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Towards Smart Power Networks


Lessons learned from European research FP5 projects

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Interested in European research? RTD info is our quarterly magazine keeping you in touch with main developments (results, programmes, events, etc.). It is available in English, French and German. A free sample copy or free subscription can be obtained from: European Commission Directorate-General for Research Information and Communication Unit B-1049 Brussels Fax (32-2) 29-58220 E-mail: Internet:

EUROPEAN COMMISSION Directorate-General for Research Directorate J – Energy Unit 2 – Energy Production and Distribution Systems Contact: Manuel Sánchez-Jiménez E-mail: Internet:


Towards Smart Power Networks Lessons learned from European research FP5 projects

Directorate-General for Research 2005

Sustainable Energy Systems

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List of abbreviations






Power quality, reliability and security


ICT builds Smart Electricity Networks


Laboratory activities and pre-standardisation


Pilot Installations and field tests


Socio-economic issues


Further RTD activities


List of FP5 projects


List of abbreviations CENELEC European Committee for Electrotechnical


communication speed unit, kilobits per second

Standardisation CHP

Combined Heat and Power


Low Voltage


Distributed Energy Resources


Large-Scale Virtual Power Plant


Distributed Generation


Medium Voltage


Distribution System Operator


Non-Governmental Organisation


European Research Area


Organisation for Economic Cooperation


European Union


Flexible Alternating Current Transmission


Research and Development



Renewable Energy Sources


European Framework Programme for RTD


Research and Technological Development


High Voltage


Smart Grid Automation Device


High Voltage Direct Current


Small and Medium-sized Enterprise


Information and Communication Technologies


Transmission System Operator

and Development

Foreword Acknowledgments This brochure has been prepared with the contribution of the research team involved in the EU-Cluster IRED: JĂźrgen Schmid and Philipp Strauss, ISET - Germany Nikos Hatziargyriou, NTUA - Greece Hans Akkermans, EnerSearch - Netherlands Britta Buchholz, MVV - Germany Frits van Oostvoorn, Martin Scheepers, ECN - Netherlands RaĂşl Reyero, IKERLAN - Spain John Chadjivassiliadis - Greece


04 05


European energy research is helping to transform the energy system into one which will be more sustainable and more compatible with the ecosystem. Within this framework, energy research is a key factor for the development of a sustainable European economy in the context of the Lisbon Strategy, a major priority for the European Union which is intended to boost competitiveness, job creation, social cohesion and environmental sustainability. Wind generators, fuel cells, photovoltaic panels and micro-turbines – to mention just a few – are new forms of electricity generation currently being developed. They make up the so-called Renewable Energies and Distributed Generation; some of which are small or mediumsized, while others are intermittent or even stochastic. Today, wind power and Combined Heat and Power are reaching a competitive level with the traditional forms of energy generation. Maybe tomorrow we will be talking about micro-turbines, fuel cells and photovoltaics. This brochure describes the lessons learned from around 50 research projects under the Target Action ‘Integration of renewable energies and distributed generation into European electricity networks’, in the EU’s Fifth Framework Programme (FP5). These projects are seen as the starting point for the development of the first generation of components and new architectures for interactive electricity grids. Among them is the EU cluster IRED, which gathered the efforts of more than 100 participants. It was launched at the beginning of 2001 to coordinate and disseminate the new knowledge generated among the partners themselves with national programmes active in this area, as well as stimulating relations with similar partnerships worldwide. Many projects in this FP5 Target Action started in 2001 and have achieved their initial objectives very success-

fully. Activities in this area are continuing in FP6 through very promising large Integrated Projects and Networks of Excellence, in which more and more utilities and other stakeholders in the electricity sector – usually competitors in the international market – are showing their readiness to share know-how and effort. Achieving maximum European research power requires the development of common and coherent views among stakeholders. The setting up of the Technology Platform for the Electricity Networks of the Future in 2005 is one way of answering this need. A Strategic Research Agenda is also under preparation which includes the RTD priorities for the future. Finally, present discussions for energy research in FP7 have identified a research area, referred to as ‘Smart Energy Networks’, as a means of continuing current RTD efforts at European level. The initial objectives of this new area are “To increase the efficiency, safety and reliability of the European electricity and gas system and networks, e.g. by transforming the current electricity grids into an interactive (customers/operators) service network, and to remove the technical obstacles to the large-scale deployment and effective integration of distributed and renewable energy sources”. The challenges of this research area are very ambitious, but the expected contribution to the integration of Renewable Energies and Distributed Generation in the electricity grids could lead to very important socioeconomic benefits.

Pablo Fernández Ruiz Director Directorate-General for Research


Towards Smart Power Networks



06 07

Introduction Energy research in the EU Framework Programme

FP5 research projects for integration of DER

Today, Europe’s energy supply is characterised by structural weaknesses and geopolitical, social and environmental shortcomings, particularly as regards security of supply and climate change. Whilst energy remains a major component of economic growth, such deficiencies can have a direct impact on EU growth, stability and the well-being of Europe’s citizens.

Projects in this area of FP5 are helping to define and validate new system architectures and advanced components for future European electricity networks based on a large share of DER, while maintaining the high level of reliability and quality in the present networks. The FP5 projects which were supported financially were sorted into the following Research Priorities:

These three elements provide the main drivers for energy research, within the context of sustainable development, a high-level EU objective that links economic development, protection of the environment and social justice.

New approach for large-scale implementation of DER in Europe Future electricity networks require novel concepts and systems for their planning, design, monitoring and control architectures. The main objectives of projects in this Research Priority were to design, develop and validate novel architectures, components and DER solutions needed for future bidirectional (customers/operators) service networks.

Energy, at the root of all human activity, holds the key to reconciling these often opposing dimensions. Developing and making better use of clean energy technologies, by investing in R&D, will help to meet the Lisbon and Göteborg objectives and to reinvigorate and modernise our economy by contributing to technological innovation, increasing European competitiveness, unlocking vast potential global markets and thus creating wealth and new, skilled jobs. In helping to meet these goals, which are by no means exhaustive, energy research will contribute directly to the success of EU policy and, in particular, the achievement of current EU targets, which will need to become even more ambitious when looking towards 2020, 2030 and beyond. For example: achieving an 8% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2008-2012 (Kyoto); increasing the share of renewable energy systems (RES) from 6% to 12% of gross energy consumption by 2010; increasing the share of electricity from RES to 21% of gross electricity consumption by 2010 (from 14% in 2003); increasing the share of liquid biofuels to 5.75% by 2010; and reducing energy intensity by a further 1%/year until 2010.

Energy storage technologies and systems for gridconnected applications The aim of this Research Priority focused on the development and improvement of cost-effective high-power energy storage systems based on a wide area of technologies in grid-connected applications to facilitate the large penetration of DER. Development of key enabling technologies required for interactive energy networks with high power quality and security of service. This Research Priority included developments of power electronic devices and cable systems, high temperature superconductors (components, devices and systems), and new Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for distributed energy networks. Projects financed under these FP5 areas play a key role in transforming the conventional electricity transmission and distribution grid into a unified and interactive energy service network using common European planning and operation methods and systems.

