Utility Demonstration of Dynamic Phase Balancing

Session: Rapid-Fire Introductions by Poster PresentersDate: Wednesday, October 16, 2019 / 11:35AM - 12:05PM PDTTags: Poster / Performance, Reliability and Technological Advancements

Through the ratepayer-funded Electric Program Investment Charge program, Southern California Edison is demonstrating the use of the latest advances in power electronics and energy storage devices and controls to provide dynamic phase balancing by means of a dynamic power conditioner (DPC). The ongoing project aims to mitigate the cause of high neutral currents and provide several power quality benefits by using actively controlled real and reactive power injection and absorption.

Electric utilities constantly seek to minimize the neutral current flow in a distribution system by balancing all three phases of the distribution system. Unfortunately, traditional methods for phase balancing are neither perfect nor always feasible. The issue of phase balancing becomes more complex as more and more distributed energy resources such as solar photovoltaic inverters are deployed on residential rooftops, leading to load/generation profiles more difficult to predict. Furthermore, load characteristics such as increased harmonics due to electronically controlled customer side loads also inject harmonics into the system further causing undesired current flow on the neutral conductor.

The DPC uses a new power conversion hardware architecture coupled with energy storage, to enable dynamic phase balancing. This presentation will provide insights into the feasibility of using a DPC to supplement traditional methods of load balancing in distribution circuits and the potential of the new architecture to lower the energy and footprint requirements. The audience should gain better and practical understanding of how energy storage can be leveraged to support distribution system reliability and explore additional value streams beyond distribution deferral or operational cost reduction.