Application of Narrow Band Power Line Communication in Volt/Var Optimization

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Smart grid is an advanced and sophisticated electrical network that uses a combination of information and communication technology to gather required data from different nodes on the network through a reliable, robust and cost effective communication solution, and acts on them to improve the efficiency and reliability of production and distribution of electricity. Volt/Var optimization (VVO) is one of the most important smart grid applications that gives this capability to utility companies to have an efficient electricity distribution network by maintaining an acceptable voltage level along the distribution section under different loading situations. This project focused on characterizing and evaluating the performance of narrow band power line communication (NB-PLC) as a prevalent communication technology for smart grid applications such as VVO in North American power grid. This work was done by establishing and setting up a real test bed in the lab. In this work we tried to implement S-parameter measurements due to its simplicity for channel characterization at high frequency ranges, when we have cascades of different components over the channel. It should be mentioned that the main focus of our work was on analyzing the behavior of an energized 5KVA MV/LV transformer over our channel. Then, we have shown the relationship between S-parameters and ABCD parameters to derive the channel transfer function based on ABCD matrix. Additionally, we did some simple noise measurements over our channel when it was non-energized and energized.
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