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REVIEW OF INTERNATIONAL NETWORK DESIGN STANDARDS, PRACTICES AND PLANT AND EQUIPMENT SPECIFICATIONS

KEMA Limited
URN 09/748

DWG PG2 INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS, NETWORK DESIGN STANDARDS, PRACTICES AND PLANT AND SPECIFICATI EQUIPMENT SPECIFICATIONS CONTRACT NUMBER: DG/CG/00089/00/REP URN NUMBER: 09/748

Contractor: Contractor: KEMA Limited

The work described in this report was carried out under contract as part of the DECC Emerging Energy Technologies Programme, which is managed by AEA. The views and judgements expressed in this report are those of the contractor and do not necessarily reflect those of the DECC or AEA.

First published 2009 Crown Copyright 2009

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The objective of this study is to identify good international practices and learning opportunities in the construction of efficient and low carbon distribution networks. The Electricity Network Strategy Group (ENSG) provides advice to the British Government and electricity regulator on issues associated with the development of electricity distribution and transmission networks. It is chaired jointly by the Government and the regulator, and has senior representation from network operators, generators and other industry participants. Their aim is to identify and coordinate the technical, commercial and regulatory issues in electricity distribution networks in transition to a low carbon future. As part of their on-going work the ENSG has commissioned KEMA to undertake a review of International Network Design Standards, Practices and Plant and Equipment Specifications. KEMA has interviewed Distribution Network Operators (DNO) in the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, UK and the United States to collect the necessary information on network planning and design standards. These DNOs were selected because of their comparability with the UK network in relation to network structure, size, density and regulation. To facilitate and structure the discussions with the DNOs, KEMA developed a questionnaire, covering topics such as Network Planning Standards, network architecture, network characteristics, network Distributed Generation (DG) penetration and rate of deployment, network innovation, design specifications and operational considerations. The questionnaire outlined the type and extent of information required from each DNO in order to obtain a consistent set of data. The questionnaire was issued to each DNO in advance of the face to face meeting. This enabled participants to consider questions beforehand for the information gathering meeting. The findings from the discussions form the basis of the Review of International Network Design Standards, Practices and Plant and Equipment Specifications. The review is further supplemented by an extensive documentation research and review of international publications and European and American collaborative research and development projects. The main findings can be categorised under three main headings of Network Design, Loss Management and Integrating DG & Renewable Energy System (RES) and the key study findings under each heading are; Network Planning, Design and Specification:

Of the countries studied, only GB has a national baseline planning standard (Engineering Recommendation P2/6) encompassing the distribution network and stating the minimum requirements for network security and load restoration following an unplanned interruption.

(i)

This British planning standard is the only one to to formally acknowledge the potential security contribution of DG and RES for consideration during network planning activity. The other DNO study participants do not currently formally consider the potential contribution from DG or RES at the network planning phase. All companies participating in the study recognised and utilised the global International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards but to varying degrees. The European companies all cited IEC standards as the principal standards used with the US company stating a lesser reliance. In the US the predominant equipment specifications utilise the IEEE and ANSI standards. There is a general consensus that it is preferential in the long run to select equipment based on the total cost of ownership (TCO) or life-cycle cost (LCC) than simply initial capital cost. All study participants use the LCC approach to select network components such as transformers, cable and auto-reclosers. All the European companies consider they have rationalised equipment ratings and stores inventory as far as practicable to provide a minimised set of components to meet current design requirements. They acknowledge this approach may introduce a degree of over capacity in network installations but it also allows a degree of flexibility for any future development.

Loss Mitigation:

Approximately 70% of the losses in electricity networks occur in the distribution network with conductor accounting for 42% of these losses and transformers circa 30%. Two studies from British universities examined the carbon benefits from the use of conductor with a greater cross sectional area than the supplied load demanded. Both studies concluded that there are significant carbon benefits from the reduction in losses over the life time of the oversized conductor; the payback period was found to be 20 years which is well within conductor life spans. The more recent Bath study also accounted for the embedded carbon cost of producing larger cables and concluded that this is not a material factor compared to the loss savings achieved when assessing life time benefits. In the United States the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) directed the Department of Energy (DOE) to specify minimum efficiency standards initially for LV and subsequently MV distribution transformers. A new standard, EN 50464, for oil-immersed distribution transformers up to 36kV was introduced to improve the efficiency of installed transformers at the specific request of the European Commission. New high efficiency classes of transformer have been introduced in respect of both load and no load losses.

Integrating DG & RES:

DG penetrations relative to the total installed capacity of HV/MV transformers is highest in the German and Dutch DNOs. This situation is also reflected in

(ii)

the national deployment levels of DG & RES in relation to total generation capacity.

The high penetration of DG & RES has been readily achievable in Germany and the Netherlands to date due to the ability of the robust network designs to accommodate generation capacity through traditional network design approaches. The awareness of active network management technologies, particularly in the fields of voltage control and power flow management, is strongest in the GB industry. Although DG & RES deployment is comparatively low in GB these issues arise sooner than in other jurisdictions due to the nature of legacy network designs. In addition to the more immediate network operational needs, research, development, trial and deployment of ANM technologies is further encouraged within the GB DNOs by Regulatory incentive through the Innovation Funding Incentive (IFI) introduced in 2005 and the Registered Power Zone (RPZ) scheme for innovative DG & RES connection. This has led to the direct participation of DNOs in the identification, development and ownership of appropriate new technology projects and is a distinct advantage over the European counterparts that rely to a greater extent on collaborative approaches with academia or participation in European programmes. There is scope to reduce the high levels of time and effort expended on the assessment of proposed DG and RES network connection viability. A web based assessment tool has been developed and trialled by 3 UK DNOs and long term development statements are available to reduce DNO and developer engineering effort.

Recommendations The study has determined that the UK DNOs are at the forefront of developing innovative technical solutions for the connection of low carbon RES and other distributed generation into distribution networks. This direct participation should be encouraged through the continuation of schemes such as the IFI and RPZ incentive schemes. Commercial tools are now available that enable a DNO to significantly reduce the effort required from scarce engineering resources in the assessment of the viability of proposed generator connections. One tool offers a stand alone web based solution whilst another utilises the GIS environment to integrate other legacy applications. DNOs should explore the business case for employing such tools in their own operational environment. Providing appropriate locational signals to generation developers for the extent and location of generation capacity acceptable to particular network locations would reduce the effort expended by DNOs on assessing site applications that prove to be unviable. Such tools are at an early stage in development but are considered worthy of moving to trial development by DNOs following successful modelling.

(iii)

Consideration should be given to mandating the installation of high efficiency transformers initially at the lower distribution voltages.

(iv)

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Executive summary................................................................................................... i Table of contents...................................................................................................... v 1. Introduction ........................................................................................................ 1 1.1 Background ........................................................................................... 1 1.2 Aim & Objectives................................................................................... 1 2. Approach to Project........................................................................................... 2 3. International DNO Review & Comparison........................................................ 3 3.1 Introduction ........................................................................................... 3 3.2 Network Characteristics ........................................................................ 3 3.2.1 Overview ................................................................................ 3 3.2.2 HV Network ............................................................................ 5 3.2.3 MV Network............................................................................ 6 3.2.4 LV Network............................................................................. 6 3.2.5 Installed Transformers............................................................ 7 3.3 Planning Standards & Practices............................................................ 7 3.3.1 Standards ............................................................................... 7 3.3.2 Security .................................................................................. 8 3.3.3 Availability .............................................................................. 9 3.3.4 DG / RES Considerations..................................................... 10 3.4 Design & Equipment Specification ...................................................... 10 3.4.1 Design Optimisation & Loss Management ........................... 10 3.4.2 Equipment Standards and Specification............................... 11 3.4.3 Equipment Selection & Rationalisation................................. 14 3.4.4 Issues ................................................................................... 14 3.4.5 Resource requirement .......................................................... 15 3.5 Performance Measurement................................................................. 15 3.5.1 Overview .............................................................................. 15 3.5.2 Trends .................................................................................. 19 3.6 Network Automation............................................................................ 20 3.6.1 Overview .............................................................................. 20 3.6.2 Auto-reclosing Circuit Breakers ............................................ 20 3.6.3 Remote Control .................................................................... 20 3.6.4 Automation ........................................................................... 21 3.7 DG & RES Deployment....................................................................... 22 3.7.1 Generation Technologies ..................................................... 22 3.7.2 DNO Network Penetration .................................................... 23 3.7.3 Country Penetration ............................................................. 23 3.7.4 Trend .................................................................................... 24 3.7.5 Connection Guidelines ......................................................... 25 Great Britain..................................................................................... 25 3.8 Innovation ........................................................................................... 27 3.8.1 Overview .............................................................................. 27 4. Potential Low Carbon Network Technologies ............................................... 31 4.1 Introduction ......................................................................................... 31 4.2 Network Loss Reduction ..................................................................... 31

4.2.1 Technical Losses.................................................................. 32 4.2.2 Loss Mitigation ..................................................................... 33 4.2.3 Conductor selection.............................................................. 35 4.2.4 High efficiency transformers ................................................. 35 4.2.5 Regulatory incentives ........................................................... 38 4.3 Integrating DG and RES ..................................................................... 38 4.3.1 Introduction........................................................................... 38 4.3.2 Active Network Management................................................ 39 4.3.3 Voltage support and network security .................................. 39 4.3.4 Power Flow Management..................................................... 40 4.3.5 Locational Signals ................................................................ 40 4.3.6 Fault Level Management ...................................................... 41 4.3.7 Grid losses ........................................................................... 42 4.4 Energy storage.................................................................................... 43 4.5 Towards Smartgrids ............................................................................ 44 5. Key Findings .................................................................................................... 47 6. Recommendations........................................................................................... 51

vi

1.
1.1

INTRODUCTION
Background

The Electricity Network Strategy Group (ENSG) provides advice to the British Government and electricity regulator on issues associated with the development of electricity distribution and transmission networks. The ENSG is chaired jointly by the Government and the regulator, and has senior representation from network operators, generators and other industry participants. Their aim is to identify and co-ordinate the technical, commercial and regulatory issues in electricity distribution networks in transition to a low carbon future. As part of their on-going work the ENSG has commissioned KEMA to undertake a review of International Network Design Standards, Practices and Plant and Equipment Specifications. The aim of this study is to identify good international practices and learning opportunities in the construction of efficient and low carbon distribution networks. 1.2 Aim & Objectives

The objectives set out for this project are: To study and document distribution network design and operation standards, principles and practices as applied in developed and developing countries characterised by increasing penetrations of DG with strong commitments to reducing carbon emissions. Comparisons should then be drawn with any equivalent UK design standards and operating practices. To include an overview of the high level design principles and any relevant network cost, efficiency and performance metrics as adopted in the countries of major interest. To review current International / European plant and equipment specifications and to compare with typical UK DNO specification. To identify low-cost / high capacity DG connection techniques and low Carbon / low loss network design principles in order that similar initiatives may be recommended for implementation in the UK. To identify potential changes to DNO design standards, practices and plant/equipment specifications that could facilitate a transition to lower carbon/lower cost distribution networks in the UK, thus contributing to the delivery of a low carbon economy in the short, medium and long term.

2.

APPROACH TO PROJECT

To perform the review as set out in section 1.2, the project has been executed with a two stage approach: a) Discussions with international Distribution Network Operators b) Documentation Research & Review KEMA contacted five Distribution Network Operators (DNO) in Europe and the United States to collect the necessary information on network planning and design standards. These DNOs were selected because of their comparability with the UK network in relation to network structure, size, density and regulation. The final selection was approved by DWG-PG2 steering group. To facilitate and structure the discussions with the DNOs, KEMA developed a questionnaire, covering the topics such as Network Planning Standards, network architecture, network characteristics, network DG penetration and rate of deployment, network innovation, design specifications and operational considerations. The questionnaire outlined the type and extent of information required from each DNO in order to obtain a consistent set of data. The questionnaire was issued to each DNO in advance of the face to face meeting. This enabled participants to consider questions beforehand for the information gathering meeting. The questionnaire included several questions seeking statistical network information that could be completed prior to the meeting. However, for the majority of the questions, the questionnaire served as a guideline to structure the discussion meeting between KEMA and each DNO. Prior to issuing the questionnaire to the international DNOs, a pilot interview was conducted with an UK DNO to test and finalise the questions. After the discussions, the findings were captured in narrative and tabular form by KEMA and submitted for review to the interviewed parties. These findings form the basis of the Review of International Network Design Standards, Practices and Plant and Equipment Specifications. The review is further supplemented by an extensive documentation research and review of international publications and European and American pilot projects.