Towards Smart Power Networks

The achieved results of projects financed in FP5 in this area will impact on the three drivers described above – economic growth, security of supply, and climate change.

The FP5 Cluster IRED A coordinated effort in this RTD area started a few years ago with the establishment of a EU cluster of seven key FP5 projects ( or The Cluster IRED, with over 100 partners and a total budget of 34 million euro, was launched with the aim of coordinating lessons learned and new knowledge generated by these projects with national programmes active in this area, as well as with similar partnerships in the USA, Canada, Japan and other OECD countries.

The most important elements for the success of IRED are : Systematic exchange of information by improving links to relevant research, regulatory bodies, and policies and schemes at European, national, regional and international levels. Setting up strategic actions such as trans-national R&D co-operation and common initiatives on standards, test procedures and education. Identifying the most important research topics in the field of integration of DER, and taking actions to address these.

Lessons learned The main lessons learned from EU FP5 projects in this area can be grouped as follows: The change in emphasis from “connecting” to “integrating” DER into the overall system operation – and its development – is critical. This represents a shift from the traditional, central-control culture

to a new, more distributed control paradigm which requires that DER can no longer be considered as a passive appendage to the network. The electricity networks of the future will be based to a large extent on new power electronics and ICT applications, some of which have already been in use in other sectors of industry for decades. Synergies from these new developments and specific ICT solutions for the power sector, such as distributed intelligent control, a new internet generation model, etc., which are still in their initial stages today, should be further developed. Fully integrated DER will have the potential of delivering a number of benefits for Europe, such as reduced central generation capacity; enhanced transmission and distribution network capacity; improved system security; reduced overall costs and CO2 emissions; and shaping Europe’s competitiveness worldwide. However, validation examples of those benefits are needed to satisfy their credibility and acceptability to the stakeholders. Reliability, safety and quality of power are the main issues linked to the large-scale deployment of DER. Their effect on European transmission networks, cannot be neglected and must be addressed with a comprehensive system approach. Major technological – operation, protection, control, etc. – and regulatory changes will be needed in Europe to accommodate this new open and unified electricity service market approach during the coming decades. Finally, the establishment of the IRED cluster at the early stage of this FP5 area has resulted in the better pooling of dispersed resources and expertise and has enabled the undertaking of more substantial and more rewarding research initiatives. Under FP5 and FP6, important projects and actions, several of which are presented in this brochure, have benefited from improved information exchange and coordination provided by the IRED cluster.


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The EC support budget to projects in this area in FP5 and FP6 With a budget of almost one milllion euro, projects in the energy area under FP5 (1998-2002) are well advanced, with many entering the critical phase of exploiting and disseminating their results. The total expenditure on European RTD projects for the large-scale integration of Renewable Energy Sources (RES) and Distributed Generation (DG) within FP5 is of the order of 130 million euro, with an EC contribution of about 67 million euro. The main objective of FP6, which runs from 2002 to 2006, is to contribute to the creation of a truly European Research Area (ERA). Thematic Priority 6.1 ‘Sustainable energy systems’ has a total budget of around 890 million euro. Currently, about 91 million euro matched by public and private investments, with EU funding of about 50 million euro, has been awarded to RTD projects for the largescale integration of RES and DG in FP6.

Power quality, reliability and security


ca Towards Smart Power Networks


Power quality, reliability and security

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Power quality, reliability and security DER and continuity of electricity supply Satisfying and responding to customer requirements is one of the key features of the liberalised electricity markets. In particular, the continuity of the electricity supply is a major factor for competitiveness, public health, safety, etc. In the traditional network design approach, the performance of the medium- and lowvoltage networks has a dominant impact on the quality of service seen by the end customers, while faults in high-voltage (HV) distribution and transmission networks do not normally affect the continuity of supply for customers connected to medium-voltage (MV) and low-voltage (LV) networks. In the majority of EU countries, more than 80% of the customer interruptions and the customer minutes lost are caused at one of these voltage levels. The significant impact that these networks have on the number or duration of interruptions is primarily driven by the radial design of these networks. On the other hand, MV voltage networks are generally built following so-called n-1 security criteria, meaning that an interruption caused by a fault of a single MV network component should be restored much more quickly by switching (manually or automatically, depending on the size of the load lost) the lost load on to a sound part of the network. This clearly requires some redundancy in MV networks. Similarly, HV networks are often built with respect to n-2 security criteria.


Security is the ability of the system to remain in operation after sudden disturbances that may occur, like short circuits, loss of equipment, etc. It may take into account any actions causing such disturbances, such as human errors, extreme weather conditions, terrorist activity, etc. Another definition that gives a general sense of what power system planners and operators might intuitively understand by security is “the art and science of ensuring the survival of power systems”. Security is often measured by deterministic indices that may include the severity of situations but ignore the likelihood. Examples are “percentage reserve” used in spinning reserve assessment, and the “n-1” or “n-2” criteria used in transmission operation and planning (meaning that the system should continue to function after a loss of 1 or 2 circuits).

System reliability is the ability of the system to satisfy customer requirements in terms of power and energy, considering forced outages and the scheduled maintenance outages of the system’s equipment. However, the term reliability is very specific in meaning and is accepted as being defined by a set of probabilistic indices even if only expected (average or mean) values are reported or predicted. Reported indices include frequency of interruptions, duration of interruptions, annual unavailability, and load and energy not supplied. Today, a number of indices quantify the system operational performance, such as the Loss of Load Expectation (LOLE, hours/year), Loss of Energy Expectation (LOEE, MWh/year), Expected Demand Not Supplied (EDNS, MW/year), Frequency of Loss of Load (FLOL, occ/year), and the Energy Index of Reliability (EIR).

Power quality deals with the phenomena of various deviations in voltage or current waveform or/and shifts in phase. These deviations could result in failure or the mis-operation of customer equipment. The most important aspect refers to the quality of the voltage supplied to the customer, and includes both steady state variations, like voltage regulation, harmonic distortion and flicker, but also disturbances, such as transients, voltage sags (dips) and swells that could lead to interruptions of supply (link with reliability).
















Figure 2.1: DER potential to increase security of supply

DER integration into operation practices Levels of DER penetration in some parts of the EU are such that it is beginning to undermine integrity and security of the system, especially in the form of large wind parks. This is because the emphasis has been on connecting DER to the network, rather than integrating it into the overall system operation. It is only recently that transmission grid codes have started imposing Low (or Zero) Voltage Ride Through (LVRT) capabilities, voltage support and active power reserves on the new wind farms, showing a gradual change in attitude. Nevertheless, the ability of intermittent power generation to displace the capacity of large conventional (thermal) plant, the increased flexibility in demand and balancing services due to wind variability, requirements for additional transmission capacity and system support services (grid

Clearly, large penetration of DER has the potential a displace considerably fraction of energy produced by large central plant, but the present passive approach will be unable to provide the flexibility and controllability needed. Hence, if nothing is done, conventional large-scale power plants remain the source of control for electricity operation assuring integrity and security of the system.

