Mar 2013
Electricity Transmission
European FP7 Projects - Real Smart
Mar 2013
National Grid Electricity System Operator
National Grid TO Innovation Team
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Innovation Funding Incentive
Gas Transmission Networks
Electrical transmission and distribution in Europe is entering a period of significant renewal and technological change. Transmission grids such as the Nordic system, the NG in the UK and the UCTE system in continental Europe are accepting power injections from new and variable energy sources, especially from large-scale wind power generators, and will therefore face major future challenges to operate and control. Policy documents from the US DOE, EU and UCTE and the NG have highlighted (i) the need for improved grid infrastructure and advanced control technologies and (ii) the importance of emerging measurement-based technology in enhancing the stability and security of AC transmission in an increasingly complex operating environment.

Changes happening in the process industries also have an impact on electrical supply. Sustainability, efficiency and maintenance considerations are leading to electric motors taking over from traditional gas turbine drivers for rotating machinery such as compressors. Understanding and managing the interface between these large and variable electrical loads and the transmission grid is of great interest for smooth operation of the transmission system.

Trained, experienced and knowledgeable people are required to achieve the ambitious agenda for operation of the European electricity supply networks in the future. Meeting the target will require collaboration between academia and industry and people able to do creative research who are also trained to convert the technologies into industrial systems and products. The changed operating, business and technical environment in the industry requires new ways to monitor and manage system stability security and reliability. This proposal presents a balanced programme of applied R&D to address measurement-based monitoring and management of the high voltage transmission grid.

The overall scientific and technical aim of the REAL-SMART project is to take a pivotal role in the creation of technology for intelligent operation of wide-area AC transmission grids using emerging measurement technologies. The project integrates in-depth understanding of the operational issues with analysis of state-of-the-art measurements and first-principles physical knowledge to invent and develop tools that will be deployed in the field in case studies with the transmission operator partner.