Distribution Generation - Impact on Distribution Systems

p8-8-toc.jpgdg.jpgRecent technical developments such as microturbines and residential fuel cells, plus the changing regulatory climate, make it likely that distributed generation will become increasingly present in distribution systems in the near future. Distributed generation includes a range of technologies that make it feasible for use by residential and small commercial utility customers in generating some or all of their own power. These customers may also generate more power than they need and sell the excess power back to the utility or to some non-utility entity such as a load aggregator.

In addition to the commercial and economic implications to the existing electric utility industry, there are substantial technical issues to integration of these distributed resources into the interconnected power system. It is essential that utility engineers and managers become familiar with the technical issues associated with distributed resource integration. The purpose of this report is to provide an informative summary of these issues, as well as providing background on the driving forces behind the distributed resource vision and a critical evaluation of ongoing distributed resource interconnection standards.

Systems issues discussed in the report with respect to DG include:

  • Voltage regulation
  • Fault current contribution
  • Inadvertent islanding
  • Grounding and distribution system overvoltages
  • Power quality
  • Network interconnections

The DSTAR issued white paper is a comprehensive 56-page report that describes the various distributed generation technologies and summarizes their impact on distribution system design, operation, and protection. The outline of the final report is shown on the left.

This study was conducted in: P8-8