codes) have still not been adequately studied, so that the full exploitation of DER for maintaining high levels of security and reliability can be achieved. New, advanced tools and methods (on-line, probabilistic, etc.) are needed to face these challenges. Similarly, DER at lower voltage levels can take over some of the responsibilities from large conventional power plants and provide the flexibility and controllability necessary to support secure system operation. However, such requirements to support the system in critical conditions are not requested from DER at the distribution level, and current operating practices only ensure that these are promptly disconnected, in case of disturbances.

in brief

One of the potential key benefits of DER, being connected at the MV and LV networks, is an increase in service quality, reliability and security, providing DER is integrated in an intelligent way in the power system planning practices (Figure 2.1). However, the overall approach to system operation and development, and in particular to provision of security of supply services, has yet to change, and no real attempt has been made to integrate DER into system operation. Similarly, DER developers and operators are principally concerned with energy production from DER plant and, given the current incentives framework, are not motivated to provide any services associated with system security.

in brief

Towards Smart Power Networks

By fully integrating DER into network operation, it will be able to displace not only more expensive energy produced by central generation, but also to enhance flexibility and controllability in facing critical situations. To achieve this, the operating practice of distribution networks will need to change from passive to active, demanding a shift from traditional central control philosophy to a new more distributed control paradigm. Although transmission system operators have historically been responsible for system security, quality and reliability, enhancement by DER will require system operators to develop active network management in order to participate in providing system security.




Power quality, reliability and security

Results of DISPOWER project have shown that with intelligent management, distributed generation can improve power quality as well as economic operation (Figure 2.2)

Figure 2.2: Online monitoring and operation of components in the pilot experiences in Stutensee, Germany.

Figure 2.3: The Microgrid concept.


This will present a radical shift from the traditional central control philosophy to a new more distributed control paradigm. Such a control paradigm is provided by Microgrids (Figure 2.3), i.e. systems at LV that can be operated interconnected to the grid, or in an autonomous way if disconnected from the main grid, providing continuity of supply in case of upstream faults. At MV level, the coordination of several Microgrids and the operation of Virtual Power Plants, i.e. coordination of several DER so that the full functionalities of central power plants are obtained, allows DER to take the responsibility for delivery of security services in co-operation with, and occasionally taking over the role of, central generation.


Towards Smart Power Networks

Research in Europe: power quality, security and reliability enhancement by DER In FP5, some problems linked to power quality, reliability and security have been studied in the following projects:

In MICROGRIDS project, a number of innovative technical solutions for microgrids operation and control, especially under islanded operation, have been investigated. It has been shown that the operation of DER, if managed and coordinated efďŹ ciently, can provide distinct beneďŹ ts to the overall system performance. Centralised and decentralised control techniques, based on agent technologies, present the microgrid to the grid as a controlled entity that is operated as a single aggregated load. Given attractive remuneration, it can support the network, providing services such as a small source of power or ancillary services, when required or when market conditions favour it. From the customer’s point of view, microgrids provide both thermal and electricity needs and, in addition, have

the potential to enhance local reliability. They can improve power quality by supporting voltage and reducing voltage dips, and can lower the costs of energy supply, when compared to spot peak market prices. Preliminary studies performed on a ‘typical’ microgrid, comprising microturbines, wind turbines, fuel cells and photovoltaics, have shown similar reliability indices for an 80% reliable line feeding the microgrid compared to a 100% reliable feeder without DER and cost reductions compared to spot market prices on some days. In DISPOWER project, a power quality (PQ) management algorithm was developed that is able to solve voltage limit violations in low-voltage grids by optimising control of generators, storage units and controllable loads (Figure 2.4). The algorithm automatically adapts its behaviour in the light of network performance by changing its frequency of scheduled tasks and sensitivity limits without requiring triggering by external control. As shown by a variety of tests, the number of 10-minute periods that voltage exceeds the limits, is reduced by approximately 80% on average.







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J 1 DPT 5)%


J 1 DPT 5)%

J 1 DPT 5)%




Figure 2.4: DISPOWER Project developed a power quality management algorithm to avoid exceeding the voltage band by intelligent load management based on real-time information on the grid status.

Power quality, reliability and security

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Wiring for Central Photovoltaic (PV) Inverter Series Changed


Board and measurement for reactive power injection implemented

Figure 2.5: DGFACTS Prototype


Most DER are interconnected to the power system via power electronic interfaces. Power electronics provide several possibilities to enhance power quality by voltage support in withstanding voltage dips, active filtering, phase balancing, etc. The development of new concepts for the management of the quality of DER-dominated networks, based on FACTS and Custom Power Technologies, has been investigated in DGFACTS project. The key innovation is the use of a set of modular systems to optimally improve the stability and quality of supply in each electric power distribution network according to its characteristics and requirements. Looking at their economic justification, FACTS can be easily integrated into the network (Figure 2.5). Specific devices could be also profitable in the near future, especially when the costs of the different network factors causing a lack of reliability will need to be compensated for.


ICT builds smart electricity networks

Towards Smart Power Networks

ICT builds smart electricity networks

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Universal connectivity First, ICT creates universal connectivity between a large variety of grid devices, including power production resources, network nodes, and local loads. This provides new and better technical foundations for distant control of highly distributed networks on an increasingly large scale. Universal connectivity is a key enabler for the proper management of any future energy network.

Services over the internet and web Second, ICT provides new ways for real-time interaction between suppliers, distributors, and customers in the grid. This is due, in particular, to the internet and web. Timely and high-quality information on the status of the grid will become much more readily accessible for all stakeholders. But beyond monitoring, the internet enables new web services based on two-way communication between suppliers and customers. Automated demand response, balancing services, and dynamic pricing, buying and selling of power in realtime are just a few of the promising applications to come in future due to advanced ICT solutions.

Increasing the intelligence of the grid The third trend in ICT for power is that new techniques in hardware and – even more so – in software, effectively inject intelligence into the grid. The electricity system inherited from the 19th and 20th centuries has been a reliable but centrally coordinated system. With the liberalisation of European markets and the spreading of local, distributed and intermittent renewable energy resources, top-down central control of the grid no longer meets modern requirements. Tomorrow’s grid needs decentralised ways for information, coordination, and control of the grid to serve the customer. ICT is central to achieving these innovations.

in brief

ICT builds smart electricity networks FP5 projects have demonstrated that: Established Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), including the internet and web, are already capable today of catering for many of the functionalities of the future electricity network. However, the European power sector has not yet reaped all the benefits from the ICT opportunities currently available. Software agents and electronic markets are advanced ICT technologies that enable distributed control of electricity networks and make the grid intelligent and self-organising. Further research and technology development are needed on issues of interfacing, integrating and protecting power systems interlinked with ICT information systems, in a robust, dependable and standardised way. This is to be done, for example, in the context of integrating new concepts such as the large-scale virtual power plant. Also, attention must be paid to how to align the emerging new business and service models in the European market environment with new ICT, internet/web, and electrical architectures.

Research in Europe: making the critical infrastructures of power and ICT work together The networks for both power and ICT are infrastructures that are highly critical to the functioning of society today. Moreover, they have become increasingly interdependent. The aim of European research is to make these two critical infrastructures work together better. The power grid needs to become more intelligent, self-managing, and self-healing. And this must be achieved in decentralised ways, as we have already seen in ICT networks – the internet itself being

Towards Smart Power Networks

a noteworthy example. This philosophy of achieving distributed intelligence in the electric power system is being explored in several European projects.