3.
3.1

INTERNATIONAL DNO REVIEW & COMPARISON


Introduction

Discussions were held with several European (Britain, Germany, Spain, Netherlands) and one US distribution network operator (DNO) based on a standard set of topics and queries that were issued to each participant in the form of a questionnaire prior to the meeting. High level characteristics of each DNO area are shown in Table 1.
Characteristics GB Customers (million) Peak Demand (GW) Annual Demand (TWh) 2 Population Density (/km ) 2.2 4.3 20 244 Representative DNO Characteristics Spain 11.5 19.4 107 88 Germany 1.6 2.8 17.6 233 NL 4.5 4.5 35 393 USA 1.7 9.8 67 -

Table 1 International DNO characteristics

The following sections outline and compare the results by questionnaire topic area from these discussions. 3.2 3.2.1 Network Characteristics Overview

In common with distribution networks globally those investigated in detail for this study exhibited a typical hierarchical model for transformation points and voltage levels from the transmission infeed to the customer connection. This demonstrates a universally applied approach to energy supply; from centralised generation, to bulk transportation and a tapered uni-directional distribution system to the point of use. Within this hierarchy, however, there are notable international differences in the degree of rationalisation of voltage levels and the network kilometres required to serve the end customer. There are several historical reasons for this situation such as the planning philosophies that have been in place and the topology of the geographical area served. Network voltage categorisation also differs between the UK and Europe as indicated in Figure 1.

UK

Europe

220kV Tran 275kV smis HV 380kV 400kV sion 400kV

Transmission
132 132kV HV 110kV

Distribution T1
EHV 66kV 33kV MV 50kV 38kV

T2
HV 6.6kV MV 11kV 20kV 10kv

T3

LV

400V

LV

400V

Figure 1 Voltage categorisation in UK and Europe

The distribution network hierarchy in England and Wales generally commences at the 132kV transmission boundary which is sometimes stepped down to 66kV but usually 33kV (EHV) levels prior to transformation at Primary substations to the main distribution HV voltages of 11kV and 6.6kV. Final voltage transformation from HV to LV is performed at Secondary substations. To aid network comparison the UK 6.6kV, 11kV and 33kV (and US 2.4kV to 46kV) network voltages have been aligned with the European MV voltage category and the 66kV and 132kV (US 115kV to 161kV) networks aligned with the European HV voltage category. Transformers in the UK have been classified as follows:
HV / MV (T1 and T3 in Fig 1) MV / MV (T2 in Fig 1) MV / LV

132kv/33kV, 132kV/11kV, 66kV/11kV 33kV/11kV 11kV/0.4kV

Comparisons of network and transformer parameters for representative DNOs from each of the countries studied are shown in Table 2 and Table 3 respectively. In general, it appears that GB has a comparatively efficient network in terms of the number of customers serviced per network kilometre and other countries are less reliant on intermediate voltage levels with HV/MV (typically 110kV/10kV) transformation more prevalent.

NETWORK GB Voltages (kV) HV MV SC Rating HV MV Configuration HV MV


132kV radial, 66kV closed ring Open ring, radial 5,700 MVA (132kV) 250 MVA (11kV) 132, 66 33, 11, 6.6

Representative DNO Comparison Spain


132, 110, 66 36,25,11

Germany
110 30, 20, 15, 10

NL
none 30, 20, 10, 3

USA
161, 138, 115 46, 34.5, 24.9, 22, 20.8, 13.2, 12.47, 12, 11.76, 11.7, 9.1, 7.2, 5.25, 4.16, 2.4 40kA (115kV) 270 MVA (12.47kV) Closed ring

5,800 MVA (110kV) 176 MVA (11kV) Mesh

4,000 MVA (110kV) 260 MVA (20kV) Mesh

n/a 250 MVA (10kV) n/a

Closed ring, some cross connection radial 96 70 7 2 10 15

LV radial % Network overhead HV 86 MV 46 LV 6 Network Km / 1000 customers HV 1 MV 10 LV 12

30kV closed, 20/10kV open ring + cross connection radial 99 38 42 4 16 30

Open ring, radial. 10kV clean interconnectors. radial n/a 0 0 n/a 18 24

Radial, open ring.

radial 99 71 Not available 10 64 Not available

Table 2 Comparison of DNO network parameters

TRANSFORMERS

Representative DNO Comparison Germany


10,003 5,715 5,000 95 6 0.2 4 n/a n/a 8,300 50 4 n/a 6

GB Spain Installed transformer capacity (MVA) 79,020 HV/MV 12,156 48,869 MV/LV 6,743 Customers / transformer 5,825 HV/MV 8,200 90 MV/LV 70 Installed MVA / 1000 customers 7 HV/MV 6 6 0.2 MV/MV 3 4 MV/LV Table 3 Comparison of DNO transformer parameters

NL

USA
16,330 unavailable 1,592 3 9.6 n/a 14

3.2.2

HV Network

In the Netherlands the DNOs no longer operate network assets at or greater than 110kV. This network is now operated by the national Transmission System Operator, TenneT. The HV network across Europe and the United States is generally designed and operated with redundancy providing a security level of n-1.

A high percentage of the HV network, circa 90%, is overhead in all countries studied. 3.2.3 MV Network

The higher level medium voltage networks operating at 30kV and above in all DNOs studied tend to be configured as a closed ring or mesh, providing n-1 levels of security. Distribution feeders in the 10kV and 20kV range are commonly operated as open rings in more densely populated areas and radially in more rural areas in all countries. In Germany these rings are often reinforced with cross-connections between rings and in the Netherlands greater flexibility and security is achieved through the use of clean interconnectors between MV distribution stations. Both these configurations provide operational advantages and provide greater redundancy to the GB DNO network. As illustrated in Table 2, compared to the GB DNO the installed MV network kilometres per 1000 customers is 60% higher in the German DNO, with a similar country population density, and 80% higher in the Dutch DNO with a higher population density. This demonstrates the higher levels of redundancy built into the Dutch and German DNO MV networks as a consequence of historic planning philosophies. There is a greater variation in the proportion of overhead MV networks in each DNO ranging from 0% in the Netherlands to 64% in the United States. All DNOs reported that the preference today is to design and install MV networks underground. Rationalisation of MV voltage levels has been greater in Europe than the US with 10kV (NL), 11kV (GB, Spain) and 20kV (Germany) being the most common distribution feeder voltages. Although a large variation exists in the US the prevailing voltage level is 12.47kV (90%) and the opportunity to convert legacy networks to this standard is taken whenever possible. 3.2.4 LV Network

Low voltage network configurations employed today are universally radial in nature although legacy networks in GB and Germany do have a degree of interconnection and redundancy. Interconnected LV networks are considered expensive to maintain in the German DNO which has approximately 20,000 link boxes, and in all the DNOs studied new LV networks are radial as the economic case for additional expenditure in providing interconnection is poor. European LV network installations are predominantly underground except in Germany where 42% is overhead. Figures for the US DNO were not available, however, overhead distribution remains commonplace. The LV network kilometres per 1000 customers in the Netherlands and Germany is high at 24km and 30km respectively and is double that installed in GB and Spain.

3.2.5

Installed Transformers

In GB there is a greater reliance on the intermediate MV(EHV)/MV(HV) (33kV/11kV) transformation level than in other countries where HV/MV transformation is more common. This is clearly illustrated when the installed MV/MV capacity per 1000 customers in GB, 30 times that of Spain & Germany, is compared in Table 3. Similarities are apparent between the number of customers connected per transformer in GB / Netherlands and Spain / Germany. 3.3 3.3.1 Planning Standards & Practices Standards

Of the countries studied, only GB has a national baseline planning standard (Engineering Recommendation P2/6) encompassing the distribution network and stating the minimum requirements for network security and load restoration following an unplanned interruption. This standard is based on load recovery criteria of a demand group by capacity and time, rather than network characteristics and purpose. In the Netherlands there are national planning requirements for the 110kV, and higher, network but operational and development responsibility for this network has recently transferred from the DNOs to TenneT, the Transmission System Operator. All the review participants have formalised and documented Company planning standards in place that have recently been reviewed. The review cycle is either driven by periodical review, expiry date and by regional changes in network requirements. These standards may vary by region within companies where DNO operations cover a large area where different legacy technical requirements have evolved, but there is a desire to harmonise future network development. Historically, in GB company planning policies often exceeded national planning standard requirements and the extent of current planning enhancements is influenced by regulatory capital expenditure allowances and performance incentives. The Spanish DNO has adopted a unique approach to the advancement of network planning standards through the development of optimised Best Grid models. Two models have been developed, one for the HV network and one for the MV, and are based on known load and generation locations from which an economically and reliability optimised, best model, network is planned. Actual network practicalities and requirements are then referenced against the best model to achieve as close a match as possible. In recent times the introduction of regulatory incentives in GB and minimum legal requirements in Spain for customer service criteria has had a major influence on network planning activity. The GB DNOs are financially rewarded for performance beyond declared regulatory annual performance targets and have responded by implementing network automation and remote control investments within the current planning standards. If they fail to meet performance targets there is a symmetrical financial penalty.

In Spain national customer service targets have been established which all DNOs must achieve or face a financial penalty. There is no financial reward for achieving a level of performance beyond the minimum requirement, resulting in network investment geared to this end. All companies regard their design philosophy as fluid and require constant reviewing and updating to reflect changes in technology, regulation, embedded generation and demand. 3.3.2 Security

The security of supply to customers is dependent on the level of equipment redundancy in the network. For instance, a group of customers supplied by a single circuit will experience a loss of supply for a fault on that circuit; but if a second circuit were to be operated in parallel with the first no supplies would be lost due to a single fault on either circuit. These network configurations are commonly referred to, respectively, as n-0 and n-1 security criteria. Information sourced from interviews suggests that the High Voltage category of distribution network is normally planned to a security level of n-1 in German, Dutch and the Spanish DNO. In GB, although not strictly required by the security planning standard Engineering Recommendation P2/6, the majority of HV networks also meet n-1 criteria in reality. The security criteria of the Dutch 110kV and 150kV network complies with n-1 criteria with the caveat that up to a maximum of 100 MW of load may be interrupted for a period not exceeding 10 minutes. In the event of a network fault occurring during a maintenance outage a load interruption not exceeding 100 MW or 6 hours is permissible. In Germany the 30kV, in GB the 33kV and in the US the 34.5kV MV networks are also generally planned to observe n-1 security criteria. Medium Voltage networks operating at 20kV and below in all countries tend to be operated as open rings, are more radial in nature and are planned with no immediate redundancy, ie n-0. However, alternative supplies to restore the majority of customers are quickly available from the other side of the open ring. In Spain but particularly in Germany networks are sometimes further reinforced through additional cross-connection lines between rings. The Dutch 10kV distribution network operates at two levels; 1) a strong backbone with parallel circuits connecting 10kV busbar stations and 2) an open ring or radial distribution feeder network radiating from the busbar stations. The 10kV backbone is planned to n-1 criteria (as a minimum) and the feeder network to n-0. Very few customers are connected to the backbone circuits and it is now policy to connect all customers to the distribution feeder network. At the Low Voltage level, historical networks, particularly in GB and Germany, a degree of redundancy that enables feeder reconfiguration and supply restoration in the event of a fault may be available. Today, however, all DNOs install radial LV

networks with little or no interconnection but capable of support from mobile generator connections when required. Output measures for annual network reliability are recorded as CI (Customer Interruptions per 100 connected customers) in Germany, GB and the Netherlands and NIEPI (interruptions per installed transformer MVA) in Spain. The US uses System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI) as a measure of reliability. The regulator in the UK, legislature in Spain and Public Utility Commissions (PUC) in the US have set annual targets for CI, NIEPI and SAIFI performance respectively. 3.3.3 Availability

