Energy storage sizing for improved power supply availability during extreme events of a microgrid with renewable energy sources



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A new Markov chain based energy storage model to evaluate the power supply availability of microgrids with renewable energy generation for critical loads is proposed. Since critical loads require above-average availability to ensure reliable operation during extreme events, e.g., natural disasters, using renewable energy generation has been considered to diversify sources. However, the low availability and high variability of renewable energy sources bring a challenge in achieving the required availability for critical loads. Hence, adding energy storage systems to renewable energy generation becomes vital for ensuring the generation of enough power during natural disasters. Although adding energy storage systems would instantaneously increase power supply availability, there is another critical aspect that should be carefully considered; energy storage sizing to meet certain availability must be taken into account in order to avoid oversizing or undersizing capacity, which are two undesirable conditions leading to inadequate availability or increased system cost, respectively. This dissertation proposes to develop a power supply availability framework for renewable energy generation in a given location and to suggest the optimal size of energy storage for the required availability to power critical loads. In particular, a new Markov chain based energy storage model is presented in order to model energy states in energy storage system, which provides an understanding of the nature of charge and discharge rates for energy storage that affect the system's power output. Practical applications of the model are exemplified using electrical vehicles with photovoltaic roofs. Moreover, the minimal cut sets method is used to analyze the effects of microgrid architectures on availability characteristics of the microgrid power supply in the presence of renewable energy sources and energy storage. In addition, design considerations for energy storage power electronics interfaces and a comparison of various energy storage methods are also presented.