Four uses for IEC61850 at the edge of the smart grid

May 29, 2019 //By Nick Flaherty
Profiles of IEC61850 used at the grid edge
New applications of the IEC61850 standard at the grid edge are becoming an increasingly important focus for innovation teams and R&D departments across Europe.

IEC61850 is being used in a number of ways for the monitoring, control and protection of systems at the edge of the power grid.

Vehicle-to-Grid Services

Protocols that link vehicles and chargers, in particular OCPP, are well-established, but IEC61850 extends these links to other power systems, enabling a wider range of vehicle-to-grid services. IEC61850-90-8 outlines modelling of e-mobility standards for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, enabling efficient interoperation with other power systems. The charging schedules of electric vehicles can then be regulated to meet the demands of the wider system, balancing out fluctuations in demand and improving the quality of supply.

Hybrid Wind & Storage

On particularly windy days, surplus energy is often generated by wind assets, especially in areas with a high penetration of wind power. Linking wind assets to storage technology provides a way of capturing this excess power, preventing the need to disconnect the assets and waste the energy. IEC 61400-25 provides an extension for IEC61850 for wind power, enabling complex control of wind power in conjunction with storage. This creates a virtual power plant that can provide services to grid such as primary reserve and reactive power, as well as being able to operate in islanded mode and store excess wind power.

A collaboration between Vattenfall, Nordex and the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences combines a 1 MW battery with a 13 MW wind farm to investigate the operation and integration of hybrid systems and assess ways of improving turbine life.

Combined Heat and Power

Combined heat and power systems provide an attractive way of reducing carbon emissions, producing heat as a by-product of electricity generation. While simply installing a CHP system in a large building can produce efficiency savings, providing grid services through intelligent control with IEC 61850 will have further benefits for both the system owner and the wider grid.

More IEC61850 uses:

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