Dynamic Security Constrained Unit Commitment/Economic Dispatch

Currently a Researcher at the Centre of Power and Energy Systems at INESC TEC, Rui Sousa’s research activities are mainly focused on power system dynamics with the integration of renewable energy sources in isolated power systems. Smart4RES is the first, but certainly not the last, EU-funded project, he is involved in.

The increasing large-scale integration of converter-interfaced renewable energy systems (CI-RES) and the consequent reduction in the share of synchronous generation units in the daily system operation entail additional challenges regarding power systems dynamic security.

Operating scenarios with very large CI-RES penetration lowers the volume of synchronous units in operation, thus reducing the availability of power-frequency regulation capacity and synchronous inertia. This trend poses a major challenge in isolated power systems due to their inherent low inertia nature, hence prone to more severe frequency transients when compared to interconnected systems.
To prevent large frequency excursions and to ensure dynamic secure operation in insular power systems, system operators typically impose constrains to the instantaneous penetration of CI-RES resulting in power curtailment.

Rui contribution in Smart4RES focuses in tackling the aforementioned issues with the development of a new approach to the Unit Commitment/Economic Dispatch (UC/ED) that includes dynamic security restrictions. The UC/ED approach includes the assessment of the UC/ED results dynamic behaviour in face of critical contigency events, and in case of unsafe operation activates additional power system resources to guarantee the operation of the system in a dynamic safe zone.

Dynamic Security Constrained UC/ED – Credit: Rui Sousa

In line with the overarching goal of Smart4RES, the UC/ED approach being deveoped intends to include the modelling of forecasts (load and RES generation) uncertainty. 

More about Rui Sousa

On his background
Rui obtained a Master’s degree in Electrical and Computers Engineering in Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto (2020) with a major in Energy and a Specialization in Renewable Energy.
His master thesis was developed in PAVNEXT, a Portuguese Start-up that develops a Pavement Energy Harvesting (PEH) technology that allows the extraction of kinetic energy from vehicles and converts it into electric energy. Rui’s master thesis focused on the modelling and simulation of the electric generation behaviour of the PEH technology and its energy storage system.

As INESC TEC Researcher, besides contributing to EU-funded projects, Rui is also involved in technical consultancy activities within his domain.

On his research interests
Rui Research interests are power system dynamics, large-scale integration of RES, Electric Vehicles V2G technology integration, Renewable Energy Communities.

On choosing Smart4RES and INESC TEC for his research
“INESC TEC works closely with Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto, thus the relevance of the work conducted by INESC TEC is well known among students. During my specialization in Renewable Energy, most of the teaching staff was somehow related to INESC TEC spurring my interest in R&D activities. After my brief experience working directly in the industry, it was clear to me that I wanted to pursue a career as a researcher and the INESC TEC work references naturally drove to my application. As a researcher in INESC TEC I find the opportunity to be involved in projects with great relevance in the much-need transformation of Power Systems while surrounded by high-qualified human resources that drive my professional growth.
It was not me choosing Smart4RES, Smart4RES chose me. Task 5.2 overreaching goal seems suitable for my background in Power System Dynamics. I enthusiastically accepted the challenge of joining Smar4RES hoping to add my contribution to such a pertinent project. Smart4RES is the first European project in which I participate and presents me with an opportunity of not only strengthen my expertise in Power System Dynamics as well as broaden my range of knowledge in forecasting and decision-aid solutions for power systems under high renewable penetration. “

Where he sees himself in 5 years
“It is really hard for me to make such predictions. I must confess I am still in a very early stage of my professional career. My priority for the next 5 years is to expose myself to several projects of a similar span as Smart4RES to mature my expertise and/or to find new subjects of interest to define my career path.”

On Mentors with an impact
“Without forgetting all the people who have been supporting me since I joined INESC TEC, I must highlight professor Carlos Moreira and professor Manuel Matos. Both of them were my professors during my Master’s and were responsible for driving my interest in the Energy sector and later in Renewable Energy. Professor Carlos Moreira and Professor Manuel Matos are currently working with me on Smar4RES. They carry their teaching skills to their professional activities and continue to be sources of great apprenticeship to me now as a researcher. “