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Custom Power Systems and Software Platforms for

Wind Farms under Voltage Dips Situations
C. Álvarez

H. Amarís

O. Samuelsson

D. Flórez

L. González

Carlos III University

Carlos III University

Lund University

Carlos III University

Carlos III University

Abstract- Wind generation is one of the most important
renewable energy technologies. The most common type of wind
turbine is the fixed-speed directly connected to the grid. Faults
in the power system can originate the disconnection of wind
farms. Grid codes appear. Custom power systems, such as DSTATCOM and DVR, are needed for helping old wind farms to
withstand the sag. DFIG with the appropriate converter control
can comply with grid codes. For simulating and testing the
behavior of DFIG, an adequately software platform is needed.
Here, the comparison between Matlab SimPowerSystems Vs
Matlab-PSIM co-simulation for solving the problem is studied.
The PSIM-MATLAB co-simulation is found to be advantageous
for analyzing, e.g., DFIG converters in dynamic simulations.



Wind generation is one of the most important renewable
energy technologies. The most common type of wind turbine
is the fixed-speed induction generator connected directly to
the grid. A drawback of wind turbines is their operation
during grid faults. Faults in the power system originate a
voltage dip at the connection point of the wind turbine. The
dip results in an increase of the current in the stator windings.
The wind turbine protection system disconnects the wind
turbine because of that current increase.

turbines is getting so high that it is not possible to disconnect
an entire Wind Farm without affecting the system stability.
Electrical utilities and System Operators (REE, E·ON, etc.)
have specified in their recent requirements that wind turbines
have to offer ride-through capability under severe voltage
dips [1],[2]. Instead of disconnecting from the grid under
fault conditions, wind turbines should be able to follow the
characteristic described in the grid codes and shown in Fig. 1.
and Fig. 2. Only when the grid voltage goes below the curve,
the turbine is allowed to disconnect. In any other case the
turbine should remain connected to the grid without
consuming active or reactive power during the disturbance.
If wind farms are unable to withstand voltage drops for a
limited time, they will be disconnected from the system and
that may cause a cascading voltage fall and the break-down of
part or all the power system.

In countries with high wind energy percentage, such as
Germany or Spain, grid codes appear for setting rules to
avoid the disconnection problem. Then, custom power
devices are needed for helping wind turbine to be able to
withstand the sag.
DFIG with an appropriate back to back converter control
can comply with grid codes. For testing the low-voltage ride
through capability of variable speed wind turbine generators
the converter controls have to be adequately simulated. In this
paper, the comparison between Matlab SimPowerSystems Vs
Matlab-PSIM co-simulation for solving those models is
studied. After this study, it can be deduced that PSIM
improves MATLAB simulations and PSIM-MATLAB cosimulation is found to be advantageous for analyzing e.g.
DFIG converters in dynamic simulations.

Fig. 1. Proposed voltage-time curve by REE.[1]


Traditionally, wind turbines were disconnected from the
grid when an abnormal grid voltage occurred at the Wind
Farm terminals. In some areas, the concentration of wind

Fig. 2. Proposed voltage-time curve by E•ON. [2]

