Power Quality Park: A futuristic solution for better Power Quality (PQ)

Published On: Nov 27, 2017


Have you ever tried to find out why there is always problem of tube light flickering? Why sometimes bulb do not seem bright enough? We’ll tell you what’s the problem! All these problems are related to poor Power Quality (PQ).

Power Quality is one of the major concerns in present era. With the introduction of Smart Grid, there is expected growth in both lower voltage levels (distributed generation) and in new types of consumption (for example, charging stations for electric vehicles, expanded high-speed railways, etc.). These variations in consumptions, interference between devices and power line communication, weakening of transmission grid will have adverse effects on Power Quality. Hence, continuous evaluation of electric supply system for PQ disturbances and variations has become important.

To tackle these problems a suggested solution could be a “Power Quality Park”. This park would provide power of specialised quality needed by certain industrial and commercial customers to run their facilities efficiently and effectively. This blog draws attention towards this futuristic solution of Power Quality Park for maintaining PQ in the network.

WHY DO WE NEED A PQ PARK?

Even today, in India’s poorer homes, school going children and elderly parents crouch under dim candle light. The middle-class society is buying FMCGs like the refrigerators, washing machine, ACs for their better living. But due to in adequate power supply, service providers recommend voltage stabilisers and uninterrupted power supply systems for the safety of the costly appliances, an added expense.

The hardship of consumers will increase with the growing usage of Internet. Due to increased use of technology, shutdown and voltage fluctuations will affect consumers today more, than it did before. With employees, especially software professionals, increasingly preferring flexible working hours, steady and uninterrupted power must be provided at all times. With growing e-commerce and e-governance, there is growing need about the awareness of power quality. It would not be a surprise that years from now, electricity will be the blood pumping through the veins of our future society. To achieve this growth in a fast and cost-effective way, the 21st century’s major energy challenge of maintaining power quality will be key. Hence, power quality will become a necessity, even if it involves extra cost.

“Power Quality Park will be one of the futuristic solution for better PQ”

Further, number of industries co-exist in a single area. We can often find a manufacturing factory adjacent to a micro-processor unit. If a welding machine in manufacturing factory draws extra power, there will be a sudden voltage fluctuation in the micro-processor unit. This sudden drawl of power, forces the micro-processor unit to either shut down or shift to a locality with lower voltage fluctuations. Whenever there are such frequent voltage drops, industries are invariably forced to stop operations leading, thereby, to loss of production. Evidently, the increasingly complex requirements for quality power supply cannot always be managed with conventional equipment. Hence, a solution to address all these issues will be required.

Power Quality (PQ) Park can be that solution which provides better PQ and thereby enhancing reliability of the network.

HOW POWER QUALITY PARK WORKS?

Power Quality Park will be industrial or commercial park providing power of specialised quality needed by certain industrial and commercial customers to run their facilities efficiently and effectively. It will employ experts to assist the users in solving their power quality problems on a regular basis.

Power Quality park can be built and operated so as to provide different grades of power to same or different customers at different tariffs. The different grades are achieved by incorporating different devices in the park like static transfer switch (STS), diesel generator (DG), shunt active filter and series active filter. The STS with the help of coordinated control can detect the voltage of the preferred or alternate feeder and switches to the higher voltage feeder. The power will be qualified by means of the shunt active filter and series active filter which eliminates harmonics, sags or swells. In case of failure of both the feeders, the power to the critical loads will be provided by the diesel generator. For the time interval, where the DG has to start up and synchronised, the power to the most critical category will be provided by the series active filter.

Each customer can have different grades of power depending of their load requirements. For example, an industry or a shopping mall has critical or noncritical loads. Industries may have very critical loads such as process control, robotic tools, etc. which even cannot suffer a small variation in the power quality level. PQ park will address this issue.

“Power Quality Park will deliver high quality power than a normal utility feeder and also provide well-conditioned different quality of power by utilizing shunt and series filters”

Thus, a PQ park will be designed in a way that it ensures coordination of electrical devices to prevent industrial and commercial power users from contaminating each other’s power. In case of a power failure in one source, the other sources will be lined up automatically, by providing a ring main system. PQ park will provide redundant and special feeders into the sub-station design itself so that the outage in one feeder shall automatically activate the redundant feeder. Suitable filter-circuits will also be designed and put in place to check and minimise harmonics.

The concept of Power Quality Park was proposed in new industrial area in the North of Poland. This area was dedicated to factories and businesses that require extremely high quality of power. Northern part of Poland suffered from scarcity of new technology industry, hence local authorities perceived Power Quality Park as a chance to attract innovative and technologically advanced enterprises and strongly support this initiative.

Power Quality Park will provide below benefits to customers and utility

India too, can think of setting up such Power Quality Parks and have a healthy operating network with enhanced PQ levels. This will require support from utilities as they have been the guardians of the distribution network. Nevertheless, it can be a collaborative effort from the different energy stakeholders to work towards supplying quality of supply to its customers.

CONCLUSION

With the growing technology, each local part of the power system will have its own particular requirements and will develop its own flavor of smartness as required. The various PQ issues arising with the smart non-linear loads will have to be dealt with a holistic solution. Power quality park, a bunch of customized power devices will be a futuristic solution to all the PQ issues. This park will be able to deliver high quality power than a normal utility feeder and also provide well-conditioned different quality of power by utilizing shunt and series filters. Hence, as we are increasing the number of IT park, it’s worthwhile to think of Power Quality Park. Therefore, it is time that power managers in India consider developing Power quality park for a better future network.

REFERENCES

  1. “Time for power quality parks” by D. John Suriamouli’
  2. “Making Premium Power a Reality” by Michele Peel, Published on Aug 7, 2001.
  3. “Power quality improvement with an extended custom power park” by M.Emin Meral, Ahmet Teke
  4. http://www.icar.com/en/le-3-cause-principali-di-un-basso-power-quality/
  5. “Consequences of poor power quality- an overview” by Sharmistha Bhattacharyya and Sjef Cobben
  6. “Improving power quality to meet future energy demands” by Cavin Pietzsch & Patrick Plas, published on Aug 24, 2016
  7. “Premium power park A review of the concept, definations and applications” by Masoud Farhoodnea
  8. ‘An overview of power quality issues in smart grid’ by E. Prathibha and A.Manjunath, VTU University, International Journal of Innovative Research in Advanced Engineering (IJIRAE) ISSN: 2349-2163 Volume 1 Issue 10 (November 2014)
  9. Design and development of mini custom power park by Manitha, Jishnu Shankar, Anjana, Visal Raveendran and Manjula Nair, Conference on Power and Energy System, 2013
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