Energy Assurance with Renewable GenerationSince the beginning of this century we have witnessed an acceleration in the adoption of renewable energy resources and technologies. Various forces – social, political, economic, regulatory and technological – have conspired to create a climate that fosters the development and proliferation of numerous technologies that enable the conversion, control and integration of renewable energy resources. Although the mix of renewable resources is diverse, ranging from wind and solar to tidal and biomass, the bulk of today’s investments are going into wind and solar, both of which are considered variable resources because they are available not upon demand, but upon the whims of nature. This creates several challenges and opportunities in exploiting their benefits, both when operating them in isolation and when operating them in coordination with other resources. Numerous solutions have been proposed for mitigating the challenges, ranging from storage and transmission expansion to demand response and “smart grid” control technologies. This talk will discuss the most significant factors affecting energy assurance in the presence renewable generation. It will investigate the use of energy storage to mitigate some of the challenges. It will discuss reliability metrics and targets, and a method for quantifying the notion of “firming” up an intermittent resource. Effects of resource availability and network constraints will be considered. The presentation will conclude with a discussion of another characteristic of renewable resources – low inertia – and how it impacts system reliability, and of ongoing research toward developing solutions for mitigating these impacts.
Grid Reliability: Evaluation, Applications and Emerging Issues
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