The D-STATCOM is considered for this application. For developing this new technology. are based on DFIG. Either device can be connected at any distribution voltage level to protect whole or large portions of a plant with a single solution. Depending on the control strategy. the most important systems are the DistributionSTATic synchronous COMpensator (D-STATCOM) and the Dynamic Voltage Restorer (DVR). 1432/2002. “ Recently. POWER ELECTRONIC SOLUTIONS In the Spanish case. B. 5. They are available in sizes from 2 MVA to 10 MVA in 2 MVA increments. A. custom power systems are being used helping old wind farms to cope TSO grid codes. 4. 4. C. New wind farms. new technologies are proving that with a proper control over the DFIG converters. in E·ON grids. DFIG wind turbine scheme. 3. As an example. For a 400MVAr one. Wind turbines should withstand longer voltage sags (500ms @20%U/UN) while E·ON grid code is more restrictive in terms of voltage. Old wind farms have until 2009 for adapting themselves in order to cope with these grid code rules and to get the economic complement [1]. Wind turbines. The voltage magnitude is restored to the nominal value. the low cost mechanical switched cap banks and transformer tap changers are used to address issues related to stability and power quality. Generally. the DSTATCOM device can be used for flicker or harmonic mitigation or even for voltage dip mitigation. It injects a voltage signal which is added to the grid side voltage in order to provide the downstream side of the bus with sinusoidal voltage. more restrictive in terms of voltage drop. They share the same basic hardware and use modular power electronics. mainly because of the necessity of rating the VSI for large current. Shunt compensation (D-STATCOM) Fig. “ and the DVR “Fig. an appropriate software platform is needed. “ are complementary devices which provide simultaneous voltage control and power quality functions. 5.D. However. the typical investment costs for a STATCOM are around 70€/kVAr for a 100 MVAr device. . The D-STATCOM “Fig. The application of D-STATCOM devices for voltage dip mitigation in the event of very severe fault conditions has not been very used comparing with DVR. new wind farms have to comply with the grid codes requirements for getting an economic complement. [4] Fig. D-STATCOM Conventionally. For that reason. That complement will be equivalent to the 5% of the average energy price defined in the 2nd article of the Spanish law R. Among the custom power solutions. should withstand deeper voltage sags.Comparing both of the figures. although these devices help improve the power factor of wind farms and steady-state voltage regulation. Fig. Series compensation (DVR). DVR The DVR is a device used mainly for voltage dip mitigation and for restoring the distorted voltage signal connected in series with the Wind Farm at the PCC. able to withstand voltage sags. the power quality issues cannot be solved satisfactorily by them because these devices are not fast enough [5]. the costs decrease to 50€/kVAr [3]. because it provides fast response time (1~2 cycles) and superior voltage support capability with its nature of voltage source [6]. but shorter (150ms @0%U/UN). DFIG The DFIG is a standard wound rotor induction machine with its stator windings directly connected to the grid and its rotor windings connected to the grid through a frequency converter. DVR AND DFIG. it can be seen that REE grid code is more restrictive in terms of time than E·ON grid code. III. D-STATCOM. DFIG could be a standalone solution to ride-through voltage sag. the DVR is rated according to the amount of compensation being injected. “Fig. 3.

g. D. Within those. It is powerful in power electronics simulations and it does not use much RAM memory space. computational time. this dynamic simulation has to consider very short time constants in the converter controls consequently these would require an excessively short integration time step that will make the time required to run simulations unacceptably long. It can provide. Model under study In this paper.65mF. Matlab/SIMULINK – PSIM interaction. etc. V. The time for setting up the model is reduced and the merits of different software are used. from wind energy to automobile industry. power losses on semiconductors. . -Rotor side converter inductance=550 µH. ” B. memory needs and time step issues are compared. A. branches. all junction temperatures. using special modules. -Rotor side max output voltage=400V. Interaction Working with Matlab/SIMULINK for control design and PSIM for power converter simulation in the same model is possible and recommended because PSIM accelerates Matlab SimPowerSystems simulations. Back to back converter data. SOFTWARE PLATFORM COMPARISON This software platform is especially useful for power converter design. 7. C. etc. However. The main elements are: • • • • • Power source (representing the power system) Power electronic bridges Dc-link Rotor Dc-link voltage control. It has been applied wherever power electronics are. machines. That is not offered in other software tools.g. Matlab SIMULINK is a well-known software tool used in many scientific fields. DFIG back to back converter main scheme. However. It can be seen in “Fig. The scheme of the interaction can be seen in Fig. gate voltage. electric models can be found. The electric library is called Matlab SimPowerSystems. These models have been continuously improved in each update in order to fulfill the emergent requirements. 6. SIMULINK Control + +SimCoupler (Psim link) >> plot (ASCII – output file) PSIM Power electronic model SIMVIEW OUTPUT FILE Fig. -Power source resistance=0. The Matlab control toolbox is flexible and powerful but it has a great amount of other toolboxes. power transformers. 7. Inside the losses module. the module provides all the losses on the semiconductors. for simulating the DFIG converter. where control is crucial. Matlab SimPowerSystems and PSIM/SIMULINK cosimulation under normal conditions and conditions specified by the REE grid code. -Rotor side resistance=10 Ω.. SIMULINK.1Ω. some important information. -DC-link voltage=500V. e. A. DFIG back to back converter behavior is simulated both in PSIM. Based on this data. The main objective is to reduce as much as possible the computational time taking advantage of the PSIM software capabilities maintaining the control features provided by MATLAB.IV. all semiconductor data is introduced. only the DFIG back to back converter has been simulated in order to compare the different software platforms. SOFTWARE UNDER STUDY Matlab The control simulations are fundamental in any dynamic simulation in wind farm applications. -Grid side converter inductance=500µH. -Power source voltage=370 V. Waveforms. gate resistance. -DC-link capacitor=1. moreover when running dynamic simulation in DFIG wind turbines. SimPowerSystems. all kind of switches. max) -Frequency=50Hz. (Line voltage. Fig. loads. 6. In its library. PSIM has been used in many areas. e. PSIM is suitable for power electronics circuit simulation. many electric models can be found. the integration time step must be very short and this requires a big RAM memory space and a long time to run the dynamic simulation. Matlab. Wind farms with their power electronic converters have been modeled with detailed component models for different applications. but it is not very convenient to build up a control circuit [7]. PSIM PSIM is a software tool widely applied in power electronics simulations. DC bus voltage.