All companies measure network non-availability parameters as a measure of network and customer service performance. These measures vary between countries and can be based on customers (Customer Minutes Lost, CML), lost energy (Energy Not Supplied, ENS), installed transformer capacity (time interrupted per equivalent power installed, TIEPI) or simply the number of interruptions. CML is also expressed as the System Average Interruption Duration Index or SAIDI. Performance measurement is discussed in more detail in Section 3.5. CML (SAIDI) per connected customer is the availability measure used in Germany, GB, the Netherlands and US whereas in Spain the minutes lost per installed transformer MVA (TIEPI) is recorded. In Germany the focus on minimising the duration of outages is left to the integrity and motivation of the operational staff. There are no company criteria or specified standards for customer or load restoration. The US Company also relies on the skills and motivation of the operational staff but has a standard requiring supply restoration to all affected customers within 12 hours. Although there is no formal restoration criteria in the Netherlands the planning philosophy of the studied DNO has changed so that MV networks are now being simplified to enable the restoration of all but the faulted section of network within three switching operations. This represents a marked improvement over previous network configurations that could require up to six actions to restore supplies to the healthy network. The DNO is currently assessing criteria to measure its own restoration performance. In Spain there is an annual target set by statute for the maximum TIEPI minutes that can be incurred by a DNO. The TIEPI target recognises the topological differences across the country and is delineated into four zones; urban, semi-urban, concentrated rural and dispersed rural. Zone targets vary from two hours for urban to 12 hours for dispersed rural. This TIEPI target implicitly defines the average restoration criteria each Spanish DNO must achieve. A more clearly defined approach to supply restoration criteria is taken in GB where a set of Guaranteed Standards stipulates the maximum time period for supply restoration during both normal and severe weather conditions. Failure to meet these

standards will result in potentially uncapped fixed penalty payments being made by the DNO to the affected customers. The definition of outage duration that constitutes a recordable event is uniform across the countries and DNOs reviewed and is based on the EN 50160 definition of a long interruption lasting three minutes or longer. However, the Spanish DNO reported that discussions and debate had commenced to reduce the recordable event duration to 1 minute. 3.3.4 DG / RES Considerations

All distribution companies in the study acknowledge their obligation to connect Distributed Generation or Renewable Energy Systems to the appropriate network point. However, the only planning standard to formally acknowledge the potential contribution of DG and RES for consideration during network planning activity is the ER P2/6 standard utilised by all DNOs in Britain. The other DNO study participants do not currently formally consider the potential contribution (such as voltage support, loss management or deferment of network reinforcement expenditure) from DG or RES at the network planning phase. Although the Dutch DNOs have long had a collaborative approach to cogeneration resulting in an agreed Technical Terms of Connection, the DG connected has not been considered as supporting DNO network development. The network has been planned and designed to accommodate the high levels of DG. Consideration of network support benefits from larger DG units during network planning and design activities is now under review by the Dutch distribution network operator. In Germany, nationally and with the DNO studied, the level of wind generation capacity connected at HV (>60kV) and EHV is sufficiently high that it could not be covered by reserve generation in the event of a sudden collapse of wind generation output. To mitigate this situation all renewables generating plants connecting to the HV or EHV network from September 2004 must provide ancillary services and are no longer automatically disconnected in the event of a network fault. A guideline document REA generating plants connected to the high- and extra-high voltage network for these connection requirements is published by the Association of German Network Operators, VDN. 3.4 3.4.1 Design & Equipment Specification Design Optimisation & Loss Management

The Dutch DNO has adopted a risk based, integrated design approach that considers all aspects from technical specification, component reliability, loss minimisation, life cycle costs and environmental considerations. Losses in the network can be minimised by reducing inefficient power flows in the network through optimising the position of open points in the common open ring distribution feeder. Only the German DNO selected the location of open points on this basis, the others cited operational convenience and speed of fault restoration as
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the prime criteria for open point location. Estimated losses for each studied DNO are provided in Table 4.
Estimated Losses GB Network Losses % of input energy 5.5% 8% 5% 4% 12% Representative DNO Network Losses Spain Germany NL USA

Table 4 Percentage network losses

The German and Dutch DNOs experience the lowest losses and also contain the highest network densities and distributed generation deployment. It was not possible in the scope of this study to determine if network redundancy or the contribution from DG had the greatest influence on loss management. Fault level management and loss management were quoted as secondary criteria for open point selection by the GB and Spanish DNOs respectively. A common approach to loss minimisation is the use of larger cross-section conductor or cable than technically required. Of the European DNOs the German and Spanish companies are also specifying and installing low loss transformers as an aid to loss reduction, where economically justifiable. The German DNO also has a policy of optimising the utilisation of HV/MV transformers at 40% In the US the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) has directed the Department of Energy (DOE) to specify minimum efficiency standards for distribution transformers. The DOE has accepted the efficiency level of LV transformers specified in the National Electrical Manufacturers Association standard, NEMA TP-12002 and this has been in force for all LV transformers greater than 15kVA capacity manufactured since January 1, 2007. From January 1, 2010 there will be a DOE mandatory requirement1 to install higher efficiency MV transformers in the range 10kVA to 2500kVA. It should be noted that the economics of high efficiency transformers are impacted by a range of variables including; efficiency improvement, transformer loading, forecast energy cost, time horizon and cost of capital. In addition the benefits of high efficiency transformers are linked to transformer utilisation and therefore decline with increasing network redundancy. 3.4.2 Equipment Standards and Specification

To ensure interoperability and compatibility the power industry, like many industries, have developed many technical standards over the years. These standards are defined, discussed and formalised in a standards organisation. This can take place at a national, European or global level.

DOE 10 CFR Part 431; Energy Conservation Program for Commercial Equipment: Distribution Transformer Energy Conservation Standards; Final Rule.

11

This section presents the best known standard bodies in use by the power industry. At the end of the section a summary list is provided of the most common standards in use by the network operators. ISO standards ISO (International Organisation for Standardization) is a global network that identifies what International Standards are required by business, government and society. Standards are developed in partnership with the sector concerned. The derived codes, rules and guidelines are the result of consensus from input by numerous national working groups. ISO is responsible for worldwide implementation of standards.

ISO 9001:2000 Quality management systems ISO 14001:2004 Environmental management systems

IEC standards The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) is a worldwide organisation for standardization comprising all national electrotechnical committees (IEC National Committees). The object of IEC is to promote international co-operation on all questions concerning standardisation in the electrical and electronic fields. To this end and in addition to other activities, IEC publishes International Standards, Technical Specifications, Technical Reports, Publicly Available Specifications (PAS) and Guides. Their preparation is entrusted to technical committees; any IEC National Committee interested in the subject dealt with may participate in this preparatory work (website IEC). International, governmental and nongovernmental organisations liaising with the IEC also participate in this preparation. IEC collaborates closely with the International Organisation for Standardization (ISO). Equipment specifications applicable to network operators include;
IEC 62271-100 IEC 62271-102 IEC 60076 IEC 60502

Circuit Breaker, Disconnector & Earth Switch, Power Transformers and MV Power Cables.

European standards The most important European Governmental organisation involved in standards is CEN, the European Committee for Standardization (Comit Europen de Normalisation). This Committee is an organisation providing an infrastructure to interested parties for the development, maintenance and distribution of coherent sets of standards and specifications. CEN works closely with the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC), the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), and the International Organisation for Standardization (ISO). CENELEC (European Committee for Electro-technical Standardisation) deals with the creation of standards in the electro-technical field.

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National implementation of standards is performed by national standard bodies. In the case of European Standards (designated 'EN'), the Members must transpose the final text ratified by vote into national standards, translating them if desired, but without deviation or alteration, and retain the prefix EN in the national designation: e.g. BS EN 1234, NF EN 1234, DIN EN 1234. Thus the number and reference of the standard are exactly the same throughout Europe. In most countries the technical content is completed with requirements of explicit national validity and is often based on long-term practice. Widely used standards include;
EN50160 Voltage characteristics of distribution networks. EN 60265-2:1994 Specification for high-voltage switches. EN 50464-2-3:2007 Three-phase oil-immersed distribution transformers 50

Hz, from 50 kVA to 2500 kVA with highest voltage for equipment not exceeding 36 kV. The standardization bodies of the twenty-nine national members represent the twenty-five member states of the European Union, three countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and Turkey, which is likely to join the EU or EFTA in the future. Engineering Recommendation (UK) Engineering recommendations are standards developed by the Energy Network Association (ENA), the Trade association of the network operators in Great Britain. The ENA is responsible for maintaining the industry-originated Technical Specifications and Engineering Recommendations schedule. Over 400 publications are available in the ENA document catalogue. Examples of recommendations include;
Engineering Recommendation G59/1: Recommendation for the connection

of private generating plant to the Public Electricity Suppliers distribution systems.


Engineering

Recommendation G75/1: Recommendations for the connection of embedded generating plant to public distribution systems above 20kV or with outputs over 5MW.

Engineering Recommendation P2/6: Security of Supply. Engineering Recommendation P14: Preferred switchgear ratings. Engineering Recommendation P26/1: The estimation of the maximum

prospective short circuit current for three phase 415V supplies.


Engineering Recommendation P28: Planning limits for voltage fluctuations

caused by industrial, commercial and domestic equipment in the Great Britain.


Engineering Recommendation P29: Planning limits for voltage unbalance in

the Great Britain for 132kV and below.

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Engineering

Recommendation G83/1: Recommendations For The Connection Of Small-Scale Embedded Generators (Up To 16 A Per Phase) In Parallel With Public Low-Voltage Distribution Networks.

Trends All companies participating in the study recognised and utilised the global International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards but to varying degrees. The European companies all cited IEC standards as the principal standards used with the US company stating a lesser reliance. The European companies also subscribe to Comit Europen de Normalisation (EN) standards adapted appropriately for national requirements. In the US the predominant equipment specifications utilise the IEEE and ANSI standards. Where changes to the specifications due to regional technical variations are required these were always cited as operational, safety related or mechanical modifications by all participants. The electrical specification is not modified. The GB DNO was the only one to indicate that it was now specifying equipment with a higher short circuit rating as an approach to future-proof the network against an anticipated increase in fault levels above the current 250MVA design level. All DNOs have changed their MV circuit breaker specification away from SF6 interruption medium to vacuum interrupters. However, due to technical limitations of vacuum interrupters, circuit breakers operating in excess of 36kV are specified with SF6. 3.4.3 Equipment Selection & Rationalisation

There is a general consensus that it is preferential in the long run to select equipment based on the total cost of ownership (TCO) or life-cycle cost (LCC) than simply initial capital cost. All study participants use the LCC approach to select network components such as transformers, cable and auto-reclosers. All the European companies consider they have rationalised equipment ratings and stores inventory as far as practicable to provide a minimised set of components to meet current design requirements. They acknowledge this approach may introduce a degree of over capacity in network installations but it also allows a degree of flexibility for any future development. Due to the many voltages in the inherited legacy networks the extent of rationalisation in the US has not been so great. However, the company studied is well aware of the advantages of standardisation and rationalisation and is working toward this at every opportunity. 3.4.4 Issues

One common theme regarding design issues emerged with all DNOs; the integration of current and legacy network designs. These were not regarded as technical issues

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but mainly centred on sourcing equipment which is non-standard with the resulting impact of lead times and cost. Optimisation and recovery of DG/RES connection costs is an issue in Germany and the US, with connection ownership also raised as a concern in the US. The accuracy of demand forecasting and weather correction techniques hinder the design process of the GB DNO whilst the German DNO is receiving requests from the transmission network operator to limit fault current levels. Interestingly, the US network company reported cultural resistance to the modernisation of network design and the Dutch DNO met similar conflict when proposing design changes. 3.4.5 Resource requirement

