Sustainable Energy-efficient Microgrid – A Case Study on Local Energy System Design

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School of Electrical Engineering | Doctoral thesis (article-based) | Defence date: 2018-09-26
Degree programme
66 + app. 70
Aalto University publication series DOCTORAL DISSERTATIONS, 173/2018
Increasing environmental concerns about the use of fossil fuels have gen-erated great interest in emerging technologies to produce clean energy. Current research aims to mitigate this concern by proposing solutions for applying clean energies in residential buildings. This thesis focuses on mi-crogrids, small energy grids to generate, consume and share energy among producers within their own networks. Microgrids can come in dif-ferent sizes and be based on various electricity generation sources. This research modelled and designed a microgrid solution that is sustainable, energy-efficient, economically viable and easily implemented. To achieve these goals, the design of a community of residential buildings is reverse-engineered in order to scale down the microgrid model into smaller seg-ments for simplifying the management of energy in individual and groups of dwellings. This research presents a sequence of approaches to optimally utilise dis-tributed energy resources, such as PV systems, battery energy storage, thermal storage and electric vehicles, with the aim of minimising imports from utility electricity grids, as well as helping houses, buildings, and communities to reduce energy bills. The optimisation algorithms are also tested in a hardware-in-the-loop environment to validate their perfor-mance. Furthermore, the research includes economic assessments to pro-vide a complete picture of the real value of such an approach, incorporating the cost of the new assets (e.g. batteries) and the effects of different pric-ing strategies. The research starts with the design of a DC microgrid for single-family homes, leading to the development of a community model consisting of eight dwellings in a neighbourhood. The model is implement-ed for daily, monthly and yearly time spans to verify that the proposed ap-proach works across different time scales.  The results of this thesis, which are extended from a small dwelling model to a community model, from one-day energy management analysis to a year-long energy sharing assessment, would benefit researchers, grid utilities, power companies and city planners in order to provide better solu-tions for a future carbon-free environment.
Supervising professor
Kyyrä, Jorma, Prof., Aalto University, Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Finland
Thesis advisor
Lehtonen, Matti, Prof., Aalto University, Department of Electrical Engineering and Automation, Finland
community energy network, demand response, electrical storage, microgrids, renewable energy systems, residential building energy management system, sustainability, thermal storage
Other note
  • [Publication 1]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Kyyrä, Jorma; Lehtonen, Matti. Battery energy storage effect on AC/DC microgrids efficiency. The 18th IEEE European Conference on Power Electronics and Applications (EPE'16 ECCE Europe). Karlsruhe, Germany, Sep. 5-9, 2016.
    DOI: 10.1109/EPE.2016.7695659 View at publisher
  • [Publication 2]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Pal, Sudip K.; Kyyrä, Jorma; Lehtonen, Matti. Optimizing energy cost via battery sizing in residential PV/battery systems. The 2015 IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies - Asia (ISGT ASIA). Bangkok, Thailand, Nov. 3-6, 2015.
    DOI: 10.1109/ISGT-Asia.2015.7387155 View at publisher
  • [Publication 3]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Lehtonen, Matti; Kyyrä, Jorma. Demand response control of a townhouse thermal storage by greedy variable neighbourhood algorithm. International Review of Electrical Engineering (IREE), vol. 11, no. 6, pp. 654-662, 2016.
    DOI: 10.15866/iree.v11i6.9951 View at publisher
  • [Publication 4]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Feng, Xianyong; Strank, Shannon; Hebner, Robert E.; Kyyrä, Jorma. Hardware-in-the-loop test for real time economic control of a DC microgrid. The 2018 IET 9th International Conference on Power Electronics, Machines and Drives (PEMD). Liverpool, UK, Apr. 17-19, 2018.
    DOI: 10.1049/joe.2018.8153 View at publisher
  • [Publication 5]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Kyyrä, Jorma; Lehtonen, Matti. Hardware-in-the-loop test for a residential partial thermal storage space heating demand response control. Submitted 2018.
  • [Publication 6]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Alanne, Kari; Okur, Özge; Kyyrä, Jorma; Lehtonen, Matti. Approaching net zero energy housing through integrated EV. Sustainable Cities and Society (SCS), vol. 38, pp. 534-542, 2018.
    DOI: 10.1016/j.scs.2018.01.042 View at publisher
  • [Publication 7]: Doroudchi, Elahe; Lehtonen, Matti; Kyyrä, Jorma. Optimizing residential energy costs through community energy network. Submitted 2018.