CAREER EPISODE NARRATIVE 2
In this episode, I would summarize
one of my empirical research projects that I completed in July 2016 for the
fulfillment of my Masters of Engineering degree in UNISA and project was named
as “Microgrid Energy Management System”. It was a group research project partly
done by myself and my two classmates, and supervised by my professor.
Literature review was contributed by all group members and analyzed microgrid
system with two different SCADA systems. I choose to work on one of those two
SCADA systems using Wonderwares Intouch software, and
analyze it for energy management.
increasing demand of electricity all over the world, the quality of electricity
is affected due to centralized generation and transmission through long
distribution line. There is an ongoing research and innovation of new
technologies for the generation of electricity in mostly developed countries.
To achieve the quality standards of electricity transmission, microgrid technology
and some other related technologies were implemented and assessed for the
results. Our project was based on developing microgrid system and managing
energy generated from that system.
Objective: The main objective of this project was to develop supervisory
control and data acquisition (SCADA) system using software LabVIEW and
Wonderwares Intouch. The other related objectives were to test the hardware
components for suitability to microgrid system and propose energy management
system for it to allow remote access and control from remote power laboratory.
The project was assigned us
in a group of three. We contributed together in literature research whereas I individually
performed the developing stage of energy management system for microgrid using software.
I divided my tasks in three stages: i) selecting hardware components, ii) developing
hardware, iii) Connecting hardware with microgrid, and iv) developing SCADA
system. In order to complete it in an efficient manner and within specified
Nature of the research: This project was
fairly of technical nature. As part of a team for this project, I reviewed
various types of microgrid systems currently in use. Microgrid technologies
were requirement as essential part of the project laboratory work and I needed
to assess them for financial feasibility, availability and development
supported in installation of microgrid. All of the stages I performed required
feasible hardware and efficient software within mechatronics laboratory of
Personal Engineering Activity
I started stages with the
selection of hardware which was the most crucial task as it requires
compatibility of all components of that hardware. I studied the descriptions of
all the components that could be used to work remotely without a connection of
main power grid.
To proceed with designing
solar panels, I decided to list some of the components that could fulfill the
purpose of constructing the hardware for this project. The selected components
are listed below along with their descriptions:
Components of hardware
Tindo Solar Karra
Solar charge Controller
Max power point
tracking (MPPT) eco-worthy 20 A
Solar Panel Stand
Hyacinth P-300 6
Wind charge controller
Wind turbine stand
GT D23LT (lead
Electrically isolated (230 VAC)
Current (power) Sensor
20K ohm resistors
T9AS1D22-12 by TE
1: Components required for Hardware construction
The other components besides the above list
include programming logic controller (Allan Bradley Micrologix 1400 PLC), data
acquisition (DAQ) card (USB-6009 with 8 analog input), relay driving circuit
(for transistor driven relay), voltage regulator (LM 7812 with +12V),
multiplexer (semiconductor 4051 single analog 8 Ch.), and anemometer with
analog output ranging from 0.2-4V for 0 to 32.4 m/s wind speed.
selection of hardware components, I had to test them for correct output
voltages and voltage sensors value using digital multimeter (DMM) and PLC or
DAQ. I tested the following major components:
The solar panels were tested under
full sun and Voc was found as 37V and Isc current was 8.7A that matches hardware
Measuring the Voc voltage and wind
speed using anemometer. I observed 14V with wind speed of 10 m/s, 9V with 7 m/s
and 1V with wind speed of 3 m/s, which shows consistency in results.
Three voltage sensors were made for
testing solar panel, wind turbine and battery voltage. I used the voltage
divider formula to calculate voltage without correction:
Then I made the corrections by using compensation value
of 2.1012 which were finally used in SCADA program.
I measured the voltage output of the current sensor in PLC
ladder logic program particular current flow.
The solar panel and
wind turbine were connected in parallel to battery (figure 1), and stability
was maintained by SCADA system:
Figure 1: Completed Hardware for Microgrid System
SCADA system implementation
For SCADA system
implementation, I used Wonderware Intouch software to adjust supervisory level
and MicroLogix 1400 PLC to define control level. I described step by step
procedure of software in my project report. The SCADA system was operated in
automated mode and manual mode. In result, the power consumed by AC side was
89.87W with 0.39A current with load connected in automate mode, whereas it was
67.40W with 0.29A current in manual mode.
2: Automated mode of SCADA system with no load connected
CE 2.10: In conclusion, the SCADA system was developed to allow remote access
and control of microgrid system. The supervisor verified the results obtained
from SCADA implementation and appreciated my efforts in this project. The most
complicated part of this system was testing the components as part of
structured hardware for this project. Regular meetings and guidance provided by
the supervisor I could successfully complete this project on time. My
supervisor guided me in troubleshooting issues faced in Wonderware Intouch
software while developing SCADA system.
CE 2.11: All the objectives were achieved and at the end of this project I
felt that this system should be erected in countries where electricity
generation is needed. By using this renewable resource it is possible to have a
cleaner environment and avoid electricity generation using fossil fuels.
CE 2.12: This project enhanced my knowledge, improved my communication skills and
was helpful for me to gain good knowledge and experience. It was a platform for
me to experiment and apply my electrical skills, understand the basic principle
and working on SCADA System, and how they are implemented with microgrid
CE 2.13: The literature review and supervisor’s support
in application of software were great help in developing successful microgrid system.
From selection of most suitable and cost effective components for hardware to
the implementing the SCADA system, I arranged all tasks with their constraints
and allocated estimated time for completion. I contacted different suppliers in
lieu and prepared a log sheet of each component as a process of testing hardware
thus achieved the desired outcome.