As the volumes of DG and RES connections, and therefore the design workload, increases there has been a mixed impact on design resources amongst the companies studied. Two countries, GB and the Netherlands, reported a general shortage in staff with the necessary design knowledge and skills regardless of any impact from increasing DG and RES workload. The US DNO has recently established a new connections group with one person dedicated almost full time to addressing generator requests for distribution connection. Only the German, despite having the highest penetration of DG, and Spanish DNOs reported no issues with the availability of design expertise. 3.5 3.5.1 Performance Measurement Overview

The parameters utilised by each DNO in the study for network performance measurement are determined at a national rather than DNO specific level. This approach allows accumulation of individual DNO performances to provide national performance statistics and enables a degree of national and international benchmarking. Distribution network performance measurement parameters and methodologies vary considerably between countries from some recording only the number of interruptions, to those measuring reliability and availability indices for each of the high, medium and low voltage networks. The most common reliability indicator utilised is the System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI), also expressed in some countries as Customer Interruptions (CI) per 100 customers. The corresponding network availability index is the System Average Duration Index (SAIDI), expressed in some countries as Customer Minutes Lost (CML) per connected customer. Alternative indices to the customer centric ones above are also employed and may be based on the installed transformer capacity or annual energy consumption. Indices based on installed transformer capacity are favoured by Spain and Portugal

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and express network availability as TIEPI (minutes per installed MVA) and reliability as NIEPI (interruptions per installed MVA). A table of the performance indicators employed by 20 EU countries2 by voltage level is shown in Table 5.
Continuity Indicators Interruptions SAIDI, SAIFI and MAIFI per voltage level (H, M) (HV, MV, LV) SAIDI and SAIFI per voltage level (H, M, L) SAIDI and SAIFI per voltage level (H, M) SAIDI and SAIFI all voltages Average duration (D) and frequency (F) per contracted power or other GB, HU, IT, NO (from 2006) CZ, GR, PT, FR, LT, NO (from 2006) SI (some data only), BE, Wallonia SE, EE, IE, (SAIFI from 2006) AT (average D and F weighted on MV power affected, MV/MV, MV/LV), ES (average D and F weighted on MV power affected: TIEPI, NIEPI) FI (average D and F weighted on yearly energy consumption) FI (interruptions are weighted by the yearly energy consumption of the distribution area that one distribution transformer feeds). PT (TIEPI, ENS, excluding LV) NO (ENS, excluding LV:1kV) Other/ No indicators LV (number of interruptions), PL (no indicators) Country

Table 5 CEER continuity indicators for distribution

A distinction, based on the EN50160 definition, is also made between long interruptions (lasting three minutes or longer, recorded as SAIFI) and short or momentary interruptions (less than three minutes but greater than one second, recorded as MAIFI). Most EU countries and the US adhere to the three minute definition for long interruptions when reporting network performance. No country was found to be recording transient interruptions of less than one second duration. From Table 5 it can be seen that nine EU countries, including GB, differentiate the recording of long interruptions by network voltage. However, only four countries, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy and Norway also record short interruptions. Regulatory incentive schemes to encourage investment that improves network performance are established in Great Britain, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Portugal and Sweden.

CEER Third Benchmarking Report on Quality of Electricity Supply 2005.

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Performance incentive mechanisms are largely based on SAIDI and SAIFI reporting with the exceptions of Norway and Portugal where they are based on Energy Not Supplied (ENS) and TIEPI respectively. Hungary, Italy and Portugal exclude planned interruptions from the incentive mechanism and all countries have a mechanism for excluding force majeure or exceptional events. Great Britain Targets for network performance (CI and CML) were initially set by the regulator for each DNO in December 1999 as part of the Distribution Price Control. Delivery of these performance targets was reinforced with the introduction of the Information and Incentive Programme (IIP) in April 2002. IIP was superseded by the Interruption Incentive Scheme (IIS) at the commencement of the current Price Control period in April 2005. A feature of IIS is that the CI and CML targets for each DNO become more challenging in successive years of the price control period and the corresponding incentive rates also increase. The IIS provides symmetrical rewards and penalties to a proportion of DNO revenue (3%) with the maximum revenue adjustment attributable to CI and CML set at 1.2% and 1.8% respectively. Ofgem publishes the performance and penalty / reward statistics for each DNO in an annual Electricity Distribution Quality of Service Report. To aid more direct performance comparison between DNOs with disparate network topologies Ofgem has agreed the disaggregation of the MV network into 22 circuit categories based on the proportion of circuit overhead, circuit length and number of customers connected. Data from the disaggregated CI and CML performance does not contribute to the incentive scheme reporting but is used to provide publicly available benchmark performance figures for each DNO. In addition to the performance incentive scheme there is a statutory set of Guaranteed Standards that define maximum restoration times following supply interruption (for both normal and severe weather conditions), notification of planned interruptions, response times to connection estimates and voltage complaints and the penalty payments due to customers for failure to meet any Standards. These Guaranteed Standards requirements are customer specific and not averaged system indices. Netherlands All DNOs report annual performance statistics to the Regulator who then develops an informal performance benchmark. Customer service from networks is inherently high due to the MV and LV networks being entirely underground and the high level of network security between MV stations. There is no incentive scheme in place to improve on this performance. If a DNO performance level varies from the regulatory benchmark there is a mechanism in the price review to penalise the DNO but is considered to have minimal impact.

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There does, however, appear to be a desire amongst Dutch DNOs to improve their network performance and customer service levels. Spain Performance is measured by TIEPI which is essentially installed MVA minutes lost and NIEPI which equates to installed MVA interruptions. There is a statutory requirement for distribution companies not to exceed nationally agreed TIEPI and NIEPI (number of interruptions) limits. The limits applicable to the four categories of area defined are;
TIEPI and NIEPI Limits Defined areas Urban Semi-urban Concentrated rural Dispersed rural Table 6 TIEPI and NIEPI limits TIEPI (mins) 120 240 480 720 NIEPI (number) 4 6 10 15

Whilst there are penalties for exceeding the TIEPI and NIEPI limits there is no incentive scheme to reward performance that betters these limits. There are no additional standards governing the response times for restoration of load or customers following an unplanned interruption. Germany The DNO interviewed measures CML, CI, energy not supplied and fault rate per kilometre for the HV, MV and LV networks. These figures are submitted annually to the German regulator (BDEW) who collates all DNO performance statistics. Performance figures shown to KEMA indicate that the DNO compares well in relation to its European peers. In fact, the MV network fault rate per kilometre is approximately half that achieved in Great Britain. German performance metrics were not available in the CEER 2005 benchmarking study but a VDN facts and figures document3 published in 2007 confirms the high performance level attained by German networks.

Facts & Figures, Electricity Networks in Germany, April 2007; VDN.

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Figure 2 VDN chart of network CML performance

There are no separate standards or targets for the restoration of load or customers following an unplanned interruption. The speed of supply restoration is determined by the effectiveness of the operations team. A number of larger customers do have contractual obligations for restoration of supplies following an interruption. No incentive scheme for network performance improvement currently exists but the DNO studied is anticipating this will materialise as regulation matures. United States Performance targets for SAIDI and SAIFI are set by each State PUC and penalties paid if they are not met. Like Spain, there is no reward for improving on target levels. Both Guaranteed and Performance Standards are in place at the US DNO with only the Guaranteed Standards triggering a compensation payment to customers. Targets for supply restoration (80% of customers within three hours) are included within the Performance Standards but do not result in compensation payments if they are not achieved. 3.5.2 Trends

There is a general continuing trend and desire, at DNO and national levels, to increase network performance year on year but at some point an optimum performance level against the expenditure required to realise it must be reached. This is a conundrum for both the DNOs and regulatory authorities. The IIS programme in GB for instance has delivered significant service improvements since its introduction but DNOs are now in a position where each marginal improvement made requires more complex solutions and therefore increased costs. And, in the Netherlands or Germany, do customers require further improvements in service and are they willing to pay for it? Regulators extol a value for money approach and sustain pressure on capital expenditure, and with high performance levels already attained in several jurisdictions it is probably now time to consider performance value optimisation criteria. With varying legacy network configurations and operating area topology

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these criteria are likely to be different for each country. However, once determined, these criteria could be incorporated into a network performance ethos at all aspects of network planning, design and equipment specification. 3.6 3.6.1 Network Automation Overview

This section reviews the utilisation and deployment of auto-reclosing circuit breakers, remotely controlled equipment and automation schemes. 3.6.2 Auto-reclosing Circuit Breakers

Commonly referred to as autoreclosers, these circuit breakers are utilised solely on overhead circuits that are prone to non-permanent, or transient, faults. These devices will automatically close after a pre-determined time after initially opening on detection of a line fault, and it is normal practice globally to attempt two reclose cycles prior to detection of a permanent fault that results in the autorecloser locked out in the open position. All study participants make extensive use of auto-reclosing applied to the line source circuit breaker in the substation, in both the MV and HV networks. It is widespread practice on MV circuits across all studied DNOs, with most declaring 100% of overhead circuits protected in this manner. The GB DNO has approximately 50% of overhead circuits protected with auto-reclosers. Delayed auto-reclosing is employed at HV voltage levels. Where overhead circuits are long or have large spurs, additional pole mounted autoreclosers may be installed that prevent the entire circuit from outage in the event of a fault occurring beyond the additional recloser. Since the introduction, by Ofgem, of the Information and Incentive Programme in 2002 a large number of these downline reclosers have been installed and it is now normal practice in Great Britain where economically justifiable. At this time, other countries have not adopted the use of downline autoreclosers to the same extent as GB. However, the US operator is continuing a programme of installation as part of a performance improvement policy and is likely to achieve similar deployment levels. 3.6.3 Remote Control

Remote control is defined as the ability to operate equipment at remote locations, such as substations and circuit switching points, from a centralised facility. The decision making and execution of any control signal is performed manually, usually through the SCADA system. It is possible for a wide range of network equipment to have remote control facilities incorporated. Remote control of equipment at HV/MV substations is standard practice and MV/MV substations also, generally, have remote control capability through SCADA systems.

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In the British DNO approximately 50% of overhead and 10% of underground circuits have additional downstream remote control devices such as circuit breakers or switches to assist with effective customer restoration after an unplanned outage. The Spanish DNO makes extensive use of remotely controlled apparatus throughout the underground MV network and at least one remotely controlled switch in most overhead circuits. The design and planning of these facilities is targeted at effective and rapid customer restoration by centralised manual control after an unplanned interruption. Whilst the German DNO has remote control capability to 95% of its MV substations the deployment of downline remotely controlled apparatus does not feature in the German network. In the Netherlands the MV feeder circuit breakers have status monitoring only via the SCADA system and are not controllable. Incoming HV circuit breakers in the HV/MV substation have full remote control facilities. The provision of SCADA at HV/MV substations in the US Company reviewed is more mixed with full SCADA functionality to 29% of sites, monitoring only to 11% and no SCADA capability to 60% of sites. It should be noted, however, that many of the HV/MV sites are in remote locations with low customer numbers. Remote control of overhead and underground switches at the US network operator has been applied very judiciously. 3.6.4 Automation

The definition of automation is often loosely translated by DNOs and subsequently applied in an inconsistent manner across the industry. For clarification in this review automation is defined as a scheme of equipment that is capable of network reconfiguration, without human intervention, to restore supply following an unplanned interruption. It is a prerequisite that this scheme of equipment has communication channels to share network and equipment status parameters that can then be used by the scheme control module to execute a pre-determined set of operations. By this definition the use of a single auto-reclosing circuit breaker does not constitute network automation. However, it may be possible to utilise auto-reclosing circuit breakers as an element of an automation scheme as described earlier. In general, the trialling and adoption of MV network automation varies considerably between DNOs from no experience to extensive adoption of underground and overhead automation technologies. The GB DNO interviewed for this study has trialled automation schemes for load recovery following an unplanned outage at the MV (11kV) level but considered the technology insufficiently reliable to retain them in service. There are currently no further trials or implementations of network automation planned. Other GB DNOs, however, have had more encouraging experiences with network automation and there are a significant number of schemes installed to manage supply interruptions on high customer density underground and overhead circuits.

