for dynamic stability studies with particular attention to inter-area oscillations. The work done during this project was then organized to guarantee the durability of this expertise and can be divided into two parts: the first one deals with the theory behind modal analysis and how it can be applied to power systems to diagnose eventual stability issues regarding inter-area oscillations; and a second part which tries to give a method to follow to neutralize the impact of an eventual diagnosed inter-area oscillation. Then, of course, a case study based on an actual network has been used to illustrate most of the theory and finally, last but not least in the engineering scope, a sensitivity analysis has been performed. It is actually very important to know which parameters have to be known precisely and which one can be estimated with standard values because in such a study the time required for the data collection can be unreasonably long. It appears from this project that the modal analysis, with its frequency domain approach, is a very convenient tool to characterize the dynamic evolution of a power system around its operating point. It allows to clearly identify the role of each group and to gather groups with the same behavior easily. However, the method used to eliminate the effect of any undesired inter-area oscillation is not easy to implement on an actual power system as a many things have to be taken into consideration if one want to avoid unwanted side effects and it necessitates important precision in the data.

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