Distributed intelligence: agents and electronic markets Intelligence in the grid involves designing innovative hardware and software components for the electricity grid, in ways that cross-cut power and ICT systems engineering. Two such successful advanced ICT technologies are software agents and electronic markets. Agents are pieces of software that represent someone or something; they negotiate with other agents for the allocation of resources and communicate this to the controller software of the devices represented. Agents are known from web services, and provide a form of local intelligence. The use of electronic markets is visible in day-ahead markets like NordPool in Scandinavia and Amsterdam Power Exchange (APX) in the Netherlands. The underlying principles can, however, be used in many other settings, especially if combined with multi-agent technology. Electronic markets provide automated means of technical coordination and optimisation in systems with many diverse components. They are a basis for new forms of

Wind Turbine Park I

Residential Heat Production (CHP)

Supply-demand matching reduces regulating power needs One application combines different distributed and renewable energy resources in a commercial cluster. Electricity producers and traders have to forecast their production and consumption, and the forecast of demand and supply must be in balance with the market as a whole. The transmission system operator (TSO) compensates deviations that occur in real-time by contracting regulating power. The costs are put on those parties in the market that deviate from their forecast. Field experiments show (see also www.powermatcher. net) that agent-based electronic markets in a local or regional commercial cluster are able to minimise such deviations. So, they reduce costs for the market parties as well as the need for regulating power. Massive implementation of this concept will make the grid and the electricity markets much more stable.


Power Matcher


Aggregator Data Communications Networks


Wind Park II

distributed control with global intelligence. An electronic market game, called Elektra, has been developed in FP5 to enable people to experience how the concept works. For example, the European project CRISP has led to several innovative applications in this area (Figure 3.1).


Cold Store Local Agent

Local Agent





Emergency Generator

Test Dwelling

Figure 3.1: Project CRISP: electronic market experiment for automatic supply-demand matching.

ICT builds smart electricity networks

18 19

LSVPP Control

Figure 3.2: The Smart Grid Automation Device (SGAD) is the interface between the electrical power system and ICT-systems within a Large-Scale Virtual Power Plant.

Advanced fault detection and handling Agents representing a part of the grid are also useful in fault detection, localisation, isolation and reconfiguration. This has been shown in recent tests with an agent-based Smart Grid Automation Device (SGAD). This device interfaces the electrical power system on the one hand and the ICT-systems on the other hand; it forms part of a future large-scale virtual power plant, or LSVPP (Figure 3.2). In FP5, technical concepts for such a device have been drafted and tested. In a cell of the grid, messages can be exchanged between devices in a few tens of milliseconds. Faults can be isolated correctly in less than 10 seconds, up to one minute, even if data communication rates are as low as 10 kbit/s. Hence, this approach can drastically reduce the interruptions observed today on the distribution system.

Intelligent load shedding In critical situations, whole areas are sometimes shut down to prevent overall grid collapse. Measurements

during the blackout in Sweden in August 2003 showed that technologies and procedures used today sometimes worsen the situation. Automatic tap changers, for instance, focus on maintaining the voltage level of the distribution grid. They ignore the fact that this action worsens the situation for the whole system if a concurrent voltage drop occurs in the transportation grid. EU research has produced an intelligent tap changer that takes into account the voltage level at the transmission level as well. Such a critical prevention action solution is part of a wider strategy of distributed load shedding. Here, the action is not on the circuit breakers of the feeders, but on specific nodes inside them – a solution more flexible and effective in reaching the objective of balancing global production and consumption. Local agents evaluate the local load to shed and submit the required actions to their controlled loads and production units so as to meet the required local power variation. Many more such advanced ICT-based applications for the grid and for managing distributed energy resources will see the light of day in the coming years.

Laboratory activities and pre-standardisation

Towards Smart Power Networks


Laboratory activities and pre-standardisation

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Laboratory activities and pre-standardisation One of the key activities of the European laboratories participating in FP5 projects has been to provide common requirements and quality criteria, as well as proposing test and certification procedures for DERcomponents and systems. However, this is just the beginning. New technological approaches concerning the functions of distributed energy resources have to be tested, the quality of products must be guaranteed and operational requirements should be harmonised.

Completion of DER laboratories in FP5 Projects in FP5 have completed their laboratory infrastructure in order to set up the DER laboratories that are required to cover these tasks. Under the DISPOWER project, two successful test facilities for LV grids have been implemented in CESI’s Milan site and at ISET (Figure 4.1). They have been used to characterise, test and evaluate the reliability of typical distributed generators, the behaviour of the electrical grid, and the feasibility of controlling DG by remote control in a synergic way (Figure 4.2). Also, supervision and dataacquisition systems have been set up to operate in safety mode on grid and generation power units spread across a relatively wide area. They have been designed to use various communication media and technologies, each of them useful in a different context.

Standardisation is a voluntary process based on consensus amongst different economic actors (industry, SMEs, consumers, workers, environmental NGOs, public authorities, etc). It is carried out by independent standards bodies, acting at national, European and international level. The European Standards Organisations are CEN, CENELEC and ETSI, of which CENELEC (European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation) deals with standards in the eletrotechnical field. The European Union has, since the mid-1980s, made an increasing use of standards in support of its policies and legislation in the areas of competitiveness, ICT, public procurement, interoperability, environment, transport, energy, consumer protection, etc. The electricity market might use standards to make sure that competition is fair. The public would benefit from a standard which improves the quality and safety of the power supply or other services and reduces the cost. European standards are also developed to help people comply with European legislation on policies such as the single market. The current change of the electricity supply structure towards more and more decentralised power generation requires a change of current safety, control and communication technology. Today’s main challenges are: the development of standards within acceptable time frames according to the market needs. the availability of expertise within the standardisation process the access to information on the results of standardisation for the standards users

Figure 4.1: ISET’s DER Laboratory DeMoTec in Kassel, Germany that was completed for performing tests within the European Projects Dispower, DG-Facts and Microgrids

the use of standards

Towards Smart Power Networks

Standardisation of DER technology should support safe, reliable and efficient power supplies of sufficient and defined power quality. It should also guarantee the compatibility of applied components and control techniques in order to transform efficiently the conventional electricity grids into future networks with high penetration of DER and renewable energies.

Figure 4.2: 100 kW Microturbine – One example for the huge test environment at CESI in Milan that was completed by several different distributed generators for testing under steady state and transient conditions

Traditionally in Europe, standardisation activities concerning DG were performed mainly according to the energy source, e.g. for wind, photovoltaic, CHP. However, new interdisciplinary committees are being established to bundle general system aspects and harmonise connection issues of DER: IEC TC8: ‘System aspects for electrical energy supply’ IEC 61850: ‘Communication networks and systems in substations’

Coordinated pre-standardisation activities in European DER laboratories

IEEE1547TM: ‘Standard for interconnecting distributed resources with electric power systems’

in brief

It has become clear that European DER laboratories play a key role in the integration of distributed generators, not only for testing concepts but also for the quality management of future DER system components.