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These automation schemes tend to be managed through stand alone systems. Automation functionality in a number of schemes is provided within the RTU/SCADA combination. In the US DNO three automation schemes for underground, overhead and mixed circuits have been trialled with limited success. Communications technology utilised in the schemes did not prove sufficiently reliable but a more serious issue hindering perseverance with the trials was the lack of acceptance from operational field staff. There are no further plans to proceed with MV automation at the US distribution operator. No network automation schemes have been installed or trialled at any voltage level at the DNOs in the Netherlands or Germany and there are no immediate plans to do so. 3.7 3.7.1 DG & RES Deployment Generation Technologies

The installed capacity of DG and RES by technology type varied considerably across the network operators interviewed. Figures for the major generation technologies reported per DNO are shown in Table 7. In all countries the dominant generation type at High Voltage levels is wind and waste-to-energy/biomass. Medium voltage levels have the greatest mix of generation with wind, hydro, biomass, landfill gas and photovoltaic. Renewable generation in the Low Voltage network is predominantly from photovoltaic sources. Solar energy production in the form of photovoltaic cells is most prominent in Germany and Spain, with some larger PV schemes connected at MV.

DG/RES mix GB DG&RES technology (MVA) CCGT CHP Wind Hydro Biomass Landfill gas Photovoltaic Other TOTAL 493 32 0 13 98 0.07 528 1,164

Representative DNO DG&RES Installed Capacity Spain Germany NL USA 40 1300 2,950 2,117 155 18 5,240 2,367 74 114 17 53 2,624 80 0.7 27 0.6 525 1,933 1,353 1014 237 19.3 10 32 0.7

Table 7 Installed capacity of DG&RES technologies

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3.7.2

DNO Network Penetration

To obtain a sense of how the level of generation capacity may impact on the distribution network it has been compared to the installed HV/MV transformer capacity for each network operator as a proxy for DG penetration, see Table 8.
DG/RES Installed Representative DNO DG&RES Network Penetration Spain Germany NL USA

GB Installed DG&RES capacity % of HV/MV transformer capacity 9%

7%

26%

13%

8%

Table 8 Network penetration of DG&RES as % of HV/MV transformer capacity

When compared to the installed HV/MV transformer capacities the GB, Spanish and US companies studied have similar relative penetrations of DG and RES. High levels of DG & RES capacity in the German and Dutch DNOs has not posed any particular technical challenge to date due to the ability of the highly robust legacy MV network designs to accommodate it. The German DNO, however, has an extremely high relative penetration of DG and RES into its network. In fact, the scale of wind generator deployment in particular is causing issues with power flow resulting, at times, in the backfeed of energy from the distribution network to the transmission system. This is viewed as an issue by the transmission operator as it impacts on generation balancing conditions. A novel energy management system has been developed by the DNO in-house and is now monitoring power flows and controlling connected DG and RES as necessary to prevent a backfeed scenario occurring. This solution is considered to be a temporary measure until appropriate primary network reinforcements have been implemented. 3.7.3 Country Penetration

The national penetration of DG and RES in each of the DNO countries is shown in Table 9 as a percentage of gross generation production.
DG/RES Installed National Comparison DG&RES Production NL 30% 8.9% 39%
4

GB Spain Germany Installed DG&RES production (% gross generation) DG RES Total 6.3% 4.6% 10.9% 7.2% 15% 21% 12.5% 11.8% 26%

Table 9 DG&RES production by country as % gross generation production

Eurostat and Energy.eu 2006 statistics.

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Distributed generation, or cogeneration, has been encouraged in the Netherlands since the early 1980s with distribution companies allowed to install their own generation with the advent of the 1989 Electricity Act. Each DNO generator plant size was limited to less than 25 MW but this opportunity provided the incentive to formulate appropriate technical connection requirements for all cogeneration parties, including the DNOs. This situation in the Netherlands lead to the evolution and strengthening of the distribution networks over the past 25 years that has enabled them to absorb large volumes of DG and RES through primary network design practices. This is clearly illustrated by the volume of DG production shown in Table 6. RES penetration at the national level, see Table 10, reflects that of the network penetration of the representative DNOs studied, Table 8; Germany and Spain dominate both tables.
DG/RES Installed National RES installed capacity NL 2.15 9.6% USA 123.46 11.5%

GB Spain Germany Installed RES capacity (GW) (Excludes large scale hydro) RES capacity 2006 % gross generating capacity 3.55 4.3% 12.43 15.3%
5

27.39 19.6%

Table 10 Installed RES capacity by country

3.7.4

Trend

In March 2007 EU Member States signed up to a binding target to have 20% of the EUs overall energy consumption sourced from renewables by 2020. This target is driving the trend to increase renewable generation capacities in all member countries. Wind generation is viewed as the major contributor to annual growth in distributed generation capacity by all studied DNOs, except the Netherlands DNO where good quality CHP is expected to be the greatest contributor. Wind generator growth in each DNOs country is illustrated in Table 9 over the years 2006 and 2007. Whilst Germany has the highest installed capacity (globally) its growth has diminished, with the USA experiencing the highest growth rate of 45%.

Eurelectric 2006 statistics.

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Wind Generator Growth

National - Wind installed generation capacity GB 1,962 2,389 22% Spain 11,623 15,145 17% Germany 20,622 22,247 8% NL 1,558 1,746 13% USA 11,664 16,913 45%

Installed wind generation capacity (MW) Wind capacity 2006 Wind capacity 2007 % increase

Table 11 Wind energy growth by country 2006-20076

3.7.5

Connection Guidelines

None of the DNOs studied considered the technical design of DG & RES connection to be a barrier to increasing connected capacity. The technical requirements are published as guidelines on an industry wide basis in all countries and utilised by the studied DNOs. Great Britain In GB the DNOs have produced guidance documents (Engineering Recommendations) available from the Electricity Networks Association;
G59/1 for generating plant of 5MW or less. G75/1 for generating plant >5MW or connecting above 20 kV. G83/1 for small-scale generating plant connecting at LV.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) produces a Technical Guide to the Connection of Generation to the Distribution System to guide developers through the entire connection process. Germany There are separate guidance documents for the connection of generation plant to the MV and LV networks. They are respectively;

"Eigenerzeugungsanlagen am Mittelspannungsnetz" - Richtlinie fr Anschluss und Parallelbetrieb von Eigenerzeugungsanlagen am Mittelspannungsnetz; 2nd edition of 1998. (Connecting Embedded Generation at Medium Voltage - Guidelines for connection and parallel operation of embedded generation at medium voltage.) "Erzeugungsanlagen am Niederspannungsnetz"- Richtlinie fr Anschluss und Parallelbetrieb von Eigenerzeugungsanlagen am Niederspannungsnetz; 4th edition of 2001. (Connecting Embedded Generation at

European Wind Energy Association.

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Low Voltage - Guidelines for connection and parallel operation of embedded generation at low voltage.) An additional guideline, VDN Richtlinie; EEG Erzeugungsanlagen am Hoch und Hochstspannungsnetz, was introduced by the VDN in September 2004 for renewables based generating plants connecting to the HV (>60kV) and EHV networks from that date. This new guideline recognised the contribution from these generators to network support, particularly;
the provision of reactive power and voltage support in the event of a fault, limitation of reactive power absorption after a fault, reduction of harmonics at HV and EHV and setting of protection schemes.

Netherlands The strong cooperation between DG owners and network operators during the 1980s resulted in the production of guidance document by EnergieNed titled Technical Terms for Connection. This document was in force and adhered to by all DNOs and distributed generators from 1994 to 2000. Since 2000 the connection guidelines have been embodied in the NetCode. The Dutch Net Code recognises three bands of generation to the public network: below 2 MW, between 2 and 60 MW and over 60 MW. Generators below 5kVA are categorised as domestic/micro generation. In regards to Distributed Generation, the Dutch Netcode requires generators over 2 MW but below 60 MW to submit, on a yearly basis, to the network operator their best possible estimate of the following matters for the coming period of seven years:

place, capacity, technical data, operational limits and regulating behaviour of the individual generation units; place, dates, technical data, operational limits and regulating behaviour of generation units to be started up; place of generation units to be decommissioned and the date of decommissioning; maintenance planning for each generation unit (stating period and duration in weeks).

Generators below 2 MW are generally exempt from this reporting. Spain The Spanish DNO has internally developed set of norms, comprising a design document library for connections. The majority of these norms can be accessed online for reference. The main document, "Normas Tcnicas particulares de Endesa"

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or "Particular Technical Rules of Endesa", set outs rules which apply to electrical installations up to 30 kV. Voltages above 30 kV are regulated nationally. The Particular Technical Rules of Endesa covers amongst others the technical connection requirements for LV and MV installation, LV and MV distribution grid, transformer centres, sectionalizing and power delivery and special requirements for PV installations connected to LV distribution grid. The technical parameters include isolation levels, grid models (rural area, semi urban, urban area, industrial areas), underground and overhead grids and short circuit currents. United States In the US the IEEE 1547 Standard on Interconnection Issues provides the minimum technical requirements for the connection of Distributed Resources, not exceeding 10 MVA aggregate capacity, to the distribution network. IEE 1547 is not considered to be a guideline but provides the minimum functional technical requirements needed to help ensure a technically sound interconnection. 3.8 3.8.1 Innovation Overview

With the global pressures to adopt renewable energy production and energy efficient technologies that reduce the impact on the environment, several crucial challenges face the DNO to enable the penetration of renewable generation to the level targeted by the European Union to meet the 2020 target. The main challenges include voltage management, fault level mitigation and power flow management. It is increasingly challenging to meet the different needs of politicians, regulators, network operators and renewables generators, and an appropriate approach to developing innovative solutions that satisfy all parties is essential. Four of Europes electricity utilities, ENDESA, EDF, EDP Innovao and RWE Energy AG have recently signed an Innovation Utilities Alliance (IUA) agreement. Under this agreement the signatories will collaborate in the field of innovation, developing the electricity networks of the future and energy efficiency initiatives. Great Britain Spending patterns of the DNOs on research and development activities declined markedly and rapidly after privatisation, as shown by the trend in Figure 4.

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Figure 3 DNO Research & Development spending since privatisation

In broad terms, the introduction of the Initiative Funding Incentive (IFI) by Ofgem in April 2005 allowed the DNOs to recover expenditure on research and development activities up to a value of 0.5% of their revenue. This incentive provided the necessary impetus to re-ignite both short-term and long-term R & D activities. Each DNO is able to build its own portfolio of initiatives and research projects but each one must pass specific criteria to qualify for inclusion in IFI, and therefore eligibility for cost recovery. These portfolios consist of a mixture of projects including; developments with vendors tackling immediate issues, collaborative projects with other DNOs, participation in strategic technology projects, partnerships with academic institutions and membership of large European grid development projects A broad range of network technologies associated with network efficiency improvement and DG/RES connections is encompassed within the IFI programme, for example; active voltage management of DG, fault current limiting devices, smart transformers, automation, dynamic rating, redox battery and other energy storage devices and incipient fault detection. There is a broad range of innovative network technologies at the development, trial or implementation stage at each DNO. Another scheme launched by the Regulator is the RPZ, Registered Power Zone. A registered power zone is an area of the national grid network, geographical or electrical, specifically designated for the research, development and demonstration of new technologies concerning the power network. Specifically to develop solutions to the problems associated with connecting generating capacity at the distribution network level. There are currently 4 registered power zones in the UK, operated by different Distribution Network Operators.

