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EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.


Low voltage ride-through capabilities of wind plant combining
different turbine technologies
1,2 2 2 3
Alexandre Teninge , Daniel Roye , Seddik Bacha , Jérôme Duval
1: IDEA, France – 2: G2Elab, France – 3: EDF R&D, France

In this paper, the low voltage ride-through (LVRT) capabilities of a mixed wind plant is studied.
The wind plant considered combines fixed speed wind turbines (FSWTs) based on induction
generator and full power converter variable speed wind turbines (VSWTs) with permanent
magnet generator. However, it must be able to respect grid code requirements. A specific
control of the variable speed wind turbine power converters is proposed and described in this
paper to support FSWTs during voltage dips. Simulation results show the ability of the wind
plant to ride-through the voltage dip with this control.


DFIG Double Fed Induction Generator
FSWT Fixed Speed Wind Turbine
GSC Grid Side Converter
IG Induction Generator
LVRT Low Voltage Ride Through
PCC Point of Common Coupling
PMSG Permanent Magnet Synchronous Generator
SSC Stator Side Converter
VSWT Variable Speed Wind Turbine
WF Wind Farm
WT Wind Turbine

1. Introduction
During the last decades, the penetration rate of wind generation in electrical grids has
experienced an important development, especially in Europe. Nowadays, connected wind
turbine generators are mainly variable speed wind turbines (VSWTs) associated with power
electronics converters. The technology evolution because make more easy the energy fluxes
control in one hand and in on other hand permits to respond to grid codes requirements which
are defined to cope with wind energy effects on the power system [1-3]. However the VSWT
technologies are more expensive than the fixed ones. The core idea of this paper is to study
and control element of a mixed wind plant with fixed and variable speed WT systems.
At the present time, and considering the progress in wind turbine (WT) technologies, only
VSWT technologies are able to respect all grid codes requirements, thanks to its control

Alexandre Teninge
G2Elab, UMR 5269, Grenoble INP – UJF – CNRS,
961 rue de la Houille Blanche, BP46,
38 402 St Martin d’Hères Cedex, France

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

capabilities. But these technologies are expensive, due to the additional costs coming from
power electronics converter and specific generator (double fed machine or permanent magnets
synchronous machine). On the other hand, fixed speed wind turbines (FSWTs) are cheaper but
have poor capabilities to answer to the grid codes requirements. This kind of technology is not
able to control reactive power and is particularly maladjusted to remain connected following a
voltage dip [4-7]. To allow LVRT of FSWTs, some studies have suggested addition of power
electronics systems, with or without storage systems, to supports FSWTs during voltage dips [6-
7]. In this paper FSWT and VSWT technologies are considered in the same wind plant. The
study explores the capability to use power electronics systems of VSWTs to support FSWTs
during voltage drops.
The mixed wind plant considered is constituted of height FSWTs based on classical induction
generator (IG), with pitch control system, and height VSWTs based on permanent magnet
synchronous generator (PMSG), with direct drive transmission and full power converter. The
aim is to use the grid side converter (GSC) of VSWTs as a “STATCOM” during voltage dips to
support the FSWTs. This paper presents the additional specific controls applied to the power
converters to ensure this operating.
The using of VSWTs based on doubly-fed induction generator (DFIG) to constitute the mixed
wind plant was not on the focus of this paper. Indeed, studies show that this technology is just
able to support LVRT itself [3]. Furthermore, its capability to manage reactive power during
voltage dips is limited to the power capacity of the grid side converter which is at least three
times lower than a WT with full power converter one.
A brief description of the modelling of the WT technologies used in this study is presented first.
Then the different classical controls used for the normal operating mode and the developed
ones used to ensure LVRT of the mixed wind plant are described. Finally simulation results
showing the capability of the mixed wind plant to perform LVRT are presented.

2. Information on modelling of wind turbines technologies
Voltage dips is the cause of many phenomena on the whole WT system. Therefore the
modelling must take into account the dynamic behaviours of the different WT elements. Since
many years, models have been developed to study the WTs behaviours in normal operation
mode and/or in case of grid fault. The modelling used in this study comes from previous studies
and particularly from [8]. Some details of the WTs modelling are presented in this paper.
The structure of each technology used in this study is presented Fig. 1. The two different
technologies are based on a 660 kW pitch controlled turbine. Gear box, induction generator,
capacitor bank and transformer constitute the FSWT system. VSWTs are connected to the grid
through a transformer and a full power back-to-back converter. An additional controlled switch is
used to limit the DC-link voltage crest value; this switch constitutes an elementary DC-chopper.
Direct drive transmission, and thus, multipolar permanent magnet synchronous generator are
considered for this technology.

