The Azimuth Project
Electrical grid (changes)

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Contents

Idea

The design of electrical grids becomes more important with greater use of renewables which generate electricity unevenly. Some ways of improving a grid are to:

  • make it bigger, so that the unevenness tends to be smoothed out.

  • connect storage facilities to generating facilities.

  • use smarter load management.

Examples

North sea grid

Ten European nations signed a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ on an offshore North Sea electric grid in december 2010. An undersea HVDC grid in the North sea would connect offshore wind farms from a wide area to the mainland, and would also connect pumped hydro in Norway to other countries. More details in this BBC story and this Nature article.

Load shedding

In order to handle peaks in demand for electrical power that exceed available capacity there is little option but to cut off power from a section of users. This is known as load shedding.

Smart grid

The ‘smart grid’ could help us deal with increased fluctuations in the electric grid due to increased usage of wind and solar power:

References

For related issues here, see:

category: energy

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