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Netherlands A dedicated team has been established in the Dutch DNO to stimulate and manage innovation and R & D activities. There are collaborations in place with academic institutions and membership of the large European projects has been established. The DNO considers that greater collaboration is required between all Dutch DNOs to establish an effective programme that is capable of delivering solutions for trial to be shared across all participants. Main areas of immediate interest are; converters for LV generation connection (solar, PV), active network management and smart grids. There are no trials of new technology currently in progress at the DNO studied. Spain In Spain, ENDESA created an innovation circles initiative (CIDE) in 2006 as a vehicle for conveying to all interested parties the challenges and goals in technology development for the electricity business. The CIDE model encompasses initiatives spanning ENDESAs main business areas and involves all agents, such as employees, suppliers, government bodies and R&D centres, with the mission of searching for and identifying innovative solutions collaboratively. The DNO interviewed did have a company R & D division which is active in several research projects with universities and in developing technology trials. Areas of major interest with initiatives in progress include dynamic wind generator modelling, the impact of photovoltaics in LV networks, energy efficiency and operational safety. Germany The DNO interviewed had no R & D programme or funding available within the company but did have access to the corporate group level programme. However, it was intimated that the DNO is somewhat remote from this programme and no projects of particular interest to distribution network operations had been identified. Areas of innovation of most interest to the DNO are dynamic rating management, LV fault location techniques, smart transformers (a solid state advanced powerelectronic system) for managing photovoltaic generation at the LV boundary and control systems to prevent the backfeed of energy from distribution connected generation to the transmission network. Although the DNO had developed an innovative solution to the transmission backfeed problem it considered this as a temporary measure until the network could be reinforced through traditional design methods. United States A technology development group has been established in the DNO studied but this is currently more focused on incremental improvement to existing equipment. There is a severe resource shortfall preventing more active participation in R & D activities.

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The company is a member of two high profile research centres; the National Electric Energy Testing, Research and Application Center (NEETRAC) and the Distribution Systems Testing, Application and Research (DSTAR) programme. Current focus is on technology and solutions that will drive down costs whilst increasing reliability and improving customer service. Trials of technologies to enhance operational practices are underway; low cost SCADA based on cell phone technology, a phase verification tool and incipient fault detection utilising a drive-by scanner.

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4.
4.1

POTENTIAL LOW CARBON NETWORK TECHNOLOGIES


Introduction

Distribution network operators could play an important role in the transition to a low carbon environment by adopting a Low Carbon Grid Design philosophy that facilitates a reduction in the carbon footprint of the energy chain. As Figure 4 illustrates, this can be achieved by reducing grid losses, which reduces the carbon footprint of the network itself, or by facilitating connection of DG and RES, which helps reduce the carbon emissions from generation.
Low Carbon Grid Design

Energy Related

CO2 Equivalents

DG & RES Friendly

Grid Losses

SF6 Emissions

Reliability Safety Power Quality Grid Capacity System Balance

Cables Transformers Grid Design

Switchgear Grid Design

Cables Transformers Grid Design Switchgear

Figure 4 Identifying low carbon grid design possibilities

These steps mainly represent incremental design changes to the current passive network architecture. The next step change is likely to be in the area of active distribution network management which may, in turn, lead to the future realisation of smart grids. These grids would combine managed power flows, storage, local balancing of demand and supply with complex monitoring and communication requirements. This chapter will discuss solutions identified to reduce network losses, those designed to facilitate DG and RES connection and a view of the possible transition to smart grids is provided. 4.2 Network Loss Reduction

Network losses consist of two components: (i) (ii) Technical losses; and Administrative (non-technical) losses.

Technical losses result from energy dissipated in the system due to the electrical characteristics of the physical components such as conductors, cable and transformers. They are true losses in the sense that they refer to units that are transformed to heat and noise during distribution and are therefore physically lost.

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Non-technical, administrative, losses emerge due to theft, errors in customer profiling, measurement inaccuracies and administration errors. These losses are actually consumed but for the reasons listed are not recorded accurately as energy sales. Only technical losses are discussed further. 4.2.1 Technical Losses

Technical grid losses have two components: variable losses and fixed losses.
Variable or load dependent losses have a quadratic relationship to the

magnitude of the electric current and are dependent on the physical properties (electrical resistance) of the conductors and transformer windings.
Fixed, non-load, losses do not depend on the amount of power which is

transported. These losses occur in all energised equipment and originate mainly in the iron core of transformers and dielectric losses in the dielectric or insulation of cables. Table 12 provides an overview of transmission and distribution losses experienced globally. It must be noted that these losses are averaged and that losses during system peak will be much higher as they are quadratic dependent on the magnitude of the current.

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Transmission and distribution losses Country Finland Netherlands Belgium Germany Italy Denmark United States Switzerland France Austria Sweden Australia United Kingdom Portugal Norway Ireland Canada Spain New Zealand Average European Union

Year 1980 1990 1999 2000

6.2 4.7 6.5 5.3 10.4 9.3 10.5 9.1 6.9 7.9 9.8 11.6 9.2 13.3 9.5 12.8 10.6 11.1 14.4 9.5 7.9

4.8 4.2 6.0 5.2 7.5 8.8 10.5 7.0 9.0 6.9 7.6 8.4 8.9 9.8 7.1 10.9 8.2 11.1 13.3 9.1 7.3

3.6 4.2 5.5 5.0 7.1 5.9 7.1 7.5 8.0 7.9 8.4 9.2 9.2 10.0 8.2 9.6 9.2 11.2 13.1 7.5 7.3

3.7 4.2 4.8 5.1 7.0 7.1 7.1 7.4 7.8 7.8 9.1 9.1 9.4 9.4 9.8 9.9 9.9 10.6 11.5 7.5 7.3

Table 12 Selected global transmission & distribution losses7

4.2.2

Loss Mitigation

Active power flows depend on the load and cannot be easily influenced by network operators. Reactive power, however, which also contributes to network losses is generally managed by the transmission network operator by installing reactors or capacitors locally to manage reactive power demand.
7

Electricity distribution losses a consultation document; OFGEM, January 2003.

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The distribution network operator can influence the extent of network losses at three phases in the life cycle of (a part of) the network. (i) Planning and Design phase During the planning and design phase of a new part of the network it is possible to influence the grid losses by increasing the voltage level (and thus reducing the current) or by investing in low loss (heavier) conductors and transformers that utilise modern materials. (ii) Operating phase The possibilities to influence the grid losses in this phase are limited. The network operator can split the network in different sections to balance power flows through the system. It can also ensure that customers with poor power factor install power factor correction capacitors. (iii) Refurbishment or reinvestment A high proportion of network components is over 30 years old and has a high contribution to grid losses. Technology and materials have progressed significantly and more energy efficient equipment such as low-loss transformers and cables can be utilised to replace ageing networks. As only smaller parts of the network are refurbished, this phase will have less of an impact than phase (i), unless a dedicated replacement programme is instigated. Table 13 indicates that approximately 70% of network losses occur in the distribution system. Distribution conductor accounts for some 42% of these losses and transformers around 30%. Given these percentages, it is clear that the main focus for network loss reduction is on distribution conductors and transformers.
Transformer and conductor losses % of Total Case USA example 1 Australia example UK example 1 Market assessment Average 4.0 2.0 8.0 10.0 6.0 16.2 40.0 24.0 35.0 30.6 32.3 20.0 21.0 15.0 19.0 45.5 38.0 45.0 35.0 41.6 2.0 5 2.8
8

Transformers T D T

Lines D

Other

2.0

Table 13 Transformer and conductor losses in transmission & distribution networks .

The Potential for Global Energy Savings from High Efficiency Transformers, Leonardo Energy, 2005.

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4.2.3

Conductor selection

Network losses are directly proportional to the resistance of the conductors and increased sizing is a straight forward method to reduce losses. Most network operators studied have rationalised the choice of conductors for asset management and inventory reasons, and this implicitly reduces losses as most conductors will be over-dimensioned for the anticipated power flow during network design. There is currently a shift in the planning of networks away from the traditional approach of minimising the cost of investment to one that considers minimising life cycle costs. The major difference in these approaches is that the former did not adequately consider losses. Network design selection based on life cycle cost of ownership was studied at UMIST back in 20019 and results showed that, in the majority of cases, low and medium voltage circuits with a 5 to 10 fold greater capacity than needed is more economical over 20 years because of the reduced losses compared to the minimum size of cable that can still carry the load. At higher voltage levels, the same UMIST study found that optimal loading of the circuits is between half and one third of the maximum capacity, when losses are taken into account. When considering the early replacement of cable and overhead conductor with oversized alternatives a study by the University of Bath10 included the embodied energy and carbon from manufacture to assess any potential environmental benefit. The study concluded that it was important to perform a full life cycle analysis and that the dominant factor in the methodology used was the lifetime electrical loss due to the conductors resistance. It went on to conclude that a comparison of cables at equal loading need only compare the cable resistance to determine the lowest impact option over the lifetime of the cable; i.e. the largest cable has the least environmental impact. A more futuristic approach would be the use of super conductive materials, but these are still in research phase and will not be available on the short to medium term. 4.2.4 High efficiency transformers

The energy efficiency of transformers can be increased through the use of more expensive materials and design optimisation. Low loss (high efficiency) transformers are now a mature technology although it should be noted that the cost is higher. Economic and environmental benefits have already been demonstrated in several studies but it must be noted that highest loss savings are realised when the transformers are relatively highly loaded, circa 65%. Nevertheless, according to studies performed by the European Copper Institute (reference footnote 8), improving the efficiency of existing European transformer stock by 40% would result in about 22 TWh per annum energy savings, equivalent to approximately 9 million tonnes of CO2.
9 10

Network security of the future UK electricity system, UMIST, December 2001. Life Cycle Energy and Carbon Assessment of 11 kV Electricity Overhead Lines and Underground Power Cables, University of Bath, July 2008.

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The European Union and international community have recognised this large potential energy saving and are developing standards for increased distribution transformer efficiency. The current standards are CENELEC HD 428 for liquidimmersed transformers and CENELEC HD 528 for dry type transformers. These standards do not specify power efficiency levels, but define sets of maximum allowable No Load and Load losses for different rating classes. Figure 5 illustrates the wide range in European performance standards (HD428BA to HD428CAmdt with amorphous core) against other national standards. The standards do not give mandatory requirements but leave it up to each Member State to adopt one of the sets into their regulation.

Figure 5 Comparison of international standard transformer efficiencies at 50% load

Currently the European Union is proposing a new efficiency standard in line with the current level of technology and their energy saving strategy. The new Cenelec EN 50464 standard will supersede HD428 for liquid-immersed transformers.

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Global transformer programs Country Australia Canada China EU India Japan Mexico Taiwan USA

Labelling

BET

Efficiency standard Mandatory Voluntary

Test standard

X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X

Table 14 Overview of global transformer programs (BAT = Best Available Technology)

Table 14 indicates where efficiency standards are now mandatory (USA, Australia, China and Mexico) and where the best available technology is utilised globally. A mandatory minimum efficiency standard for distribution transformers is not expected to be introduced in Europe in the near future. The new European transformer standards are likely to be more aligned with the recently published, October 2007, US Department of Energy (DoE) Distribution Transformer Energy Conservation Standards. This US standard raises the minimum efficiency levels of liquid-immersed and dry-type transformers in the range 10kVA to 2,500kVA and will apply from January 1 2010. Efficiency standards have been set at 50% of nameplate rated load and in conclusion of its studies the DoE acknowledges that 25% of the transformer market is likely to incur a net life-cycle cost, i.e. the payback is likely to remain negative for distribution applications. It also concludes that transformers that meet the new standard are already commercially available and that 75% of the market will be neutral to or experience life-cycle benefits. It should be noted that the economics of high efficiency transformers are impacted by a range of variables including; efficiency improvement, transformer loading, forecast energy cost, time horizon and cost of capital. Of the network operators studied in the international comparison the Dutch, German and Spanish participants considered the installation of high efficiency transformers. The US participant has been installing high efficiency LV transformers since 2007 and is mandated to install only high efficiency transformers from January 2010. The Dutch DNO has evaluated and rejected the widespread utilisation of high efficiency transformers on economic grounds.