Successful tests performed within FP5 projects Within the FP5 projects, the laboratories helped to verify new technological approaches concerning the systems technology required to handle the distribution grid under the new conditions. The control technology of single units, as well as the application of adapted grid control and energy management algorithms, were successfully tested. Furthermore, possibilities to improve power quality by means of inverter-coupled DER units were developed and tested extensively in participating FP5 laboratories (see Figure 4.3). The applicability of the developed controls for reactive power management and harmonic suppression was demonstrated.

Figure 4.3: Within the DG-FACTS project, power quality measurements were performed

The EU’s FP5 IRED cluster encompasses standardisation activities that try to support the above-mentioned committees. Initial activities in the IRED cluster were intended to support harmonisation on the technical level in order to prevent the development of unnecessary differences between Member States.

Laboratory activities and pre-standardisation

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International co-operation The opportunity for close international co-operation between European DER laboratories at an early stage will help to achieve a common understanding of the standardisation requirements for an efficient future power supply’s systems technology. An international exchange with other laboratories was initiated in FP5. As a first step, an information exchange has been started between US laboratories (EPRI-PEAC, NREL, DUA) and Japanese laboratories (METI, AIST, JET).

Establishment of a European DER laboratory Network of Excellence A network of high-quality European DER laboratories has been set up within the FP5 IRED cluster. In FP6, this network has been extended in the framework of a durable European Network of Excellence (NoE) entitled DER-Lab, which brings together a group of 11 organisations for the development of grid requirements and certification procedures for DER components. DER-Lab will act as a platform for the exchange of the current state of knowledge between the different European institutes and other groups. The scattered, but high-quality research and test facilities from the different institutions will be combined to produce significant benefits for the European research infrastructure and

Figure 4.4 : Microgrids test facility at the National Technical University of Athens

the industry. DER-Lab will contribute to the development of new concepts for the control and supervision of electricity supply and distribution and will bundle, at European level, specific aspects concerning the integration of DG and RES technologies. The results of the FP5 IRED cluster, followed by the output of the DER-Lab network will make significant contributions to European standardisation activities and will contribute to the harmonisation of the different national standards.

Pilot installations and ďŹ eld tests

Towards Smart Power Networks

Pilot installations and field tests

24 25

Pilot installations and field tests The “integration” approach: Intelligent Management of Renewable Energies and Distributed Generation in Low Voltage Grids Monitoring results of selected FP5 projects in grid segments showed that the main challenge for keeping power quality stable in urban residential and commercial grids lies in the adequate short circuit current and by avoiding exceeding the voltage band. For example, Photovoltaic (PV) systems connected to a residential grid segment with evening peak loads may exceed the allowed voltage band at a time with high-energy output, e.g. on sunny days at noon, coinciding with low load when nobody uses electrical devices. In such cases, present systems are designed to disconnect automatically, which leads to the non-optimal operation of the Photovoltaic (PV) system. Without communication, small distributed generators are unable to contribute to improving power quality in the grid or to optimising energy flow, e.g. through peak shaving. Most privately owned small generators in Germany are monitored manually by the individual owner. Data transfer to the distribution system operator occurs only once a year for billing or in case of problems. As a result, the distribution system operator is blind to the real-time energy contribution from distributed generators.

The electricity grids that serve European consumers today have evolved over more than a hundred years. They have been built up to perform efficiently and effectively but have now significant new challenges in parallel with major technical breakthroughs. This calls for fresh thinking to take advantage of new technologies and the changing business frameworks. The increasing penetration of RES and other distributed sources in the energy supply in low-voltage grids at national, regional and local level leads to numerous technical challenges, that require a European approach, which includes: supplying European citizens with low-cost, sustainable and reliable electric power; and contributing to limiting carbon dioxide emissions and fossil fuel dependency by accommodating renewable sources. To cope with this, European pilot installations and field tests in FP5 research projects have been carried out to analyse real impacts of “connected” generators towards monitoring power quality, safety and reliability in “integrated” concepts under development: virtual power plants, microgrids and active networks.

within FP5, the Italian research centre CESI has expanded its experimental facility to monitor and control impact of distributed generation on the Italian grid, where about 30 million high-end electronic meters are currently being introduced over the next few years. This will pave the way for close monitoring and control of a very large number of distributed generators in Italy.

A relevant Spanish case study in FP5 projects showed that the main challenge lies in connecting distributed generators in remote areas with weak grids. In these grids, power quality and reliability can be improved by an integrated approach, i.e. by intelligent management of generators. Within DISPOWER, the experimental Technology Demonstration Centre site at San Agustin del Guadalix was set up to monitor and control impacts of distributed generation for power quality improvements. The site serves as a multiplier for Spanish energy experts. Concrete results are currently being evaluated.

Pilot case study of DISPOWER: the virtual power plant settlement in Stutensee, Germany

In Italy, to date there have been no real grid segments with high penetration of renewable energies. However,

In Stutensee (near Mannheim, Germany), around 400 people live in 100 apartments and row houses.

in brief

Towards Smart Power Networks

Within the pilot installations in FP5, the most relevant results on the impact of distributed generators on power quality and safety are the follows: The impact of distributed generators depends on the grid structure as well as on the load profile and generation profile over time. For safety reasons, grid operators must know the exact feed-in points of distributed components during grid maintenance. So far, ICTs are hardly ever applied to small distributed generators. However, they are very important for the efficient operation of many distributed components in low-voltage grids with real-time information on the grid status. The challenge of future projects will be to reduce the cost of monitoring devices and ICTs for an improved infrastructure. During FP5, experimental installation and monitoring with high-end electronic meters has been in progress in a few pilot installations, aiming at the introduction of flexible tariffs and contract management. Citizens’ satisfaction and behaviour will drive the next steps in this field.

Figure 5.1: A view of the CHP System and heat storage at Stutensee, Germany.

Figure 5.2: Partial view of the 30 kWp photovoltaic System installed in Stutensee, Germany. The former energy system for a residential settlement has been converted to a small virtual power plant. The generation units include: a co-generation plant (gas driven Otto motor, 28 kW) with heat storage (Figure 5.1); several Photovoltaic (PV) systems amounting around 30 kWp (Figure 5.2); and a battery system (100 kW/h), acting both as supplier and load. These components are successfully monitored remotely and controlled via the newly developed energy management system. The results are as follows: Power quality: The operation strategy successfully avoids exceeding the voltage band by intelligent load management. In case of high energy yield of the Photovoltaic (PV) system, the battery acts as a load and reduces the voltage level. Thus, the Photovoltaic (PV) system can feed in despite a normally ‘full’ grid, i.e. a high voltage level. Additional connection of distributed components. In a second experiment, the battery acts as a second and third Photovoltaic (PV) system. It feeds in with the same power/double power as the Photovoltaic (PV) system. The result is the validation of grid calculations for the impact of two additional 30 kW Photovoltaic (PV) systems. Finally, the co-generation unit was complemented by heat storage, which gives more flexibility for the operation time according to electricity needs. For this experiment, the co-generation unit generates electricity at high tariff times. In addition, the battery feeds in if there is still demand to be covered. The Photovoltaic (PV) system always operates according to the irradiation and is not actively controlled.

