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Reference Number NIA_UKPN0003
Title Smart Urban Low Voltage Network
Status Completed
Energy Categories OTHER POWER and STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES(Electricity transmission and distribution) 100%;
Research Types Applied Research and Development 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
Eastern Power Networks plc
Award Type Network Innovation Allowance
Funding Source Ofgem
Start Date 01 December 2009
End Date 01 January 2017
Duration 87 months
Total Grant Value £5,383,409
Industrial Sectors Power
Region London
Programme Network Innovation Allowance
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , Eastern Power Networks plc (99.998%)
  Other Investigator Project Contact , UK Power Networks (0.001%)
Project Contact , South Eastern Power Networks plc (0.001%)
Web Site
Objectives This project will demonstrate the business benefits of a large scale roll out of a technology that facilitates remote smart management of the LV network. The following will be considered when assessing whether the project has been successful: 1) Connectivity models for the LV network areas chosen for the trial installations have been created. 2) Successful implementation of automated switching of the LV network is achieved (for fault scenarios and during load related supply interruptions e. g. non-fault fuse operations). 3) Reduction in load related CIs/CMLs is achieved in the trial areas, and the impact of faults on the LV network is reduced. 4) More effective management of the LV network can be demonstrated, by using the additional load monitoring data available to address, amongst other things, any over-loading of plant, phase imbalance, harmonic levels and enable planners to optimise network reinforcement designs.
Abstract The Smart Urban Low Voltage Network NIA project registration is the continuation of a previously funded IFI and T1 funded project of the same name. UK Power Networks wrote to Ofgem on 27 February 2015 outlining our request to extend the project using NIA funding. The introduction of electric vehicles and other low carbon technologies, such as electric heat pumps or electric vehicle charging points are expected to drive electricity consumption far in excess of natural load growth. Traditional network reinforcement is unlikely to support this growth, and smarter management of the LV network will be required. To compound this, an increase in distributed generation may have a significant impact on power flows and power quality (harmonics, phase imbalance, reverse power flows, etc.) throughout the LV network. Currently the understanding of the above effects is limited, and observations are difficult due to the limited visibility of the LV network. An increased reliance on renewable distributed generation connected to the LV network, and higher dependence on electricity as an energy source is expected to lead to a greater focus on quality of supply. Customer interruptions due to LV faults will have greater consequences, and fast restoration of supplies will increase in priority. Existing LV fault restoration and fault location procedures involve time consuming manual processes, and LV fault location can be difficult, particularly in the case of underground cable transient faults. Potentially avoidable load-related fuse operations present challenges on highly loaded and densely populated areas of urban LV network, and require substantial resources to manage. Without visibility and smart management of the LV network, there is the potential for the number of load related fuse operations to increase, as additional low carbon load connects to the LV network. We will attempt to address these issues using technical solutions provided by new LV switching technology, in combination with advanced control software. Two strategically selected areas of LV network each comprising up to 20 secondary substations will be populated with the technology: Area 1 (City Rd B South West feeders): This area has been selected because it has recently been changed to a radial running arrangement, and has been subject to load related fuse operations. It will be used to evaluate how proactive LV network management can improve performance, and optimise the use of existing LV plant. Studies utilising the additional visibility of the LV network will be performed to validate existing network models, investigate LV voltage levels and evaluate the level of LV harmonics. Area 2 (City Rd B North West feeders): This area has been selected due to the high number of faults it has recently been subject to. Analysis on this network area will focus on the benefits to network performance offered by remote control and automated switching under normal and fault conditions. A number of case studies designed to allow the benefits of the system to be evaluated have been defined, and will be undertaken once a suitable number of devices are deployed. These will enable us to establish under which circumstances the benefits from installing a more costly LV switching technology, outweigh the potentially cheaper traditional LV network management, and where the installation of such a smart system can offer value for money to the customers. In addition, the extensive load monitoring data collected throughout the duration of the trial will be made available to planning engineers and other business units for analysis.Note : Project Documents may be available via the ENA Smarter Networks Portal using the Website link above
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 14/12/18