Simulation of Multi-Terminal VSC HVDC System by Means of Real Time Digital Simulator (RTDS)
National Grid Electricity System Operator
National Grid TO Innovation Team
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Innovation Funding Incentive
In July 2009, the three Great Britain Transmission Licence holders supported by
a Project Working Group published their report to the Electricity Networks
Strategy Group (ENSG) on the strategic reinforcements required to facilitate
connection of the generation mix to the GB transmission networks by 2020. The
report presents generation and demand scenarios consistent with the EU target
for 15% of energy to be produced from renewable sources by 2020 and identifies
and evaluates a range of potential electricity transmission network solutions that
would be required to accommodate these scenarios.
Among the options currently under consideration is the use of a multi-terminal
High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) link to provide additional capacity across transmission boundaries in the
onshore transmission system and potentially to be used in the connection of
offshore generation. Such a multi-terminal High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) link might prove to be the most
overall economic and efficient solution available when wider developments are
taken into account. National Grid has not previously implemented Voltage Source Converter (VSC) HVDC converters on the
transmission system and no multi-terminal VSC HVDC system has been
implemented anywhere in the world. The introduction of this technology onto the
transmission system must be managed in a manner that takes due consideration
of any potential technology risks.
The key objective of the proposed work is to simulate a multi-terminal
VSC HVDC link using a Real Time Digital Simulator (RTDS) in
order to study its operation on the electricity transmission system. An RTDS is a
powerful state of the art simulator that allows power system simulation of various
power system components in real-time timescales. The use of an RTDS will
allow for the technology to be modelled in significantly more detail and accuracy
than available via software solutions such as PowerFactory, PSSE or PSCAD.
RTDS systems are also capable of outputting analogue signals allow for the
testing of equipment such as protection relays etc.
The simulation will fulfil the role of a phantom trial in accordance with National Grid's policy for the introduction of new technology. The work aims to
demonstrate that a multi-terminal VSC HVDC system as proposed is feasible, to
identify potential problems with application of the technology, areas of further
research and to inform specifications.
The use of the RTDS will allow for the simulation and evaluation of any converter
topologies or control strategies that have been made public by suppliers or
proposed by other parties.
Further to the primary objective of this research is the added benefit of
developing the UK research capability in the field of HVDC. It is the aim of
industry and academia to establish significant expertise in HVDC in the UK in
order to ensure that the rapid expansion of complex HVDC systems across the
UK and Europe occurs as smoothly as possible. This project supports this aim
and will be followed by further proposals in the future.