Pilot installations and field tests

26 27

Information and Communication Technology. Before DISPOWER project, the DG components were equipped with local analogue displays for monitoring without remote access. In a first step, the team equipped the Photovoltaic (PV) system, the co-generation unit, the battery, distribution boxes and the transformer with measuring devices for remote realtime monitoring. The second step was to develop and install interface boxes for each component. They enable individual standard DG and RES to communicate with standard bus systems. The third step was the interconnection of all elements by developing and implementing the central control unit for the new power quality and energy management system. The newly established virtual power plant is accessed via the internet on a protected website. Loads in the apartments and rows of houses are accessible by an installation bus. The communication for local load dispatching is currently being activated in selected houses in a follow-up project.

Social acceptability aspects: Experiences with customers in this ‘settlement’ show that owners of small distributed components are willing to co-operate with the distribution system operator both in electricity generation and in consumption, if they see an economic benefit – even a small one – for themselves and understand that they can contribute to improving the environment.

in brief

Safety. Members of the grid operation staff are informed about exact feed-in points and they can monitor the real-time grid status and operate the components via the internet at any time.

DISPOWER results in this pilot installation have shown that, with intelligent management, distributed generation can be integrated into the grid successfully and can improve power quality as well as economic operation of the settlement’s energy supply. The settlement is well prepared for further experiments for the high penetration of renewable energies and distributed generation – both from the socio-economic and technical aspects. The next challenge will be to reduce the cost of the ICT and energy management system in order to make it available for large-scale use.

Economic Aspects: The energy management forecasts the demand and expected generation and, thus, optimises energy flow based on criteria such as minimising the use of high-tariff electricity and shaving peak loads. In addition, remote monitoring of the current grid status has already led to cost savings and optimised operation and maintenance of distributed generators. Failures of the components are repaired more efficiently and faster than before, resulting in cost savings and reduced down times compared to the situation before DISPOWER. As for the co-generation unit, the newly introduced operation schedule reduces maintenance cost due to fewer starts and stops. Private owners of Photovoltaic (PV) systems monitor their own systems and are in close contact with the distribution system operator. Failures are detected and repaired in adequate time.

Figure 5.3: In this settlement, 22 families participated in the experiment “washing with the sun”. They received a message via mobile phone or e-mail that they should use their washing machine within a specified period of time – when the team expected high energy yield from the Photovoltaic (PV) systems. As a result, the families reacted very well. In a next step, this reaction will be supported by intelligent control devices.

Socio-economic issues

Towards Smart Power Networks


Socio-economic issues

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Socio-economic issues Socio-economic research projects within FP5 were directed at a further increase of the DER share in an economic efficient manner in the medium and long term. Thus, they address topics like optimising the role of support schemes and improving network regulation and the changing roles and business of relevant market players, such as DER and network operators, in the electricity market.

Socio-economic DER research in FP5 projects The main consideration of the SUSTELNET project was that the economic values DER and RES generated for the electricity system are insufficiently recognised and incorrectly valued and allocated towards different market players. Although support schemes are often applied in EU Member States to overcome this barrier, in the long run this will result in economically inefficient solutions and will keep DER and RES from becoming mature power generation sources. This situation is illustrated in Figure 6.1. The production of DER power has a certain cost price usually well above the market price. As DER brings a number of (energy and environmental) benefits to society, DER is supported through a (guaranteed) price that is above cost price level. The blue bar shows the cost and the red bar a regulated feed-in tariff. In an alternative (market-based) support system, the support for DER is additional (green) to the commodity price (orange). This additional support should only be given for: (i) compensation for external effects, (ii) support for the introduction of new technologies, and (iii) achieving specific policy objectives such as sustainability goals. Electricity network regulation should ensure that DER and RES are compensated for electricity system benefits (the yellow bar), lowering the level of external support required. Such electricity system benefits consist of, for example, distribution capacity cost deferral, the provision of ancillary services or reduction of line losses.

The effective integration of Distributed Energy Resources (DER) into electricity supply is only secured if an optimal combination of technical, legal and economic requirements is fulfilled. The technical prerequisites of the optimal integration of DER rely on the availability of network capacity, load balancing conditions and the mix of the controllable and uncontrollable DER share. Legal conditions are vital as they include network regulation aimed at DER operators and distribution system operators (DSO). This includes the unbundling of distribution and trade of electricity, the adoption of incentive mechanisms for DSOs, and the regulation of third party access and network connection charges. Last but not least, fulfilment of correct financial, commercial and economic requirements to DSOs and DER operators need to be in place, including DER access to the power market, the type & level of network connection charges, and other anticipated costs & benefits for the network and DER operators. Most of the barriers for further increase of the DER share are caused by regulatory regimes that hardly recognise the positive values of DER to power or grid services and improvement of the security of supply. It is therefore essential that future energy policies acknowledge and value the qualities of DER for the electricity system and for society as a whole. Consequently important is to reconcile two key policy objectives of the EU, namely sustainability (by increasing shares of DER and RES) and improving power market competitiveness (by using market mechanisms as policy instruments). So increasing the share of DER in the electricity supply should also support the economic efficiency of the system as much as possible, including all environmental and network related externalities. For that purpose it is necessary that future power systems should be designed towards a level playing field for all market actors, meaning equal opportunities for both centralised and distributed generation. Therefore, both the energy and environmental values of DER should be better acknowledged and valued in future power markets.

Towards Smart Power Networks

Compensation for electricity system benefits

Support (e.g. green certificates) • environmental benefits • sustainability goals • technology support

Electricity system benefits increase due to network innovates Lower support only for remaining externalities Higher commodity price because of internalisation of CO2-emission costs through emission trading system

Commodity price


Regulated feed-in tariff

Marked based pricing



Market based pricing

Future (2010-2020)

Figure 6.1: DER integration economics

In the medium- to long-term future (2010-2020), the costs for DER will decrease as the result of technical developments. Support is only justified to compensate for external effects. In the new regulatory framework it will be possible to improve the mechanisms to compensate for DER electricity system benefits. The compensations from the electricity system will, in relative and absolute terms, become more important for the economics of DER. The SUSTELNET project developed a regulatory roadmap that leads to the adoption of appropriate mechanisms for increasing the integration of DER in Europe in an economically optimal way. Therefore, criteria for a regulatory framework for future electricity systems were identified for individual Member States for the medium to long term, including: Guidelines for allocation of benefits and costs of DER Connection charges and use-of-system charges for DER operators Incentivisation mechanisms for DSOs, motivating them to connect DER to the grid and taking DER into account in future network planning. Based on these criteria, regulatory roadmaps for nine countries1 were developed. These included sets of 1

measures to be taken in different regulatory periods up to the year 2020. The work on the national regulatory roadmaps eventually led to a set of recommendations for a common European regulatory policy on distributed generation. In addition, the SUSTELNET project brought a large number of stakeholders together, such as electricity regulators, policy-makers, DSOs and supply companies, as well as representatives from other relevant institutions to debate the criteria for an optimal regulatory framework. Results of the DISPOWER project have contributed to redefining the role of the different energy system stakeholders in a changed future electricity market environment with a growing share of DER. To cope with these integration problems and, at the same time, use the benefits of DER to the maximum, several alternative network concepts, such as the Active Networks and Micro-grids concept have been analysed. Such concepts require special network technologies and, within DISPOWER, the socio-economic impact of these technical options in current liberalised electricity markets was studied. An inventory of technologies improving the access of DER was made with an assessment tool (illustrated in Figure 6.2), showing the roles and interactions between the stakeholders and energy markets, in order to qualitatively answer the question: which party will invest in such a technology, especially

The nine countries involved in SUSTELNET are: Denmark, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia.