Table 1 summarizes the modelling of the different elements of the both WTs technologies used
in this paper.
Turbine Transmission Generator Grid connection
- 660 kW
- gear box - asynchronous - direct with capacitor bank
FSWT - pitch control
Cp(λ,β,) 2 masses model d-q reference frame d-q reference frame
- 660 kW
- direct drive - permanent magnet - full power back-to-back converter
VSWT - pitch control
Cp(λ,β,) 1 mass model d-q reference frame average model in d-q reference frame
Table 1: Elements constituting the FSWT ans the VSWT and information of its modelling

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

Turbine + pitch
Gear Box Capacitor bank

FSWT based on conventional induction generator


Turbine + pitch drive
Back-to-back converter GRID

VSWT based on permanent magnet synchronous generator with direct drive transmission

Fig. 1: Structures of fixed and variable speed wind turbines

The turbine model is characterized by the power coefficient (CP(λ,β)) variation, where the
variables are the tip ratio (λ) (1) and the pitch angle (β). The turbine model provides the turbine
torque (ΓT) (3) to the transmission model. The torque is calculated from the extracted power (PT)
(2) and the turbine rotational speed (RT), this one is issued from the transmission model (see
Fig. 2).

λ= (1)
PT = C P ( λ , β ) ρ π RT v 3 (2)
ΓT = (3)

Fixed Speed Wind Turbine:
This technology uses conventional induction generator; therefore, the rotational speed of the
turbine is adapted to the generator one by a gear box. This gear box introduces “a flexibility” in
the drive train. A strong torque variation on the turbine or on the generator leads to torsional
oscillations in the drive train. That is what occurs when there is a voltage dip, and this behaviour
must be taken into account in the model building. To reflect this behaviour, a two-mass model is
used for the gear box [5].

Variable Speed Wind Turbine:
Some studies show that for wind turbine with full power converter, the rotational speed is almost
not affected by a voltage drop [9-10]. This is permitted thanks to the DC-chopper which
dissipates the excess energy, and maintains the DC-bus voltage in a range where the stator
side convert (SSC) is able to run smoothly. Therefore, it is possible to use a single-mass model
for the transmission.

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

Induction generator and permanent magnet synchronous generator are modelled classically in a
d-q reference frame [8][11]. For the model of the PMSG the stator flux transients are neglected,
and the q-axis stator flux contribution is null because of the permanent magnet of the rotor is

Back-to-back converter of VSWT
The PMSG is connected to the grid through a frequency converter, because it operates with a
variable frequency. This power electronics interface is constituted of two voltage source
converters connected by a dc-link.

The stator side converter (SSC) acts as a rectifier, transferring the power from the generator to
the DC-link controlling the electromechanical conversion.
The grid side converter (GSC) transfers the active power from the DC-link to the grid (50Hz).
Average models in d-q reference frame are used to modelling the converters [12]. The d-q
reference frame is oriented in such a way that the powers are given by (4).
PGSC = VGSC _ q I GSC _ d
QGSC = VGSC _ q I GSC _ q

3. Control systems
Fixed speed and variable speed wind turbines are considered in this paper. The aim of the
FSWT control system is to limit the extracted power at its rated value in normal operation, and
to reduce the extracted power during voltage dips. This control is performed through the pitch
control, which is the only control system considered in this paper for this technology.
For the VSWT, the control system has the objectives to maximize the extracted power in partial
load operation, to be robust in case of grid disturbance, and to protect the different components
from damage. These are performed through its power electronics interface. The flowchart of
VSWT is illustrated Fig. 2. It is noteworthy that in the results presented in this paper, the pitch
control system of the VSWTs is not used to reduce the extracted power during voltage dip (but
this action can be applied to reduce the power to dissipate by the DC-chopper). The principal
controls and particularly those which participate to LVRT are presented now.

Pitch control
Pitch control is considered for the both technologies studied in this paper. Its role is manly to
limit the extracted power from the wind at the turbine rated power (for wind speeds higher as the
rated one). The power controller of the turbine provides the pitch angle reference to the pitch
controller. The pitch controller is built of a position control loop with a rotational speed control
loop inside. Considering the pitch technology, the action on the pitch control is limited at 10°/s;
however, it is possible to operate at 20°/s in case of emergency [13].
When a voltage dip is detected the pitch angle is increased to reduce the extracted power, and
by this way to limit the increase of the turbine rotational speed (here, the maximum rotational
speed of the pitch angle is kept to 10°/s). Usually this action is stopped when the voltage is back
to a functional value. In this paper, this action is stopped 500 ms after that the maximal rotational
speed was detected, so when the rotational speed starts to decrease, in order to recover to
normal operation as soon as possible.

