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The Future of DER Hosting Capacity and Operating Envelopes: Calculating Residential Voltages Without Electrical Models

Distribution companies, who manage the poles and wires, struggle to have accurate and up-to-date electrical models of their residential areas, known as low voltage (LV) networks. Without electrical models, it is hard to assess the hosting capacity for distributed energy resources (DER) such as solar PV or electric vehicles; particularly when voltages are likely to be a major issue.  

Similarly, the calculation of operating envelopes requires quantifying the voltage effects from different exports or imports. Taking advantage of historical smart meter data, this webinar will demonstrate that is possible to capture the physics of three-phase LV networks and create an electrical model-free approach to calculate voltages and, hence, DER Hosting Capacity and Operating Envelopes. 

Using Neural Networks, the nonlinear relationships among the historical data (demand and voltages) and the corresponding LV networks can be captured. This approach can make it possible for distribution companies to bypass the time-consuming process of producing LV network models and, instead, carry out accurate, extremely fast voltage calculations for any type of what-if scenarios involving residential solar PV, batteries, electric vehicles, etc. 

Researchers from the University of Melbourne, Prof Nando Ochoa, Mr Vincenzo Bassi and Dr Dillon Jaglal, Prof Tansu Alpcan, and Prof Chris Leckie, presented their initial findings using real smart meter data from the Victorian distribution companies AusNet Services, Powercor, and Jemena. This was the first webinar in a series as part of C4NET’s project “Model-Free Operating Envelopes at NMI Level” which began in July 2021. 

Categories: Webinar

Event Information

Event Partners


University of Melbourne

AusNet Services



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