Congestion management via increasing integration of electric and thermal energy infrastructures

Alvaro Gonzalez-Castellanos, Priyanko Guha Thakurta, Aldo Bischi

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Congestion caused in the electrical network due to renewable generation can be effectively managed by integrating electric and thermal infrastructures, the latter being represented by large scale District Heating (DH) networks, often fed by large combined heat and power (CHP) plants. The CHP plants could further improve the profit margin of district heating multi-utilities by selling electricity in the power market by adjusting the ratio between generated heat and power. The latter is possible only for certain CHP plants, which allow decoupling the two commodities generation, namely the ones provided by two independent variables (degrees-of-freedom) or by integrating them with thermal energy storage and Power-to-Heat (P2H) units. CHP units can, therefore, help in the congestion management of the electricity network. A detailed mixed-integer linear programming (MILP) optimization model is introduced for solving the network-constrained unit commitment of integrated electric and thermal infrastructures. The developed model contains a detailed characterization of the useful effects of CHP units, i.e., heat and power, as a function of one and two independent variables. A lossless DC flow approximation models the electricity transmission network. The district heating model includes the use of gas boilers, electric boilers, and thermal energy storage. The conducted studies on IEEE 24 bus system highlight the importance of a comprehensive analysis of multi-energy systems to harness the flexibility derived from the joint operation of electric and heat sectors and managing congestion in the electrical network.

Original languageEnglish
Article number05005
JournalE3S Web of Conferences
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2021
Event2020 Applied Energy Symposium (ICAE), 100RES 2020 - Pisa, Italy
Duration: 29 Oct 202030 Oct 2020


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