Electric Power System

Electricity is a powerful thing. In order to use its benefits, its important to provide a power system planning to avoid any upcoming issues.
Power system planning is a process in which the aim is to decide on new aswell as upgrading existing system elements, to adequately satisfy the loads for a foreseen future.

Development of Power Systems Through Ages

The beginning of the electrical power systems we know today all started in 1881 when a couple of electricians in England decided that they would use the power of water to generate a current of power that could be used to light lamps.

The next year in 1882, electrical power systems began with the creation of the Edison Electric Light Company that was developed by Thomas Edison. They were producing a direct current at one single voltage at this time. the direct current could not be turned into the higher voltages.

 In 1884: Lucien Gaulard and John Dixon Gibbs designed a transformer that created the real beginning to the electrical power systems we are familiar with today. The transformer was used to light up the lamps for a distance of twenty-five miles but the more distance that the lamp was from the generator source, the dimmer the light it emitted was.

By 1886: the company Westinghouse had established the system located in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. The success of Westinghouse could largely be because they had someone that figured out that by connecting the transformers in a certain way the lamp on the end of the line could receive the same amount of voltage as the first one did.

By 1890 these networks were starting to be everywhere providing people with the ease of electric lighting.

Basic Components of Power System

The most basic power system components are:

  • Generators – convert mechanical energy into electrical energy, allow for power to be generated
  • Transformers – transfer Power or energy from one circuit to another circuit without change in frequency
  • Transmission Lines – transfer power from one place to another.
  • Busses – distribute power  among a number of transmission lines and power transformers
  • Loads – allow power to be used by consumers.The power system components are being switched or connected in a variety of different configurations using circuit breakers and associated switches.

Major Issues in Electric Power System Planning

Power system planning faces nowadays enormous challenges and various problems as, for example, future load growth in the face of uncertainties associated with future load forecasting, the constraints imposed on investment, the type and availability of fuel for the generating units, the need for consolidating dispersed electric utilities in the isolated regions as a prerequisite for future interconnecting these regions via local national grids and with neighboring countries.

Also, how a suitable reliability level can be achieved that can guarantee a continuous power flow with a reasonable and acceptable cost. All these obstacles made power systems planners and concerned agencies face tremendous difficulties in planning electric power facilities. it is necessary that the amount of electricity in the grid corresponds with actual consumption needs.

Due to the ever-increasing demand and growth in popularity of such advances as electric vehicles, Power grids across the globe are subjected to constant change and expansion. Demand and generation capacity is continually growing, and new load and generation technologies are introduced.

Major Issues in Electric Power System Planning

This represents a major challenge in delivering a secure, reliable electricity supply. Also if we relyed on renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power as the main sources is considered a big challenge in power system planning for some reasons such as:

  1. Renewable energy sources are natural forces that are strongly dependent on the weather conditions. Therefore, when you have bad weather conditions, renewable energy technologies such as solar cells will be of less use.
  2. Each type of energy requires a specific technology so that we can convert it into electricity. The efficiency of energy conversion devices is very important when prioritizing energy sources. Unfortunately, the efficiency of renewable technologies is not that high compared with traditional energy conversion devices. 
  3. Generating electricity from renewable energy sources produces way lower levels of pollution. However, renewable devices are subject to some concerns because manufacturing them and their disposal process might emit pollution.
  4. To harness nature’s energies, we need a lot of space. This will cause many problems for renewable energy sites. Compared with traditional power stations, we must use more land to establish renewable energy farms.
  5. Considering the energy we can get from renewable technologies, their initial cost is high and sometimes unaffordable. Renewable energy devices’ manufacturing and installation processes, like PV panels, are relatively expensive. Also heat pump costs can be quite high for some households. Governments are setting aside considerable budgets, such as solar panel grants and heat pump grants, to help these technologies grow.

Algorithms and Heuristic in Optimizing Electric Power Systems

for us Optimizing the power system is challenging to address because power systems are enormous and complicated and can be impacted by several unanticipated occurrences. It is possible to lessen the consequences of the uncertainty of predicting power demand, and optimize the integration of renewable energy sources by algorithms and modeling techniques to analyze historical data and try to predict future demands. These techniques may be generally classified as mathematical and heuristic.

Mathematical Algorithms:  the specialest are a set of precise and unambiguous instructions that can be followed to solve a specific problem.

Heuristic Algorithms:   they are a strategy that can guide for a solution or an answer.

Both algorithms and heuristics are ways of solving problems, but they have different advantages and disadvantages. Algorithms are more reliable and accurate, but they can also be more complex and time-consuming. Heuristics are more flexible and efficient, but they can also be more error-prone and biased. Sometimes, you can combine algorithms and heuristics to create hybrid solutions that balance the trade-offs.

For example: you can use a heuristic to narrow down the search space. then apply an algorithm to find the best solution within that space.