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

ΩT ΩG V s_dq V Grid_dq
Transmission (d,q) DC bus
ΓT ΓG Stator Side + Grid Side Converter
blade (permanent I s_dq Converter I SSC_DC DC- I GSC_DC + I GSC_dq
magnet chopper filter
β ref V s_dq_ref V GSC_dq_ref
Pitch control MPPT Ω G_ref ΓG_ref DC-chopper DC bus I GSC_d_ref
Full load Partial load Speed Vector
controller controller
controller control control
Management of
operatings points
Torque I s_q_ref Reactive I GSC_q_ref
controller controller

U C_ref Q GSC_ref
Management: Set points / Measures / Limitations / Protections

Fig. 2: Flowchart of the variable speed wind turbine

Back-to-back converter control
In VSWT, the stator side converter controls the generator rotational speed, and the grid side
converter independently controls the DC-bus voltage and the reactive power exchange with the
grid. The DC-chopper is presents to the DC-bus to protect it against the excess of energy.

Stator Side Converter (SSC):
The command of SSC is a classical currents control [8][10]. It controls the speed of the
generator by adjusting its voltage and its frequency. The rotational speed reference of the
generator comes from the MPPT system, it is provided to the rotational speed control loop
which provided the current references to the converters controllers. The magnetization is
ensured by the permanent magnets.
There is no additional control in this part of the control system to support LVRT.

Grid Side Converter (GSC):
The GSC controls the exchange of active power between the DC-bus and the grid by regulating
the DC-bus voltage. The DC-bus controller provides the reference of the grid current d-
component (see (4)).
The reactive power reference of the wind farm is provided from a voltage controller, which
controls the voltage at the point of common coupling (PCC). The reactive power reference of
the wind farm is dispatched equally among the VSWTs according to their available reactive
power [14]. As shown in [15], the capabilities of the GSC depend of the grid voltage. The priority
is given to the active power transfer, which involves that the capability to manage the reactive
power is variable. The reactive controller is illustrated Fig. 3.
When a voltage dip is detected the GSC stop to control the DC-bus voltage (the d-component of
the GSC current is set to zero), so the GSC stops the active power transfer to the grid. By this
way, the GSC can inject the maximum of reactive power to support the FSWTs in limiting the
voltage dip to theirs connecting points. Fig. 3 shows the generic DC-bus voltage controller. The
DC-bus voltage regulation is automatically ensured by the DC-chopper controller as presented

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

power controller
GSC reactive *
+ *
I GSC _q
I GSC _q
VGSC _ q I *GSC _ q = *
sign( I GSC ) min( I *GSC _ q , 2
_q _ rated _d

I GSC _ rated

U *c 0

+ PI *
- I GSC _d
Uc − I GSC _ rated 1

Voltage dips detection
DC-Chopper controller

Ucmax = 1.2 ⋅ U C − ∆U C
Uc 0
Ucmin = 1.2 ⋅ U C − ∆U C
Ucmax = U C − ∆U C u DC − chopper

0 1
Ucmin = U C − ∆U C
Voltage dips detection

Fig. 3: Modifications of some VSWT controllers to support LVRT of FSWTs
(GSC reactive power controller, DC-bus voltage controller, DC-chopper controller)

The DC-chopper is connected to the DC-link. In normal operation it is controlled to ensure the
safety of this one, limiting the DC-link voltage at 1.2·UC ± ∆UC. The increasing of the DC-link
voltage appears when there is an unbalance of power transfer between the SSC and the GSC.
This can occur when the capabilities of the GSC are limited (voltage dip foe instance) or
because of a command or power electronics component failure. In this case, the input power on
the DC-link can not be transfer to the grid, this leads to the rising of the DC-link voltage. In order
to protect the DC-link, the DC-chopper dissipates the excess of energy.

In this paper during voltage dip the control of the DC-link voltage through the GSC is stopped to
allow it to generate a maximum reactive power, as described previously. In this case, the DC-
link voltage is controlled at 1·UC ± ∆UC by the DC-chopper. The DC-chopper controller is
presented Fig. 3.

4. Simulations and results
In this study, the simulated wind farm is constituted of height variable speed wind turbines and
height fixed speed wind turbine connected on the same AC 20kV bus bar. This bus bar is
connected to the point of common coupling (PCC) by a line and a transformer. The architecture
of the system and the parameters are given Fig. 4.

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

63 kV / 20 kV 8 x 660 kW
20 MVA
R/X = 0.81 PMSG-based WT
Ucc = 12%

8 x 660 kW
IG-based WT

Fig. 4: Model system simulated

In all simulations, the voltage dip appears at the PCC, its shape corresponding approximately to
the E-On Netz fault ride-through requirements (Fig. 5) [16]. When the voltage dip occurs, the
PCC voltage becomes null for 150ms. Then the voltage rise to reach its nominal value 1.6s after
its occurring.