Socio-economic issues

30 31

Energy supplier

DER operator


Commodity Physical



Ancillary services market


Large power producer

Figure 6.2: DISPOWER assessment tool

when part of the benefits will accrue to a third party? Investments in technologies such as power storage (shown in Figure 6.2) have the potential to improve the integration of DER into power networks and optimise power output, producing only when the demand is highest, and to decrease balancing costs as the technology makes DER more controllable. Benefits of these technologies do not only accrue to the actors investing, so the mechanisms for the allocation of costs and benefits have to be identified. Follow-up research projects within the FP6 will quantify these benefits and costs and identify the regulatory constraints that limit a ‘flexible’ allocation of costs and benefits between network actors. Today, the increasing share of distributed generation may negatively affect the business of DSOs, because DER units are generally located closer to demand than centralised generation. Decreasing revenues for DSOs, as less transport is needed, and other costs push DSOs to change their business focus towards other revenue sources. As the activities of the DSO have a monopoly character, new regulation can affect the business of the DSO and motivate it to facilitate DER in its network system. However, unlike DSOs, suppliers act in a market that is exposed to competition and is not restricted by regulation. A new business concept needs to be designed to exploit opportunities for and promote the penetration

Finally, the FP5 project ENIRDG-net completed the assessment and overview of progress in EU Member States as regards policy and regulation for DER integration. Through a benchmark study, a systematic comparison has been made of different DER support schemes and distribution network regulation in all EU Member States. The benchmark study showed that in many EU Member States the actual regulatory framework and policy support systems did not match the level of DER penetration needed to meet the longterm targets. Policies towards DER are still mainly aimed at removing short-term barriers, increasing the production share of RES, thereby ignoring the longterm economic benefits and efficiency goals for the power system.

in brief

Balancing Market

of DER, for example by operating a large number of small electricity generators in the same way as a large power plant, a concept often referred to as a large scale virtual power plant, to be developed in the FP6 project FENIX.

FP5 projects have demonstrated that: A growing share of DER in the electricity supply system will require the establishment of a level playing field, creating equal opportunities for both centralised and decentralised power generation. Reaching this level playing field requires the following steps: Promote DER on market-based principles, combining sustainability with economic efficiency. Examples are the use of price premiums (on top of market prices) or green certificates. Ensure network and electricity market access for all types of generation, including the access of DER to ancillary services and balancing markets, ensuring valuation of DER costs and benefits. Include innovative approaches in network management and regulation to motivate DSOs to facilitate a larger share of DER into electricity networks.

Further RTD activities towards the Smart Power Networks

Towards Smart Power Networks

Further RTD activities towards the Smart Power Networks

32 33

The detailed research topics for the EU’s FP7 will be presented in future work programmes, to be published after the formal adoption by the Council and the European Parliament of the Framework Programme and correlated legislation. These detailed research topics will be defined on the basis of several inputs, including: a) political priorities in the energy area, b) results and lessons learned by previous and current EU projects, and c) other stakeholders’ inputs, including the Strategic Research Agenda produced by the recently launched Technology Platform on Future Electricity Networks (see box). Nevertheless, some preliminary indications have already emerged, and it can be expected that future research topics will be based on the categories described hereafter: Intelligent electricity networks. RTD should cover the development of new concepts, system architectures and a regulatory framework for control, supervision and operation of electricity networks, so as to transform the grid into an interactive (customers/operators) service network, while maximising reliability, power quality, efficiency and security. These systems should be based on applications of distributed intelligent, plug and play, e-trading, power-line communications, etc. Efficient distributed energy generation technologies. RTD programmes should reinforce and balance efforts made towards the development of Distributed Generation technologies, including fuel cells, micro-turbines, photovoltaic systems, reciprocating engines, hybrid power systems, thermally activated technologies, etc. Demand-side management and demand-response resource techniques. These systems allow customers to shift their power consumption towards off-peak periods and to reduce their total or peak demand. RTD should cover the development of customer-side energy management systems capable of managing local power consumption and re-dispatching local

in brief

Further RTD activities towards the Smart Power Networks Within the Energy Theme, the Commission proposal for the Seventh Framework Programme (COM(2005) 119 final) confirms power networks and distributed generation as a priority for future research activities requiring a European approach. The research area, referred to as ‘Smart Energy Networks’ in the Commission proposal, is the natural evolution of past activities on ‘Integration’. The objective of the Smart Energy Networks area is “to increase the efficiency, safety and reliability of the European electricity and gas system and networks, e.g. by transforming the current electricity grids into an interactive (customers/operators) service network, and to remove the technical obstacles to the largescale deployment and effective integration of distributed and renewable energy sources.”

loads, so as to take full advantage of the real-time energy price and network status information. New energy services. RTD is needed for the development of new energy services, such as remote metering, remote control of appliances, the real-time monitoring of homes to enable better care for the elderly and other vulnerable groups, building stock performance rating, and so on. Improving the efficiency of power transmission and distribution. To minimise these losses (around 7% in OECD countries), RTD is needed in areas like HVDC, advanced high-temperature cables, high-efficiency transformers, etc. Enabling technologies. To build the new type of grid structure it is essential to bring to the market low-cost technologies which can bridge between local networks and create a modern pan-European network with the capability of integrating significant DER. Key enabling technologies will facilitate

Towards Smart Power Networks

this development. RTD should focus on solutions/ applications of key enabling technologies, such as High Temperature Superconducting Systems and Devices, Power Electronics Converters, Power Line Communication Technologies, etc. Stationary energy storage. Energy storage has a very important strategic value in future electricity networks. It can allow the reduction of spinning reserves to meet peak power demands, by storing electricity, heat and cold, which is produced at times of low demand and low generation, and releasing it when energy is most needed and expensive. RTD should focus on energy-storage technologies including advance solutions on battery, flywheels, superconducting magnetic energy storage, compressed air energy storage, and super capacitors.

