Distributed Energy Resources (DER) and Bulk Power System Reliability

Presented by: Charlie Vartanian, Sr. Technical Advisor, Energy Storage, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and Rich Bauer, NERC, Assoc. Dir., Reliability Risk Management, North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC)

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The webinar co-presenters recently contributed to an article for a special DER issue of the IEEE Power & Energy magazine, https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/8495051. This article addressed Distributed Energy Resources (DER) and Bulk Power System (BPS) reliability considerations from several perspectives, including, inverter technology, impact of DER on BPS performance, wholesale markets development, and technical standards development. This earlier article reflects much of the power industry’s focus to-date regarding DER in context of the BPS. So far, this focus has mostly been on identifying and mitigating DER impacts on upstream BPS’s, as DER penetration level increases.

This new webinar will focus on relatively newer industry activities that are now including consideration of DER’s grid supportive capabilities. For this webinar, Rich will cover the main points in NERC’s recently released Guide for Inverter Based Resource Performance. This relatively new guide was the product of a multi-stakeholder team that first evaluated the Blue Cut and Canyon Fire Events which triggered large scale (100’s MW) inadvertent loss of inverter connected resources. Then, based on that learning, developed technical guidance for inverter connected resources to better support BPS operation. Charlie will look further over the horizon at planned technical guide development for DER Energy Storage resources. Charlie will outline some of the grid supportive capabilities of modern inverter-connected energy storage, e.g. inertial equivalent power modulation, and short term high fault current contribution. These technical points will be discussed in context of the plan to draft technical guidelines (IEEE P1547.9) that should allow for prudent implementation of these specific resource capabilities. The noted inverter-based storage resource capabilities have significant implications for BPS performance support, and are also relevant to achieving policy goals including RPS attainment.

INTENDED AUDIENCE: Utility distribution engineers, Utility transmission planners and operators, Renewable Resource and ES Project Developers, Developer’s Owner’s Engineers, Developer’s EPC firms, and Regulatory staff



Charlie Vartanian, PNNL Charlie Vartanian is a Sr. Technical Advisor – Storage Reliability and Integration, within PNNL’s Electrochemical Materials and Systems Group. His focus is the advancement of reliability and integration of grid connected energy storage systems. Charlie has over 25 years of power industry experience deploying advanced grid technologies, performing electric system studies, and contributing to technical standards development. He has worked previously for Mitsubishi Electric, UET, DNV KEMA, A123 Systems, Enron, the California Energy Commission, and Southern California Edison (SCE). During his 15 years at SCE, Charlie’s activities spanned traditional T&D planning through R&D. He is a currently Secretary of the IEEE 1547.9 Guide for DER Energy Storage Interconnection working group.

Rich Bauer, NERC

Rich Bauer is the Associate Director of Reliability Risk Management – Event Analysis for the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), where he promotes understanding and learning from events and occurrences that are experienced on the Bulk Electric System. The Reliability Risk Management group performs forensic analysis of major system disturbances as well as cause analysis of events through the NERC Event Analysis Process.

Rich’s career in the electric utility industry spans more than 35 years, and includes experience in System Protection and Communications, Hydro Production, Substation Apparatus, Transmission Operations and Transmission Planning.



For any questions, please contact Phyllis Caputo at p.caputo@ieee.org.

To view previous webinars on-demand, visit the IEEE Smart Grid Resource Center