Lommel DinBox RTU Deadband

Lommel DinBox RTU Deadband
The Infrax study analyses voltage fluctuation problems caused by renewable 'green' energy, produced decentralised and locally but feeding a centralized grid...

Infrax studies Smart Grid with DinBox RTU Deadband



Infrax Belgium studies possibilities of 'Smart Grids' with the help of Bausch DinBox RTU deadband...

"The Infrax study analyses voltage fluctuation problems caused by renewable 'green' energy, produced decentralised and locally but feeding a centralized grid..."




  • Micro-RTU in DINrail housing w. integrated power supply (input voltage range of 85~264 Vac / 120-370 Vdc), RTC and FRAM's
  • Tailor made application firmware (for example “Deadband” on demand of Infrax)
  • Embedded TCP/IP enabled GSM and GPRS modem
  • Integrated I/O: 4 AI, 16 DI, 2 DO
  • Power back-up via integrated Supercaps (short time) or NiMH battery pack (long time)
  • Internal Data acquisition, handling and logging (time and event driven)
  • (Real time) alarm management through SMS with acknowledgement
  • Integrated ASCII protocol NMKD-3085 (ABB Scada over GPRS)
  • 60870-5-104 TCP/IP communication protocol: integrated in DinBox RTU/2 (in development) 



Infrax, a Belgian electricity distribution company



In 2006 Interelectra, WVEM and Iveg, three important Belgium inter-municipal utility providers of electricity, gas, cable networks and telecoms decided to unify under the name of Infrax. Since that moment 108 Belgian municipalities in Limburg and West Flanders have delegated the responsibility for gas, cable (television), electricity supply and wastewater management to Infrax. Infrax represents about 20% of all the municipalities in Belgium. When it comes to electricity Infrax maintains the electricity distribution network and delivers electricity to the consumers in those 108 municipalities on demand of the electricity suppliers.



The Belgian high-voltage grid maintained by Elia consists of overhead lines and underground cables with voltages ranging from 380 kV to 30 kV. The 380 kV cables form the backbone of the Belgian and European network. International supplies are carried over these cables. Nuclear power stations and the Coo hydroelectric power station are also connected at this voltage level. The 220 and 150 kV connections in turn carry electricity to large consumption centers and ensure Belgium's domestic electricity supply. Finally, power is carried over 70 and 36 kV lines to the take-off points used by the distribution companies like Infrax. Heavy industrial consumers are directly connected to the high-voltage grid.
Electricity travels the path of least resistance, which means it flows to the closest and easiest destination possible.The electricity grid has no storage capacity. It is designed only to transport and consume energy from the producer of energy to the consumer. It is a centralized network. 



Infrax studies how 'Green energy' causes voltage fluctuations in a centralised grid


But what happens with the grid when decentralized and locally produced energy sources like for example photovoltaic (PV) solar panels, wind turbines feed a centralized grid? Renewable energy sources feeding the grid cause voltage fluctuations because a centralized grid is designed only to transport and consume energy and not to transport energy in the opposite direction. The amount of energy consumed by the grid must equal that which is being provided to it at any and every moment in time. Renewable energy sources produce energy at inconsistent rates, depending upon variables such as sunlight and wind velocity, certainly in countries like Belgium with extremely variable weather conditions…Therefor Infrax has started a study in June 2009 with the help of Europe to analyze the influence of decentralized production of solar energy on a centralized electricity grid. The study takes places in Lommel (Belgian Limburg) were lots of photovoltaic solar panels are already installed and many others will be installed in the near future.

The Infrax study in Lommel is extremely relevant to the decentralized and continuouisly growing production of PV solar systems that are hooked up to the grid. When those PV systems produce more energy than they consume this energy is not stored for a rainy day when the sun doesn't shine. Moreover, when there is a lot of sun and therefore a lot of ‘green energy’ production, consumption is rather low. In a growing market of ‘green energy production an electricity distribution company like Infrax is immediately confronted with the problem of synchronizing offer and demand of energy. For Infrax a ‘smart grid’ which ‘adapts’ itself automatically to a decentralized and every day growing production of energy would be more than welcome.




Infrax wants to create a 'Smart Grid' with the help of Bausch DinBox RTU db (Deadband)

Paul De Fauw, General Director of Infrax puts it like this : “First of all we want to understand the actual flow of energy in our network. In a second phase we will gradually hook up more and more PV solar panels to the grid...Therefore we need to control the current supply from a distance, we need to install batteries and apply many other techniques to see how we can add extra capacity to the grid...”  
And this is precisely when Bausch Datacom comes in the picture:
Danny Vandewaerde (Infrax): “In the Lommel 10 kV distribution network we want to guard and monitor each 10/0.4kV transformer substation. To do so the 10/0.4kV distribution transformer is guarded by measuring voltages, active power, reactive power and currents. Also negative power (P,Q) must be measured because the renewable energy produced by PV solar panels is transported decentralized, in the opposite direction. For this purpose we use a Bausch DinBox RTU db (Deadband*) and a Power Monitoring Device.
The Power Monitoring Device is measuring the 4 important parameters of the distribution network (U,I,P,Q) and sends out 4 analogue signals which are captured by the DinBox RTU db. The deadband range is adjustable and can be activated or not for each of the 4 analogue input channels of the RTU. Also the time between 2 ‘deadband measurements’ is adjustable. When one of the measured values exceeds the adjustable deadband compared with a previously measured and sent out value, the DinBox RTU deadband will communicate the new value to the SCADA-DMS system of Infrax over the GSM/GPRS network.
In general the measured values will be used as input information for online load flow calculation of our distribution networks.
A second goal of this project is to connect all short circuit indicators to the DinBox RTU. In case of a short circuit in the grid, all necessary data will be available to minimise the loss of power for our customers.
I can say that our work will make of Infrax the first electricity distribution company in Belgium that will study ‘Smart Grid’ technology on such a large scale!

*Deadband : A deadband is an area of a signal range where no action occurs. The system is dead. Deadband is used in voltage regulators and other controllers. The purpose is common, to prevent oscilllation or repeated activation-deactivation cycles.



If you are interested in this solution or the (RTU) products of Bausch Datacom please send a mail to sales@bausch.be or give us a call at (0032)16461288.




Sources article:


Infrax begint grootschalig onderzoek naar de mogelijkheden van 'smart grids'
*Infrax start studie naar mogelijkheden van 'Smart grids' met Europees geld (http://www.standaard.be/artikel/detail.aspx?artikelid=4i2b3vlg)      

*Decentrale energievoorziening onder lokaal beheer (http://www.samenlevingentechnologie.be/ists/nl/pdf/rapporten/eindrapport_decentrale_energie___2de_def.pdf)



date_range Published on 17-12-2009 00:00
person Dominiek Truyers
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