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The integration and evaluation of an intelligent PV setup in a smart house environment
Sridharan, Vignesh
Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya. Departament d'Enginyeria Electrònica; Silvestre Bergés, Santiago
With the implementation of self-consumption electricity tariff in Germany and the increasing prospects of it being implemented in many other countries, the number of PV installations on individual rooftops has increased. With the increase in such individual power plants on dwellings, there arises a need for robust energy measurement principles, which require more sophisticated metering infrastructure involving smart meters with bidirectional communication protocols. In order to make the best use of the existing grid infrastructure and to implement peak power shaving, there is an increasing effort to implement Demand Response functions in houses with intelligent household appliances like time flexible washing machines and water heaters etc. These inclusions have driven the conventional homes into the Smart category. One such smart house consisting of Solar PV panels, Bidirectional grid feed converter assembly, Lead acid batteries (storage), intelligent home appliances and smart meters integrated with a demand response management software was built at VITO (The Flemish Institute for technological research), Mol, Belgium, to carry out research on concepts like smart grids, energy storage and Multi agent system based demand response management. The current project’s goal is to integrate and evaluate the intelligent PV system with smart loads in the LabVIEW environment and analyse how the individual components of the smart house behave during a cluster test. The intelligent PV system, which is being evaluated, consists of a PV simulator block, 3 individual converters in an assembly, Lead Acid Batteries, a heater as a non-deferrable load and connections to the AC grid. Few logics to measure and evaluate the energy consumption are also pondered upon. The LabVIEW VIs were developed for heater control. The thyristor and USB voltage based calibration was made for controlling the heater. The intermediate transformer losses were measured and look up tables made in the LabVIEW platform for the power loss compensation. A net zero energy consumption logic for the smart house was put to test, which could be potentially useful, when there are multiple sources of power generation and storage. The cluster tests resulted in giving a better understanding of the system. Some deviations were noticed from the programmed states of operation of the Flexiva bidirectional converter assembly. The switching ON of the deferrable load based on the availability of power was studied from the experiments conducted under different levels of SOC of the batteries. An interface to use a kWh pulse meter to measure the power consumption was also developed in LabVIEW. The smart house setup can be made to couple with (μ) CHP plants, heat pumps and intelligent storage options with better communication interfaces in future to improve the functionality and reliability of the smart house.
Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya

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