Highly resolved optimal renewable allocation planning in power systems under consideration of dynamic grid topology

August 28, 2018

Computers & Operations Research, Vol. 96, August 2018, pp. 281-293

The system integration of an increasing amount of electricity generation from decentralised renewable energy sources (RES-E) is a major challenge for the transition of the European power system. The feed-in profiles and the potential of RES-E vary along the geographical and temporal dimension and are also subject to technological choices and changes. To support power system planning in the context of RES-E expansion and allocation planning required for meeting RES-E targets, analyses are needed assessing where and which RES-E capacities are likely to be expanded. This requires models that are able to consider the power grid capacity and topology including their changes over time. We therefore developed a model that meets these requirements and considers the assignment of RES-E potentials to grid nodes as variable. This is a major advancement in comparison to existing approaches based on a fixed and pre-defined assignment of RES-E potentials to a node. While our model is generic and includes data for all of Europe, we demonstrate the model in the context of a case study in the Republic of Ireland. We find wind onshore to be the dominating RES-E technology from a cost-efficient perspective. Since spatial wind onshore potentials are highest in the West and North of the country, this leads to a high capacity concentration in these areas. Should policy makers wish to diversify the RES-E portfolio, we find that a diversification mainly based on bioenergy and wind offshore is achievable at a moderate cost increase. Including solar photovoltaics into the portfolio, particularly rooftop installations, however, leads to a significant cost increase but also to a more scattered capacity installation over the country.