Hardware Implementation of Microgrid Test Bed

Open Access
Lobo, Joyer Benedict
Graduate Program:
Electrical Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
March 20, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Peter Idowu, Thesis Advisor
  • Seth Wolpert, Thesis Advisor
  • Dr Scott Von Tonningen, Thesis Advisor
  • Mr Arnold Offner, Thesis Advisor
  • microgrid
  • IEEE 1547
  • DER
  • test bed
The ever increasing concerns of environmental pollution due to burning of fuels in power plants, have ushered in the utilization of distributed renewable energy resources which include solar, wind and other renewable sources of energy. In order to address this issue, the concept of Microgrid is introduced as a strategy to integrate renewable energy resource from various locations with the existing power system. Microgrids could be characterized as a group of interconnected loads and distributed energy resources (DER) with clearly defined electrical boundaries that acts as a single controllable entity with respect to the grid and can connect and disconnect from the grid to enable it to operate in both grid connected or island mode. The coordinated operation and control of DER sources together with storage devices, such as batteries, and controllable loads are central to the concept of microgrids. From the grid’s point of view, a microgrid can be regarded as a controlled entity within the power system that can be operated as a single aggregated load and from a customer’s point of view, microgrids are similar to traditional LV distribution networks that provide their electricity needs, but in addition, enhance local reliability, reduce emissions, improve power quality by supporting voltage and reducing voltage dips, and potentially lower costs of energy supply. This research focuses on the hardware implementation of a laboratory scale microgrid test bed. The microgrid test bed is based on the specifications of IEEE 1547, which is a standard for incorporating distributed resources with the electric power system. Important features include voltage and frequency control when it operates in an island mode and when in a grid connected mode . This microgrid is a plug and play test bed, that includes features like photovoltaic system (emulator), distributed control, industrial grade controllers, numerical relays, smart meters, bi-directional converters, battery storage system, various static and dynamic loads and visualization softwares. The objective of this project is to provide a test bed on which several emerging technologies in a microgrid environment could be tested and implemented. This test bed would provide a platform for carrying out research in studying the effects of integrating distributed generation in a microgrid, studying the different behavior of the microgrid at instances when it is connected to the utility and also when it is operating independently.