As the power system evolves and the energy transition takes place, a corresponding evolution is happening in the way we model and test power system behaviour and equipment to enable a reliable and resilient grid. Real-time power system simulation - and the closed-loop testing process that it enables - is becoming increasingly involved in the success of electric utilities, protection and control equipment manufacturers, research institutions, universities, and consultants.
Closed-loop testing, also known as hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) testing, allows power system professionals to de-risk the integration of novel systems, anticipate and mitigate negative interactions, and optimize device performance by connecting real devices to a simulated network. HIL testing provides a depth of analysis and systems-level testing approach that are highly beneficial, and sometimes critical, in the modern power system. Inverter-based renewable energy resources, communication protocol-based protection and control, and other grid modernization technologies can create vulnerabilities that conventional modelling and testing processes are often blind to. Hardware-in-the-loop testing allows engineers to anticipate these issues, preventing misoperation and negative interactions which may result in outages or damaged equipment.
The RTDS® Simulator from RTDS Technologies is the industry standard for real-time power system simulation. Hardware-in-the-loop testing with the RTDS Simulator has been applied by power system innovators worldwide to enable a secure global energy transition. The RTDS Simulator was used to test controls for the world's longest High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) link as well as the world's first HVDC link based on Modular Multilevel Converter (MMC) technology. In 2018, the technology was used to perform testing on the first-ever travelling wave-based relays installed with trip outputs live to the breakers to protect a high voltage line. These are just a few landmark projects - the RTDS Simulator is used for testing microgrid control systems, distribution automation equipment including intelligent switchgear, IEC 61850 substation automation, synchrophasor-based protection system testing, power electronics control testing, inverter characterization, cybersecurity, and much more.
The RTDS Simulator will be featured in an Innovation Stages session at the IEEE PES T&D Conference and Exposition taking place in New Orleans later this month. "Real-Time Simulation: A Game-Changer for De-Risking Grid Modernization Technologies" will provide background on the fundamentals and benefits of real-time electromagnetic transient simulation, an overview of the equipment required for hardware-in-the-loop testing, and real-world examples of successful projects. Case studies from utilities in the U.S. and worldwide will be presented, including the testing of microgrid controls, DERMS systems, traveling-wave relays, HVDC schemes, and large-scale renewable energy integration. Don't miss this exciting session on Tuesday, April 26 at 11:15 am on Innovation Stage 2.
You can also visit RTDS Technologies at Booth 5928 at any time during the conference for a live real-time simulation demo with our NovaCor hardware and state-of-the-art RSCAD FX software. Our simulation specialists will be available throughout the conference to answer your questions about the RTDS Simulator and its applications in renewable energy integration, microgrid control testing, distribution automation testing including intelligent switchgear, IEC 61850 substation automation, synchrophasor-based protection system testing, power electronics control testing, inverter characterization, cybersecurity, and much more.
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