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A Comprehensive Solar PV Hosting Capacity in MV

and LV Radial Distribution Networks


Bryan B. Navarro Maricar M. Navarro
Electrical Engineering Department Industrial Engineering Department
Technological Institute of the Philippines Technological Institute of the Philippines
Quezon City, Philippines Quezon City, Philippines
bryanbnavarro@yahoo.com maricar_misola@yahoo.com

Abstract—With the increasing adoption of solar PV generation of these facilities [2]-[5]. The common practice of most
system, it is essential to analyze the impacts to the distribution distribution utilities is the determination of Hosting Capacity
system especially if PV units is installed in both MV and LV (HC) and is defined as the maximum solar PV generation that
network. This paper develops a methodology that determines the can be integrated in the distribution system without causing
solar PV hosting capacity of a distribution network considering
any adverse effect on the normal system operation [3]-[4], [6]-
the effect between the interactions of MV and LV network at
different voltage levels. A comprehensive approach was used [10].
including complete LV network modeling characteristics. The The methodology to quantify solar PV hosting capacity is
interaction between the MV and LV network offers an advantage examined in the literature considering planning and
to other approaches described in the literature. A modified 25- optimization strategies [11]-[20]. Operational perspectives
bus test system with complete MV and LV network model was have been investigated considering smart technologies [21] and
tested and an integrated MV-LV power flow solution was used to pricing consideration [22]. Likewise, the optimal hosting
analyze the impacts on its interactions. Peak and off-peak load capacity of DG integration has been described with the
conditions of different customer types were also considered. inclusion of electric vehicles (EV) and energy storage systems
Aggregate installation was examined and it was shown that single
solar PV installation is sufficient for the hosting capacity
(ESS) employing different methodologies and techniques [23]-
quantification. Also, LV network hosting capacity installations [27].
have minimal effect on the MV network. Results show that the MV-LV hosting capacity interactions have been
main limitation of MV hosting capacity is the LV network investigated in the literature using real MV distribution
voltage problems. network. This was achieved by adopting a simplified integrated
MV-LV network analysis considering realistic generation and
Index Terms—Distribution network, hosting capacity, LV demand profiles. LV network modeling have not been included
network, MV network, solar PV generation system due to their number and lack of data and results show that LV
networks represent a major limitation to the MV hosting
I. INTRODUCTION capacity [28].
The presence of distributed generation (DG) has significant This paper aims to develop a methodology that determines
effect on distribution network such as efficiency, reliability, solar PV hosting capacity (HC) of a distribution network
power flow, voltage profile, protection, and stability. It brings considering the effect between the interactions of MV and LV
challenges to traditional distribution network especially if the network at different voltage levels. This paper properly
DG is installed both in medium voltage (MV) and low voltage modeled the LV network as a result of a comprehensive
(LV) distribution network. As distributed generation gains approach. A modified backward/forward sweep power flow
popularity, utilities and distribution companies are frequently solution was used to analyze the MV-LV interactions [29]. In
asked by customers for interconnection of these systems [1]. addition, the overall hosting capacity for MV and LV network
Distributed generation plays a key role in residential, is quantified based on the results of performance criteria of the
commercial, and industrial customers on the power system. DG distribution network.
provides an alternative supply of power. A rooftop solar
photovoltaic (PV) generation system is an example of DG that II. METHODOLOGY
can be connected to the utility’s service from its MV and LV The comprehensive solar PV hosting capacity is composed
distribution network. When numerous solar PV generation of two phases. First, the hosting capacity quantification in the
systems are installed, the impact could be detrimental to LV distribution network only. In this phase, all network
maintaining normal system operation. calculation is done only at LV neglecting the effect in the MV
Taking into consideration these conditions, distribution by taking a source voltage or root node as 1.00 per unit.
utilities investigate and analyze the impact of solar PV Second, the hosting capacity quantification in the MV
installations and develop different strategies that will served as distribution network including the results of LV distribution
a mandatory requirement to ensure safe and reliable integration network hosting capacity. Furthermore, the adopted

