Advances in wide area monitoring and control to address emerging requirements related to inertia, stability and power transfer in the Gb power system

D. H. Wilson, S. Clark, S. Norris, J. Yu, P. Mohapatra, C. Grant, P. Ashton, P. Wall, V. Terzija

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes recent innovations in wide area monitoring and control in the GB power system to address challenges as the penetration of renewable energy and power electronic conversion increases. The shift away from large synchronous generation sources with inertia towards power sources such as wind and solar energy, and HVDC interconnectors, which do not contribute to the system inertia, changes the dynamic characteristics of the grid as well as the pattern of network loading. With limited opportunities to establish new onshore transmission routes, technologies such as series compensation and parallel AC and DC paths are being used to extend the power transfer capability of the network, however these also introduce certain new risks to be managed. Given these risks, it is important for the GB transmission owners and system operator to have greater clarity of the dynamic behaviour and physical capability of the system, and through this create novel active control methods where appropriate for network use and efficient provision of ancillary services. There is therefore a need for more detailed monitoring of the power system performance to identify and interpret changing risks. In response to these needs, the GB transmission system owners and system operator are collaborating to apply a suite of new system monitoring applications based on synchronised wide area monitoring, using established phasor measurements as well as the first deployment of a new monitoring approach for higher frequency phenomena. The applications address a wide range of dynamic phenomena from very low frequency governor/frequency control oscillation (0.002-0.1Hz), through electromechanical oscillations (0.1-4Hz) to higher frequency sub-synchronous oscillations (4-46Hz), with methods of identifying sources of oscillations. Disturbances are captured and characterised using real-time and post-event measures. A new approach to wide area control is demonstrated, addressing the need for fast frequency control with reduced inertia in the grid. This approach accelerates response and prioritises action close to the source of the disturbance in order to improve stability rather than degrade it, controlling various non-conventional resources to deliver a fast, proportionate and predictable response.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventCIGRE Session 46 - Paris, France
Duration: 21 Aug 201626 Aug 2016


ConferenceCIGRE Session 46


  • Disturbances
  • electromechanical oscillations
  • frequency response
  • inertia
  • sub-synchronous oscillations
  • synchrophasors
  • WAMS


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