2021 article

A Zonal Volt/VAR Control Mechanism for High PV Penetration Distribution Systems


By: A. Alrushoud n, C. McEntee n & N. Lu‚ÄČ

author keywords: distribution feeders; fast incremental clustering; voltage sensitivity; zonal Volt/VAR control
Source: Web Of Science
Added: July 26, 2022

This paper presents a zonal Volt/VAR control scheme for regulating voltage in unbalanced 3-phase distribution systems using inverter-based resources (IBR). First, the dependency between nodal voltage changes and IBR reactive power injections is derived via voltage sensitivity studies. Then, a fast-incremental clustering method is used to divide the distribution circuit into weakly-coupled zones based on correlations between nodal voltage sensitivities. The weak-coupling allows the voltage to be regulated independently within each zone using a rule-based voltage controller to dispatch IBR for voltage corrections. Simulation results on actual distribution feeder show that the proposed zone-based Volt/VAR control method maintains system voltages within their operational limits while reducing the runtime of the Volt/VAR controller from tens of second to a couple of milliseconds compared with centralized, optimization-based Volt/VAR control methods.