1 pu
PCC voltage

0 pu time
0 500 ms 2,1 s
Fig. 5: Voltage dips characteristic

Wind Farm Low Voltage Ride-Through
The results presented (Fig 6) show the capability of the mixed wind plant to ride-through the
voltage dip thanks to the design controls presented in this paper (green lines). These results are
compared with those without the specific controls (blue lines). This figure presents the WT
voltage, and the active and reactive power exchanged with the grid. It clearly shows the ability
of the wind farm (WF) to remain connected after this voltage dips, thanks to the controls
applied. For the case without control LVRT is not ensured, this is due to the behaviour of the
FSWTs as presented now.

FSWT: LVRT behaviour
Fig. 7 shows the behaviour of the FSWTs during the voltage drop, with and without action on
the pitch control. In the case without action (bleu lines), the rotational speed increases in a
dangerous way. If no action is led to reduce this rotational speed increasing, the protection
system must step in to stop the WT, and thus the ride-through would not be ensured.
The green lines (Fig 7) show the behaviour of the FSWTs with the whole controls presented
previously. The pitch angle is increased when the voltage dip is detected. By this way the power
is quickly reduced; as well the increasing of the rotational speed is limited. This action is stop
500ms after maximal value of the rotational speed. This delay corresponding to the time
necessary to detect the maximal rotational speed taking into account the torsional oscillations
which appear in response to the voltage dip. Then the rotational speed is stabilized and the
WTs recover quickly its normal operating mode without tripping protections.

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357


Voltage [pu]
Voltage [pu]
0.5 V PCC
0.6 V W Ts without control
0.4 V W Ts with control
V WTs without control 0
15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5 19
0.2 V WTs with control t [s]
0 2
15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
t [s]

Ω G [pu]

P WF [pu]

15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5 19
10 t [s]


pitch angle β [°]

-10 10
15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
t [s] 5

10 15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5 19
t [s]
0 0
QWF [pu]



-30 15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
t [s] t [s]

Fig. 6: WF behaviour during voltage dip Fig. 7: FSWTs behaviour during voltage dip
(bleu lines: without specific controls ; green lines: with (bleu lines: without specific controls ; green lines: with
specifics controls) specifics controls)

The magnetic behaviour of the induction generators can be observed through the reactive
power. The curves shows that the control of the turbine leads to a better re-magnetization the
induction generators limiting the consumption of reactive power and, by this way contributes to
a better voltage recovery.

VSWT behaviour
The operating, with and without specific controls, of a VSWT GSC is presented Fig 8. Without
specific controls (bleu lines) the GSC do not provide reactive power, and active power injected
to the grid is limited by the grid voltage during the voltage dip. In this case the DC-link voltage is
limited by the DC-chopper at 1.2·UC ± ∆UC.
When the specific control is applied, the injection of active power is stopped and the GSC
provides the maximum of available reactive power. So during voltage dip, the GSC operates as
a STATCOM with the difference that the control of the DC-link voltage is ensured by the DC-
chopper. These controls lead to a better voltage recovery, and thus take part to the support of

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357


Voltage [pu] 0


0.2 0.5

0 0
15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5 15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
t [s] t [s]



UC [pu]
0.2 1.1


15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5 15 15.5 16 16.5 17 17.5 18 18.5
t [s] t [s]

Fig. 8: Operating of a VSWT grid side converter

5. Conclusions
This paper presents the ability of a mixed wind plant to ride-through a voltage dip.
The mixed wind plant considered mixing two wind turbine technologies. Classical fixed speed
wind turbine based on induction generator, and variable speed wind turbine with direct drive and
full power converter based on permanent magnet synchronous generator. This paper focused
on the low voltage ride-through capability share the poor capability of the fixed speed wind
turbine to ensure this requirement.
Specific controls are proposed in order to ensure the low voltage ride through of the wind plant
in addition to the classical ones. These controls are concerning manly the power converters of
the variable speed wind turbine, because it was chose to use the grid side converters as
‘STATCOM’ during voltage dip to support the fixed speed wind turbines. In the same time, the
classical action on the pitch control is led on fixed speed wind turbines, to limit the rotational
speed increasing.
The simulations results a mixed wind plant constituted of height wind turbines of each
technology are presented. They showed that the wind plant was able to remain connected to
the grid follows a voltage dip thanks to the proposed controls.

The consideration of a mixed wind plant as proposed in this paper would be a solution to reduce
the costs of a wind project without violating new grid code requirements. A study about
economic aspects should be conducted taking into account different solutions of wind plant
(single technology with or with addition of power converters) to evaluate the economic viability
of these solutions.

Regarding the considered wind plant, different controls will be studied. It is real that there is no
a single solution to ensure the ride-through of voltage dip. Especially that this ability depends on
many parameters, as the wind farm architecture or the shape of the voltage dip which affect
many the re-magnetization of the turbine.

EWEC 2009 – Marseille – 16-19 march – Poster Session PO.357

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