978-1-5386-1953-7/17/$31.00 ©2017 IEEE


descriptions and definitions to quantify the hosting capacity is location of solar PV installations in the MV network
presented in this paper. considering the effect in LV network by applying an integrated
The LV distribution network described in this paper is all MV-LV power flow solution [29]. This time, the result of the
service transformers connected at MV distribution network. overall HCLV will be installed at all service transformers. For
The secondary side of the service transformer will served as the every situation, power flow was performed to determine the
root node while the residential or commercial customers will maximum MV solar PV penetration level (SPVMV-Max) for each
served as the lateral nodes. Similarly, in the MV distribution location without causing any violation in line loading and
network, the secondary side of the distribution substation will customer voltages on both MV and LV network. The minimum
served as the root node while the service transformers and MV value of all SPVMV-Max will be the hosting capacity (HCMV) for
customers will served as the lateral nodes. the MV distribution network. The methodology used for MV
The solar PV penetration level (SPVLV and SPVMV) is distribution network hosting capacity is summarized in Fig. 2.
defined here as the kW or MW capacity of solar PV generation
systems connected in the LV and MV customers. The hosting
capacity (HCLV and HCMV) is defined here as the maximum
solar PV penetration that can be connected in the LV and MV
network without causing any violation in line loading and
customer voltages both in the LV and MV network. These
violation limits will served as the performance criteria of this
paper. The summary of criteria and corresponding violation
limits is shown in Table I.

TABLE I. CRITERIA AND VIOLATION LIMITS FOR HOSTING CAPACITY


ANALYSIS

Category Criteria Violation Limit


Maximum line loading at
Line Loading ≥ 100% normal rating
LV and MV lines
LV and MV customer
Customer Voltages ≥ 1.05 per unit
overvoltages

A. LV Distribution Network Hosting Capacity (HCLV)


The methodology implemented in this paper to quantify the
LV distribution network hosting capacity (HCLV) used an
extensive search algorithm to determine all possible sizes and
location to examine the effects of solar PV installations in the
LV distribution network [4]. The LV solar PV penetration level
(SPVLV) at each location is evaluated through the performance
criteria specified in Table I. The methodology used for LV
distribution network hosting capacity is summarized in Fig. 1.
The search algorithm contains the installation of a single solar
PV generation system within a given range of possible sizes
and location in the LV distribution network. For every
situation, secondary power flow was performed to determine
the maximum LV solar PV penetration level (SPVLV-Max) for
each location without causing any violation in line loading and
customer voltages. The minimum value of SPVLV-Max for all
locations will be the hosting capacity (HCLV-ST) of a particular
service transformer. The process continues until all service
transformers were evaluated. Once all HCLV-ST of every service Fig. 1. Flowchart of the LV network hosting capacity
transformer was determine, the minimum value of HCLV-ST will
be the overall hosting capacity for the LV distribution network
(HCLV). III. TEST SYSTEM DESCRIPTION
The comprehensive solar PV hosting capacity was tested
B. MV Distribution Network Hosting Capacity (HCMV)
using modified 25-bus radial distribution system [29]. The test
The methodology implemented to quantify the MV system has a complete MV and LV network modeling
distribution network hosting capacity (HCMV) used the same characteristics. It was modified by the inclusion of MV
approach as of that the LV hosting capacity. It uses an customers connected at different nodes on the system. The MV
extensive search algorithm to determine all possible sizes and network topology of the test system is shown in Fig. 3. An
example LV network topology of one of the service
transformers is shown in Fig. 4.

