Model predictive control for resilient operation of hybrid microgrids

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This dissertation develops advanced controls for distributed energy systems and evaluates performance on technical and economic benefits. Microgrids and thermal systems are of primary focus with applications shown for residential, commercial, and military applications that have differing equipment, rate structures,

This dissertation develops advanced controls for distributed energy systems and evaluates performance on technical and economic benefits. Microgrids and thermal systems are of primary focus with applications shown for residential, commercial, and military applications that have differing equipment, rate structures, and objectives. Controls development for residential energy heating and cooling systems implement adaptive precooling strategies and thermal energy storage, with comparisons made of each approach separately and then together with precooling and thermal energy storage. Case studies show on-peak demand and annual energy related expenses can be reduced by up to 75.6% and 23.5%, respectively, for a Building America B10 Benchmark home in Phoenix Arizona, Los Angeles California, and Kona Hawaii. Microgrids for commercial applications follow after with increased complexity. Three control methods are developed and compared including a baseline logic-based control, model predictive control, and model predictive control with ancillary service control algorithms. Case studies show that a microgrid consisting of 326 kW solar PV, 634 kW/ 634 kWh battery, and a 350 kW diesel generator can reduce on-peak demand and annual energy related expenses by 82.2% and 44.1%, respectively. Findings also show that employing a model predictive control algorithm with ancillary services can reduce operating expenses by 23.5% when compared to a logic-based algorithm. Microgrid evaluation continues with an investigation of off-grid operation and resilience for military applications. A statistical model is developed to evaluate the survivability (i.e. probability to meet critical load during an islanding event) to serve critical load out to 7 days of grid outage. Case studies compare the resilience of a generator-only microgrid consisting of 5,250 kW in generators and hybrid microgrid consisting of 2,250 kW generators, 3,450 kW / 13,800 kWh storage, and 16,479 kW solar photovoltaics. Findings show that the hybrid microgrid improves survivability by 10.0% and decreases fuel consumption by 47.8% over a 168-hour islanding event when compared to a generator-only microgrid under nominal conditions. Findings in this dissertation can increase the adoption of reliable, low cost, and low carbon distributed energy systems by improving the operational capabilities and economic benefits to a variety of customers and utilities.