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Distributed Automated Demand Response

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

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Technology Marketing SummaryMany states are increasing standards requirements for contributions from renewable power generation assets such as solar photovoltaic and wind. Intermittent generation from these devices will require corresponding changes in other storage or generation assets or responsive demand. In addition, the solid state inverters used for these new sources of power generation will decrease characteristic response times, which will present system stability challenges. The new technology developed by LLNL would help address both of these issues by providing demand response at the sub-second timescale.DescriptionThe new LLNL technology would sense active control or other signals from the grid and automatically shed or re-establish load as appropriate. This gradual reduction and reestablishment of load would give operators more time to reconfigure grid resources to respond to the transient. This increased time window for reaction should lead to lower operating costs with the current grid architecture and reduced need combustion turbines to manage the grid. LLNL envisions the development of a simulation model of the devices in a grid environment to establish the value proposition and to optimize the design while prototype devices are manufactured. Subsequently, based on selections, criteria and observations of key issues from the simulations, the devices would be tested in a physical testbed.Benefits

Sub-second response to control signals → Improved global utility grid stability and improved economics due to peak demand shifting.

Distributed response at the distribution line scale → Improved local stability and improved economics due to reduction in line losses at transformer.

Applications and IndustriesThe devices would respond to control signals or indictors of system distress much faster than current demand response systems. The devices can be embedded in appliances, be sold by the utilities as adaptors for appliances or other loads. Utilities could offer the adaptors under incentive programs in a manner similar to the programs in place for compact fluorescent light bulbs. Appliance manufactures could install them and label the appliance in a manner similar to the Energy Star program in California.More InformationThis technology has not been reduced to practice. However, simpler components that comprise this technology are currently available on the market today.Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Patent 8,548,636
Engineered setpoints for autonomous distributed sensors and actuators
Loads on an electric power system are configured with under-frequency relays in which the frequency setpoints and delay times for reclosure are uniformly distributed. If demand exceeds supply in the system, frequency will decrease. The decrease in frequency will actuate relays and reduce load to the point where demand will meet the available supply. After its engineered delay time, each relay will attempt to close contact and reestablish the load.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory 10/01/2013
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated

Contact LLNL About This Technology

To: Annemarie Meike<>