in Spanish) Red Eléctrica de España. pp.3 “Requisitos de respuesta frente a huecos de tensión de las instalaciones eólicas”.” IEEE PES TDCE. Digest no. The computational time and memory needs are. Fig. the computational time is substantially reduced. Gyugyi. 1. 2006 . Simulations PSIM provides the optimal time step for simulating the system compromising accuracy and simulation velocity. ” where Matlab has been only used and in “Fig. W. "PSIM and SIMULINK Co-simulation for Three-level Adjusta-ble Speed Drive Systems. 2006.. High and extra high voltage. Now. A summary of properties is shown in Table I. The simulation takes a few seconds in all cases. [6] N. L. [7] Zhang Yongchang. vol. Smith. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Authors acknowledge the financial support of the Spanish Science and Education Ministry under contract ENE200509375-03-03. Baihua.B. 19981/189. and D. 2001 [4] R. 2003. Hingorani. Siemens Power Transmission and Distribution Group. The first 25ms of the simulation can be seen in “Fig. 2. 1.5s and the voltage depth is 80%. • Memory problems decrease using PSIM-Matlab. but only the most significant 25ms are shown. London.-2 Nov. 1998. D. the voltage-time curve is the specified in [1]. Buxton. Yuan Liqiang. 2. The PSIM optimal time step was 10μs.3.1-5. 1. O’Leary. "FACTS: For Cost Effective and Reliable Transmission of Electrical Energy". G. Software PSIM MATLAB BOTH Time 14min 1h 25min 26min Memory 7996KB 938108KB 290424KB Control Regular Optimal Optimal Software PSIM MATLAB BOTH Time 100% 607% 185% Memory 100% 11732% 3632% Control Regular Optimal Optimal VI.497. no. Habur. as the figures show. CONCLUSION The following conclusions have been reached: • This paper has presented custom power devices that can be connected at the PCC of the wind farm. "Protection from voltage dips with the dynamic voltage restorer. Zhao Zhengming. or for mitigating voltage flicker. Brooks. All the simulations were done with the same time step. • For voltage dip mitigations in wind turbine applications the most suitable custom power device is the DVR." Power Electronics and Motion Control Conference. especially in DFIG under grid code conditions simulations where the time simulation is long. E. • For increasing the transient stability margin in the event of a voltage dip. Results are stored in text files freeing the RAM memory. 28 Oct. L. •Longer simulation for comparing the different platforms: Another simulation is done for comparing the different platforms. MEMORY AND CONTROL CAPABILITIES COMPARATIVE. IPEMC '06. vol. DC-link & AC Voltage from PSIM-MATLAB co-simulation. Understanding FACTS: Concepts and Technology of Flexible AC Transmission Systems. ” with cosimulation.O. 2001.1. “Voltage impacts of distributed wind generation on rural distribution feeders. 2000. in these simulations.12. pp. 492. for regulating the voltage at the PCC or the total plant power factor. August.3 seconds. [2] Grid Code." in IEE Half Day Colloquium on Dynamic Voltage Restorer. Zhang Haitao. Aug. The results. enough to reach the steady state conditions. REFERENCES [1] P. TABLE I SIMULATION TIME. CES/IEEE 5th International . the voltage dip is a three phase fault at t=1s and it lasts 0. ABSOLUTE AND RELATIVE TERMS. IEEE Press. are similar.ON Netz GmbH. • Using PSIM linked with Matlab/SIMULINK for simulating power electronic devices. Germany. very similar. The simulation time was 17s. Bayreuth. The difference in this field will be clearer in the next simulation. D-STATCOM is the most suitable custom power device. •Simulation under normal conditions: The starting of the back to back converter is simulated during 0. [3] K. [5] J. (Operational Procedure 12. DC-link & AC Voltage from MATLAB simulation. Fig.