Technology Platform SmartGrid: Electricity Networks of the Future The potential for technology platforms to address major economic, technological or societal challenges and to stimulate more effective and efficient RTD, especially in the private sector, is highlighted in the Commission Communication “Investing in Research: an Action Plan for Europe”, set up in response to the 2002 Barcelona Council’s call to boost research and technological development in Europe. In collaboration with industrial stakeholders and the research community, the Commission has facilitated the setting up of a Technology Platform for the Electricity Networks of the Future. The first Advisory Council of the Platform was nominated in May 2005 and a Member States Mirror Group in November 2005. The first deliverable from the Platform is the publication of a Vision Paper by December 2005 and of a Strategic Research Agenda in spring 2006. Further information on this Technology Platform can be found at:

Further RTD activities towards the Smart Power Networks

34 35

List of FP5 projects

Towards Smart Power Networks

List of FP5 Projects

36 37

Integration of Renewable Energy Sources and Distributed Generation into the European electricity grid


MORE CARE – More advanced control advice for secure operation of isolated power systems with increased renewable energy penetration and storage


PreHyNet – Preparation of a European Network for renewable energy hybrid power systems


DISPOWER – Distributed Generation with high penetration of renewable energy sources


SUSTELNET – Policy and Regulatory Roadmaps for the Integration of Distributed Generation and the Development of Sustainable Electricity Networks


ENIRDG net – European Network for Integration of Renewable Sources and Distributed Generation


MICROGRIDS – Large scale integration of micro-generation to low voltage grids


DGFACTS – Improvement of the Quality of Supply in Distributed Generation Networks through the Integrated Application of Power Electronic Techniques


CRISP – Distributed intelligence in critical infrastructures for sustainable power


OMASES – Open Market Access and SEcurity assessment System


EuroMVCable – Investigation of European Specification for Medium Voltage Power Cable


ALTERNATIVE SF6 – Development of a SF6 alternative for electrical equipment


HVDC – Benefits of Hvdc Links in the European Power Electrical System and Improved Hvdc Technology

STORAGE ENK6-CT-1999-00013

PAMLiB – New Materials for Li-Ion Batteries with Reduced Cost and Improved Safety


ACTUS – Specific Accelerated Test Procedure for Photovoltaic (PV) Batteries with Easy Transfer to Various Kinds of Systems and for Quality Control


UHP VRLA BATTERY – Ultra High Power Valve Regulated Lead Acid (vrla) Batteries for Ups Applications


NEGELiA – New Generation of Li-ion Accumulators


ABLE – Advanced Battery for Low Cost Renewable Energy

Towards Smart Power Networks


PROBATT – Advanced Processes and Technologies for Cost Effective Manufacturing of Highly Efficient Batteries for Fuel Saving Cars


STAR-BMS – Evaluation of Standard Test Procedures for Battery Management Components


MULTIBAT – Development of Multi-battery Management System for Renewable Energies


INVESTIRE NETWORK – Investigation on Storage Technologies for Intermittent Renewable Energies: Evaluation and recommended R&D strategy


BENCHMARKING – Development of Test Procedures for Benchmarking Components in RES, in Particular Energy Storage Systems


LION HEART – Lithium ION Battery Hybrid Electrical Application Research and Technology


LIBERAL – Lithium Battery Evaluation and Research - Accelerated Life test direction


AA-CAES – Advanced adiabatic compressed air energy storage


CAMELiA – CAlendar life MastEring of Li-ION Accumulator


REVCELL – Autonomous Energy Supply System with Reversible Fuel Cell as Long-term Storage for Photovoltaic (PV) Stand-alone Systems and Uninterruptible Power Supplies


ACROPOLIS – Low AC loss elementary and assembled BSCCO superconductors for application in devices of energy technique


HOTSMES – Superconducting Magnetic Energy Storage based on High Transition Temperature Superconducting Materials for high quality power


HIPOLITY – Innovative new high temperature superconducting magnetic energy storage system (SMES) for high efficient power quality


ASTRA – Applied Superconductivity Training and Research Advanced Centre


ASSPECT – Centre of Excellence for the Application of Superconducting and Plasma Technologies in Power Engineering


PELINCEC – Centre of Excellence in Power Electronics and Intelligent Control for Energy Conservation


BIODISH – Development of a ceramic hybrid receiver for biogas-fired Dish-StirlingSystems for electric power supply


EXPERT SYSTEM LSSH – Development of an expert system to analyse and optimise the technical and economic feasibility and performance of hybrid large-scale solar heating (LSSH) systems


HYBRIX – Plug and Play technology for hybrid power supplies


FIRMWIND – Towards high penetration and firm power from wind energy


Photovoltaic (PV)FC-SYS – Photovoltaic fuel-cell hybrid system for electricity and heat production for remote sites


FIRST – Fuel cell innovative remote energy system for Telecom

38 39 ERK5-CT-1999-00022

MINI-GRID-KIT – Mini-grid construction kit for rural electrification with renewable energies


AMIREES – Accompanying Measure for the Integration of Renewable Energies into the Energy Systems


DH DSM – Demand-side management of the district heating systems


MED2010 – Large-scale integration of Photovoltaic (PV) and wind power in Mediterranean countries


HELIOSAT-3 – Energy-Specific Solar Radiation Data from Meteosat Second Generation (MSG)


AFRODITE – Advanced Façade and Roof Elements Key to Large-Scale Building Integration of Photovoltaic Energy


REMAC 2000 – Renewable Energy Market Accelerator 2000


PAMELA – Phase Change Material Slurries and their Commercial Applications


REGENERATE – Theoretical and Experimental study for the development of efficient and economic Stirling regenerators


RES2H2 – Cluster Pilot Project for the Integration of RES into European Energy sectors using H2.


DGFACTS – Improvement of the Quality of Supply in Distributed Generation Networks through the Integrated Application of Power Electronic Techniques


ERA_ISLA – New and renewable energies, electricity and water in outermost regions

European Commission EUR 21970 — Towards Smart Power Networks – Lessons learned from European research FP5 projects Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities 2005 – 39 pp. – 21.0 x 29.7 cm ISBN 92-79-00554-5

SALES AND SUBSCRIPTIONS Publications for sale produced by the Office for Official Publications of the European Communities are available from our sales agents throughout the world. How do I set about obtaining a publication? Once you have obtained the list of sales agents, contact the sales agent of your choice and place your order. How do I obtain the list of sales agents? • Go to the Publications Office website • Or apply for a paper copy by fax (352) 2929 42758

have been built up to perform efficiently and effectively. But now they face new challenges in parallel with major technological breakthroughs. This calls for fresh thinking to take advantage of new technologies and changing business frameworks. The increasing penetration of renewable energy and other distributed sources in the energy supply plays a key role in addressing important needs, such as: supplying the citizens with low-cost, sustainable and reliable electric power; and contributing to limiting carbon dioxide emissions and fossil fuel dependency by accommodating renewable distributed sources. This brochure describes the lessons learned in around 50 research projects under the Target Action Integration of renewable energies and distributed generation into European electricity networks, in the EU’s Fifth Framework Programme. These projects are considered as the starting point for the development of the first generation of components and new architectures for interactive electricity grids: the “smart power grids”. This intelligent grid system will contribute to the deployment of new and cleaner technologies. It would also allow the electricity consumers to choose their electricity supply according to their needs and preferences. Activities in this area are continuing under FP6 with very promising large Integrated Projects and Networks of Excellence in which more and more utilities and other stakeholders in the electricity sector, usually competitors in the international market, are showing their readiness to share know-how and efforts. In the coming years, research efforts should be intensified and coordinated in the EU to achieve validated technologies which hopefully will provide innovative win-win solutions that were unimaginable just a few years ago.


The electricity grids that serve European consumers today have evolved over more than a hundred years. They

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