Fig. 3. MV network topology of the test system

Fig. 4. Example LV network topology

Fig. 2. Flowchart of the MV network hosting capacity


IV. TEST RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
The test system is short and lightly loaded and operates at a The effectiveness of the proposed methodology described
nominal voltage of 34.5kV. It consists of 20 service in this paper is discussed in this section. The entire simulation
transformers connected line-to-neutral primary and 240V line- was coded in Matlab platform.
to-line secondary that serves 414 residential and commercial
customers. There are 9 three-phase industrial MV customers A. LV Network Hosting Capacity Only
connected in wye-grounded configuration. The data of MV The search algorithm involves the installation of solar PV
customers are shown in the appendix. generation system within a given range of sizes and locations.
Furthermore, voltage dependency of loads such as constant The SPVLV capacity is gradually increased from 0 to 30kW
PQ, constant I, and constant Z were considered in this paper. (with an increment of 0.5kW) until a violation is identified
Realistic demand profiles of every customer types (residential, using a secondary power flow solution. The potential location
commercial, or industrial) were also considered. Maximum of SPVLV installations are all residential and commercial
solar PV generation capacity were assumed between 6:00am to customers within a given service transformer. For a given
6:00pm. Peak and off-peak load conditions of every customer number of customers (NC) and possible number of SPVLV sizes
types were also examined considering maximum generation (NS), a total of NC*NS secondary power flow were performed.
times. Peak and off-peak load conditions of combined The process continues until all service transformers were
residential and commercial customers are Wednesday of evaluated. Figure 5 shows the result of the hosting capacity for
6:00pm and Sunday of 7:00am, respectively, while industrial all service transformers during peak and off-peak load
customers’ peak and off-peak load conditions are Wednesday conditions.
of 2:00pm and Sunday of 5:00pm, respectively.
installation. In conclusion to that, it was safe to assume a single
installation for the entire hosting capacity analysis.

Fig. 5. LV network hosting capacity results (peak and off-peak conditions)

Based on Fig. 5, the minimum value of HCLV-ST for all


Fig. 6. LV network maximum voltage comparison (off-peak condition)
service transformers is 13.5kW (Service Transformer #19)
occur at off-peak load conditions. This also shows that off-peak
load conditions provide the worst-case scenario. This value C. MV Network Hosting Capacity Considering LV Network
will served as the overall LV distribution network hosting Hosting Capacity Results
capacity (HCLV). No line loading violation was seen on this The results in the LV network hosting capacity will be the
analysis. reference for the MV network hosting capacity. To be more
B. Aggregate Installation Analysis conservative and with the assumption of extreme conditions,
the value of HCLV will be installed at all service transformers
For the purpose of this paper, internal simulation was (in this case, 13.5kW). The installation of 13.5kW is located in
conducted to determine if aggregate installation of solar PV customer where the HCLV-ST is obtained. The impact on the
generation system will not cause any violation in line loading installation of HCLV in all parts of the LV network is examined
and customer voltages compared to that of single installation through the results of MV network voltages applying an
with the same capacity. This was examined during the off-peak integrated MV-LV power flow solution during peak and off-
load condition. peak load conditions. Figure 7 shows the comparison of MV
Aggregate installation of solar PV generation system is a voltages with and without HCLV integration.
combinatorial problem. For simplicity, this paper investigates
two customers with different solar PV penetration level
(SPVLV-1 and SPVLV-2). The reference for the aggregate
installation is the hosting capacity per service transformer
(HCLV-ST). Table II shows the distribution of penetration level
of two customers for HCLV-ST.

TABLE II. DISTRIBUTION OF HCLV FOR TWO CUSTOMERS IN AGGREGATE


INSTALLATION ANALYSIS

Scenario SPVLV-1 SPVLV-2


1 10% of HCLV-ST 90% of HCLV-ST
2 20% of HCLV-ST 80% of HCLV-ST

3 30% of HCLV-ST 70% of HCLV-ST


4 40% of HCLV-ST 60% of HCLV-ST

5 50% of HCLV-ST 50% of HCLV-ST

An extensive search algorithm is also apply in this analysis.


It was shown in Fig. 6 that maximum voltage was observed at
single solar PV installation compared to the aggregate Fig. 7. MV network voltage comparison
Based on Fig. 7, the integration of HCLV in all service MV and LV network provides an advantage to other
transformers has a minimal effect on the MV network voltages. approaches described in the literature. Peak and off-peak load
It shows that the methodology described in this paper to conditions of different customer types were also examined.
quantify the LV distribution network hosting capacity is Aggregate installation was also analyzed and it was shown that
effective. single solar PV installation is sufficient for the hosting capacity
The search algorithm is also applied in this methodology. quantification. Furthermore, LV network hosting capacity
The SPVMV capacity is gradually increased from 0 to 50MW installations have minimal effect on the MV network. Results
(with an increment of 500kW) until a violation is identified show that LV network voltages indicate a major limitation to
using an integrated MV-LV power flow solution. The potential the MV network hosting capacity.
location of SPVMV installations are all three-phase industrial
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