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A life cycle cost approach is taken by the German and Spanish DNOs to determine site suitability for the installation of high efficiency transformers. However, it should be noted that life cycle costing techniques are reliant on energy price forecasts in the medium-long term. 4.2.5 Regulatory incentives

Active encouragement of loss reduction by government or regulatory bodies through law or regulation is likely to be required as pressure to adopt low carbon networks continues. In the Netherlands, the distribution network operators pay the cost of energy incurred beyond a regulated maximum value. The maximum cost recovery is obtained through the use of system charges, but any additional loss costs have to be borne by the DNO with a direct impact on their revenue. This type of cost allocation ensures that operators are implicitly incentivised to reduce their network losses. In GB, the energy suppliers pay for network losses which in turn are passed through to the customer. The DNOs have no direct financial burden for losses. As a result, the operators have not previously been directly motivated to reduce network losses and Ofgem introduced incentives for network loss reduction in Distribution Price Control 4. The GB is one of only three European countries, the others are Portugal and Estonia, with regulatory incentives in place to encourage the reduction of distribution system losses. In Great Britain the incentive scheme rewards DNOs with 48 for every MWh of loss reduction (2004/2005 prices). It should be noted that since 2005 many GB DNOs have been successful in reducing commercial losses by focusing on un-accounted energy flows rather than technical losses.

4.3 4.3.1

Integrating DG and RES Introduction

In line with the commitment of European Governments to respond to the climate change challenge, deployment of distributed generation and renewable energy systems is being promoted as a mechanism to reduce emissions and improve the carbon footprint of the energy supply chain. It has previously been established that significant levels of DG have been facilitated without the requirement of innovative control measures into the Dutch and German systems due to the robustness and redundancy of the primary network. The networks have remained largely passive. However, with large volumes of RES, largely wind, now connected on the 110kV network in Germany the need for active network management technologies, particularly power flow management, is now being addressed. In Britain distribution networks, especially in rural areas, can be constrained with respect to the connection of DG before the utilisation of active network technologies

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is necessary to maintain network operating parameters within the scope of national planning standards. 4.3.2 Active Network Management

A great deal has been documented on the type and status of active network management (ANM) technologies and it is not the intention to reiterate it in this report. A comprehensive register and comment on international ANM activities and technologies produced by the University of Strathclyde11 provided the following key findings;
The most advanced technical areas are communications & control, voltage

control and power flow management; this is expected as these are often the initial barriers faced in the connection and operation of DG.
69% of the active management activities are currently at the R&D phase

and is taken as an encouraging sign that emphasis is now focusing towards the eventual demonstration of technologies or solutions at the trial stage or further.
The majority of deployed solutions are bespoke/custom systems and there

is a need to develop solutions that have a wider applicability. These findings are in alignment with the practical experience gleaned from the DNOs studied for this review that found;
no evidence of large scale deployment of ANM technologies in any DNO

and
the active participation by DNOs in the development of a broad spectrum of

active management projects is most advanced in British DNOs; this is expected as the GB DNOs probably have a more urgent need for such technologies and are encouraged through incentivisation to seek innovative solutions through the IFI Programme. 4.3.3 Voltage support and network security

In GB the introduction of Engineering Recommendation (ER) P2/6 now requires DNOs to consider the contribution that DG can make in the context of network security at all distribution voltage levels. A deterministic approach to the assessment of the security contribution from DG can now be used to enhance network security, possibly deferring the need for premature network reinforcements. The same design philosophy applies to congested parts of the network, where DG can be used for load support, especially during operational timescales. In Germany and the Netherlands voltage and security support are only considered for DG / RES connected at 110kV or higher.

11

Active Networks Deployment Register, University of Strathclyde, January 2008.

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The Electricity Networks Association is custodian of the ANM Register that contains examples of many projects internationally that are at the research and development or trial phases of enabling voltage control of a network with embedded DG. 4.3.4 Power Flow Management

Several highly diverse power flow management projects are listed in the ANM register ranging from PLC controllers in Greece to low voltage applications in Germany and the RPZ applications in the UK;
In Greece a project utilising interruptible contracts for wind farms to control

the power flow through congested corridors by issuing power reduction commands, whenever security limits are violated has been installed. The control is implemented using Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs). Both preventative and corrective control actions can be taken to ensure power flows are within N-1 security limits. Interruptible contracts and power-flow control scheme have increased wind-power penetration in the Thrace area of North-East Greece, an area with limited transmission capability.
In Germany, PoMS is a novel ICT application developed by Fraunhofer ISE

as part of the DISPOWER project (Work Project 10),which implements active management of distributed generation, controllable consumption, storage and power quality devices in low voltage grids, and covers economic optimisation as well as interventions in case of voltage irregularities.
At the Skegness/Boston RPZ Dynamic ratings are calculated using real-

time load and local temperature information. This allows the thermal capacity of the network to be utilised more effectively for accommodating increased connections of wind energy. An additional 90MW of generation may connect, which will be subject to automatic curtailment based on the breaching of the dynamic thermal capacity. As wind power continues to increase and dominate the RES mix it will become increasingly important to accurately forecast the output from wind farms on an individual, regional and national basis in order to optimise the economic despatching of conventional generation. 4.3.5 Locational Signals

Appropriate locational signals are seldom provided to potential DG developers from the DNO planners. Conversely, a DG operator will wish to install and run the maximum capacity generation possible which may be in conflict with the optimum generation required at a network location or the ability of the local network to accommodate the associated power flows. To address this dilemma a method combining optimal power flow and genetic algorithms developed by the Universities of Edinburgh and Salerno was presented12 at CIRED 2007. The solution proposed aims to provide a means of finding the best
12

Strategic Placement Of Distributed Generation Capacity, Paper 0624, CIRED 2007.

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combination of sites within a distribution network for connecting a predefined number of DGs. In doing so it overcomes known limitations inherent in currently available techniques to optimise DG capacity. Its use would be to enable DNOs to search a network for the best sites to strategically connect a small number of DGs among a large number of potential combinations. The methodology has been successful run on a simulated 11kV distribution network model with 67 possible generator connection points but has not yet been proven in practice. Other initiatives to improve the labour intensive and expensive process of assessing the potential and viability of a proposed generator site have also been introduced; one by a major manufacturer, GE Energy, and another by the renewables developer Econnect Ventures. The GE Energy innovation was presented at CIRED 200713 and utilises its GIS product as the user interface to an integrated engineering tool that provides planning, technical design and cost assessment functionality. It is a tool designed to utilise the data already present in multiple DNO IT systems to improve the productivity of skilled engineers and new engineering staff through the extended use of GIS technologies and process automation. This is a tool aimed at the DNO side of the connection assessment process and user and wider business benefits of the approach have been demonstrated in a trial at a major European utility. Econnect Ventures is an established participant in the renewables industry in the UK and is familiar with the high level of effort and cost required by both the DNO and DG developer in assessing the viability of generator connections at specific network points. To streamline this process it set out to produce an automated connection assessment service for all affected parties. A GIS environment is also used as the user interface but the technical information on network parameters, and existing and planned generator sites, has been built up from publicly available information in the DNO Long Term Development Statements. A successful web based pilot implementation involving three DNOs in the UK has been completed and the resulting product is now available on a commercial basis called GridConnection. At the time of writing the next steps to provide geographical coverage of the electrical data across the UK is progressing. E ON UK has recently purchased the web based tool and is quoted as saying Quickly determining the initial feasibility of projects saves us spending time on those that may never get off the ground. The launch of GridConnection is a key move in our industry, and brings together extremely valuable network data under one roof." 4.3.6 Fault Level Management

Management of increasing network fault levels is of concern to network operators globally and much research is focused in this area from LV level to EHV level in order to avoid any need for switchgear replacement. A summary of the status of this research into fault limiting devices is shown in Table 15.
13

An Integrated Planning, Design And Analysis Environment For New Distributed Generator Connections, Paper 0792, D. Hawkins, CIRED 2007.

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Fault current limiting technology Technology Is Limiter Solid state breaker

Manufacturer/ Developer

Application voltage level

Status

Time to market

ABB and G&W Electric ABB EPRI ABB Nexans (CURL 10) Nexans SuperPower (and others, USA) Japan Korea (DAPAS program) Innopower (China) Power Electronics SCFCL (unknown developer)

450kV 38kV 11kV 69kV 8kV 10kV (10MVA) 110kV (1.8kA) 138 kV 6.6kV 22.9kV 35kV (100MVA) MV

Commercially available Field Test 2 years to test manufacture Successful test 2001 Filed test in progress Demonstrator planned for 2009 R&D, Prototype expected 2009 Testing complete R&D, Prototype Field testing 2007 Demonstrator due early 2007 Test

Available Unknown Unknown On hold Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Test Unknown Unknown

Superconducting Fault Current Limiters

Magnetic Fault Current Limiter Interphase power conrollers Active network contollers

Areva ABB Econnect University of Northnumbria VA Tech T&D UK (now Siemens)

400V (250A) prototype HV networks LV Distribution Networks (11kV)

Unknown Commercially available

R&D

Unknown (R&D project set to complete Feb 2007)

Table 15 Summary of the status of fault current limiting technology.

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4.3.7

Grid losses

The assumption that distributed generation will always reduce grid losses is not valid. Studies show that the amount of grid losses can increase when the local

14

Application of Fault Current Limiters, DECC Report 07/1652, 2007.

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demand can no longer absorb the local generation and the network will have to be used to transport the generated energy surplus. A recent study in the DG GRID programme15 concluded that DG will contribute in the reduction of system losses when DG reduces power flows across distribution networks. This is likely to happen when the DG penetration level is relatively low. However, the studies have demonstrated increase in losses with high penetration of DG and high density of DG allocation. Location specific analysis of a part of the grid, taking into account the distributed generation as function of time, will have to indicate whether distributed generation will increase or decrease the losses in that network section. 4.4 Energy storage

Energy storage devices used in distribution networks allow network operators to perform actions such as peak shaving and voltage support, postponing the need for grid reinforcements, or in combination with intermittent renewable energy sources, increase the reliability and usability of the renewable source. Both uses can bring forth carbon savings when used in the network. Available technologies for distribution networks: (i) Batteries Battery storage is a well established technology and is based upon directcurrent battery banks. One possibility for large scale battery banks is the use of flow-batteries. Sodium-sulphur batteries could also be inexpensive to implement on a large scale and have been used for grid storage in Japan and in the United States. Vanadium redox batteries and other types of flow batteries are also beginning to be used for energy storage including the averaging of generation from wind turbines. Battery storage has relatively high efficiency, as high as 90% or better. Vanadium redox flow batteries are currently installed at Huxley Hill wind farm (Australia, 800 kWh, 400kW), Tomari Wind Hills at Hokkaid (Japan, 6MWh, 4MW), as well as in other non-wind farm applications. A further 12 MWh flow battery is to be installed at the Sorne Hill wind farm (Ireland). (ii) Hydrogen Hydrogen is a chemical storage of energy, which can either be used directly in combustion engines or indirectly to charge fuel cells. Making hydrogen requires either reforming natural gas with steam, or, for a possibly renewable and more ecologic source, the electrolysis of water into hydrogen and oxygen. The former process has carbon dioxide as a by-product. With electrolysis, the greenhouse gas burden depends on the source of the power.
15

Costs and Benefits of DG Connections to Grid System, December 2006.

