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Abstract

The use of a soft-open point (SOP) to interlink two LV networks in order to increase the PV hosting capacity has been investigated in a study preparing a pilot demonstration project within Romande Energie's (DSO in western Switzerland) grid. The contribution describes the selection of the location, the control mode and the size of the demonstrator based on the achievable improvement of the network performance in terms of voltage variations, cable / transformer loading and network losses. The size of the SOP has also been compared to the achievable distributed generation hosting capacity increase. The interface and protection of the SOP into the network is implemented using both local protection criteria and transfer tripping over a radio link. Simulations confirm that the chosen location and control mode for the SOP permit to achieve a more balanced utilisation of the available network capacity. Overall, more PV can be added to the network with no adverse effect on voltage quality or on the system's fault behaviour. On this basis, a demonstration SOP has been developed and tested in a laboratory environment. The final step has been to deploy the device into the distribution grid.

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