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Hydrogen technology is currently being trailed for grid storage and is already commercially available for Uninterruptible Power Supply. (iii) Flywheel With this technology electric energy is converted in kinetic energy within a rotating flywheel. The flywheels can be designed to provide lower levels of energy but over a longer period of time, or to deliver bursts of energy for very short periods of time. Flywheels are mainly used a interruptible power supplies instead of battery banks to allow a load to switch over to a standby diesel generator. Currently, commercial devices are available with capacities in the range from 3 kWh to 133 kWh. Flywheels have been deployed in the Azores on the islands of Graciosa and Flores, where a 18MW flywheel is used to improve power quality and allow increased renewable energy usage. Higher capacities, such as 20MW are currently being demonstrated. (iv) Superconducting magnetic energy storage Superconducting magnetic energy storage (SMES) systems store energy in the magnetic field created by the flow of direct current in a superconducting coil which has been cryogenically cooled to a temperature below its superconducting critical temperature. Once the coil is charged, the energy will not be lost and can be released into the network when needed. However, the inverters have loss of 2-3% and the need to powerful cooling equipment makes the technology only suitable for short discharging times, Currently several smaller to medium size SMES units available for commercial use. The most common commercially available size is around 1 MW, which are mainly used for power quality control in installations requiring ultra-clean power, such as microchip fabrication facilities. SMES installations with capacities upto 20 MWh, 400kW are being tested. The technology has been implemented to provide grid stability in distribution systems. In northern Wisconsin, a string of distributed SMES units was deployed to enhance stability of a part of a network which is subject to large, sudden load changes due to the operation of a paper mill, with the potential for uncontrolled fluctuations and voltage collapse. 4.5 Towards Smartgrids

The passive network approach for connecting DG is based on traditional distribution network design philosophies. While transmission networks are actively monitored and controlled in real time, it has been common practice for DNOs to minimise requirements for real time network intervention at the planning stage through appropriate equipment specification. These passively managed networks are typically designed for a single direction power flow and the primary assets are specified to accommodate a set of pre-defined operation conditions, ensuring that the network parameters such as power flow and security of supply will stay within the designated limits until the end of the design horizon.

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With increasing levels of DG, this passive approach could lead to increasing primary asset investment costs. In countries with a high penetration of DG, a more active network design is being adopted. For instance in Denmark DG is actively used to control system operation and it is no longer treated as merely negative load. Basic active network management functionality is already being incorporated within Distribution Management System (DMS) controllers monitoring and controlling various items of plant. In the early stages, the control actions do not have to be sophisticated, but can be slow actions such as changing tap-changers or dispatching supportive DG. In later stages, active networks could evolve towards a larger smart grid. The distribution network operator would play a key role in optimising the local balance between supply and demand. This would be accomplished by integrating aspects such as: Local power generation Local storage Demand side management End user energy efficiency Smart metering

Figure 6 Integrated Smart Distribution grids

The aggregation of controllable load and/or generation enables the DNO to provide virtual power plant (VPP) capabilities e.g. ancillary services to distribution and transmission companies. Such services might include fast reserve for supply/demand balancing, local demand control for contingency situations, management of peak demands that exceed network capacity, and contingency recovery for wide area disruptions.

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Enhanced communication could improve operational visibility of distribution networks in real time and planning timescales; understanding network loading trends, time of day utilisation, and phase balance and enabling capacity to be optimised for cost and security. In the longer term, there may be advantages in designing networks for intentional island operation, for example in areas of high distributed generation, to enhance supply security, or optimise network investment to manage planned outages. Also in the longer term, smart grids could be an integral element in transport strategies using electric vehicles: a vehicle parked at home is potentially a substantial new demand (perhaps controllable via a smart meter), and also a substantial source of electricity export. Wide-scale domestic storage, managed through smart meters, would enable more effective management of variable and intermittent generation sources and intentional islanding becomes much more achievable.

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5.

KEY FINDINGS

This review of international network design standards and practices has studied 4 European distribution network operators (DNO) and one US DNO to identify good practices and learning opportunities for the UK in the construction of low carbon distribution networks. The findings can be categorised under three main headings of Network Design, Loss Management and Integrating DG & RES and the key study findings under each heading are; Network Planning, Design and Specification:
In general, it appears that GB has a comparatively efficient network in

terms of the number of customers serviced per network kilometer and other countries are less reliant on intermediate voltage levels with HV/MV (typically 110kV/10kV) transformation more prevalent.
The HV network (60kV and above) across Europe and the United States is

generally designed and operated with redundancy providing a security level of n-1.
A high percentage of the HV network, circa 90%, is overhead in all

countries studied.
The higher level MV networks operating at 30kV and above in all DNOs

studied tend to be configured as a closed ring or mesh, providing n-1 levels of security.
Distribution feeders in the 10kV and 20kV range are commonly operated as

open rings in more densely populated areas and radially in more rural areas in all countries. All DNOs reported that the preference today is to design and install MV networks underground.
Rationalisation of MV voltage levels has been greater in Europe than the

US with 10kV (NL), 11kV (GB, Spain) and 20kV (Germany) being the most common distribution feeder voltages. Although a large variation exists in the US the prevailing voltage level is 12.47kV (90%) and the opportunity to convert legacy networks to this standard is taken whenever possible.
Low voltage network configurations employed today are universally radial

in nature although legacy networks in GB and Germany do have a degree of interconnection and redundancy.
Of the countries studied, only GB has a national baseline planning

standard (Engineering Recommendation P2/6) encompassing the distribution network and stating the minimum requirements for network security and load restoration following an unplanned interruption.
All the review participants have formalised and documented Company

planning standards in place that have recently been reviewed.

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The Spanish DNO has adopted a unique approach to the advancement of

network planning standards through the development of optimised Best Grid models. Two models have been developed, one for the HV network and one for the MV, and are based on known load and generation locations from which an economically and reliability optimised, best model, network is planned. Actual network practicalities and requirements are then referenced against the best model to achieve as close a match as possible.
The only planning standard to formally acknowledge the potential security

contribution of DG and RES for consideration during network planning activity is the Engineering Recommendation P2/6 (ER P2/6) standard utilised by all DNOs in Britain. The other DNO study participants do not currently formally consider the potential contribution (such as voltage support, loss management or deferment of network reinforcement expenditure) from DG or RES at the network planning phase.
All companies participating in the study recognised and utilised the global

International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards but to varying degrees. The European companies all cited IEC standards as the principal standards used with the US company stating a lesser reliance.
In the US the predominant equipment specifications utilise the IEEE and

ANSI standards.
The GB DNO was the only one to indicate that it was now specifying

equipment with a higher short circuit rating as an approach to future-proof the network against an anticipated increase in fault levels above the current 250MVA design level.
All DNOs have changed their MV circuit breaker specification away from

SF6 interruption medium to vacuum interrupters. However, due to technical limitations of vacuum interrupters, circuit breakers operating in excess of 36kV are specified with SF6.
There is a general consensus that it is preferential in the long run to select

equipment based on the total cost of ownership (TCO) or life-cycle cost (LCC) than simply initial capital cost. To a greater or lesser extent all study participants use the LCC approach to select network components such as transformers and cable.
For equipment specification all the European companies have sought to

rationalise equipment ratings and stores inventory as far as practicable to provide a minimised set of components to meet current design requirements. They acknowledge this approach may sometimes introduce limited capacity in network installations but it also allows a degree of flexibility for any future development. Procurement efficiencies are cited as the major benefits of such approaches.
As the volumes of DG and RES connections, and therefore the design

workload, increases there has been a mixed impact on design resources

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amongst the companies studied. Two countries, GB and the Netherlands, reported a general shortage of staff with the necessary design knowledge and skills regardless of any impact from increasing DG and RES workload. The US DNO has recently established a new connections group with one person dedicated almost full time to addressing generator requests for distribution connection.
Only the German, despite having the highest penetration of DG, and

Spanish DNOs reported no issues with the availability of design expertise. Loss Mitigation:
Approximately 70% of the losses in electricity networks occur in the

distribution network with conductor accounting for 42% of these losses and transformers circa 30%.
Two studies from British universities, UMIST in 2001 and Bath in 2008,

examined the carbon benefits from the use of conductor with a greater cross sectional area than the supplied load demanded. Both studies concluded that there are significant carbon benefits from the reduction in losses over the life time of the oversized conductor; the payback period was found to be 20 years which is well within conductor life spans. The more recent Bath study also accounted for the embedded carbon cost of producing larger cables and concluded that this is not a material factor compared to the loss savings achieved when assessing life time benefits.
The German and Spanish DNOs have considered the utilisation of higher

efficiency distribution transformers but have not adopted their installation as a standard or widespread practice. Each case is assessed on its own merits with a life cycle cost benefit analysis determining the outcome.
In the United States the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA)

directed the Department of Energy (DOE) to specify minimum efficiency standards for distribution transformers. Since January 2007 all LV transformers installed greater than 16kVA capacity must comply with the higher standards specified in the National Electrical Manufacturers Association standard, NEMA TP-1-2002. A mandate from the DOE that all MV transformers installed in the range 10kVA to 2,500kVA installed on the distribution network must comply with the higher efficiency standards (US Department of Energy, Distribution Transformer Energy Conservation Standards, October 2007) comes into force in January 2010. This mandate has been implemented with the full acknowledgement that approximately 25% of the market will incur a net life-cycle cost with the remaining 75% experiencing a neutral position or some benefit.
A new standard, EN 50464, for oil-immersed distribution transformers up to

36kV with power ratings between 50kVA and 2,500kVA was introduced in Europe in August 2007. This standard supersedes CENELEC HD 428 and was introduced to improve the efficiency of installed transformers at the specific request of the European Commission. New high efficiency classes

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of transformer have been introduced in respect of both load and no load losses. Integrating DG & RES:
When compared to the total installed capacity of HV/MV transformers the

highest levels of DG and RES penetration were seen in the German and Dutch DNOs. This situation is also reflected in the national deployment levels of DG & RES in relation to total generation capacity.
The high penetration of DG & RES has been readily achievable in

Germany and the Netherlands to date due to the ability of the highly robust network designs to accommodate generation capacity through traditional network design approaches.
The scale of RES generation, particularly wind, production in the German

DNO is sufficient, at times, to cause a backfeed into the transmission network. This is viewed as an issue by the TSO for generation contractual and balancing reasons and the DNO has installed a novel power flow management system to curtail or disconnect wind generator production. However, this innovation is viewed as a temporary measure by the DNO until the appropriate primary network reinforcements can be made.
No evidence of the deployment of other active network management (ANM)

technologies was found in the DNOs studied.


Technical issues were not viewed as a constraint to the connection of DG

or RES by any of the DNO study participants.


The awareness of, and requirement for, active network management

technologies, particularly in the fields of voltage control and power flow management, is strongest in the GB industry. Although DG & RES deployment is comparatively low in GB these issues arise sooner than in other jurisdictions due to the nature of legacy network designs.
In addition to the more immediate network operational needs, research,

development, trial and deployment of ANM technologies is further encouraged within the GB DNOs by Regulatory incentive through the Innovation Funding Incentive (IFI) introduced in 2005 and the Registered Power Zone (RPZ) scheme for innovative DG & RES connection. This has led to the direct participation of DNOs in the identification, development and ownership of appropriate new technology projects and is a distinct advantage over the European counterparts that rely to a greater extent on collaborative approaches with academia or participation in European programmes.
The participation and knowledge, nationally and internationally, of ANM

initiatives within GB DNOs was found to be as advanced as any network operator.

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6.

RECOMMENDATIONS

The study has determined that the UK DNOs are at the forefront of developing innovative technical solutions for the connection of low carbon RES and other distributed generation into distribution networks less robust than those in situ in Germany and the Netherlands. This direct participation should be encouraged through the continuation of the IFI and RPZ incentive schemes. Commercial tools are now available that enable a DNO to significantly reduce the effort required from scarce engineering resources in the assessment of the viability of proposed generator connections. One tool offers a stand alone web based solution (GridConnections) whilst another utilises the GIS environment to integrate other legacy applications (GE Energy). DNOs should explore the business case for employing such tool in their own operational environment. Providing appropriate locational signals to generation developers for the extent and location of generation capacity acceptable to particular network locations would reduce the effort expended by DNOs on assessing site applications that prove to be unviable. Such tools are at an early stage in development but are considered worthy of moving to trial development by DNOs following successful modelling. Consideration should be given to mandating the installation of high efficiency transformers initially at the lower distribution voltages.

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