Abstract: The modeling of cascading failure in power systems is difficult because of the many different mechanisms involved; no single model captures all of these mechanisms. Understanding the relative importance of these different mechanisms is important for choosing which mechanisms need to be modeled for particular applications. This work presents a dynamic simulation model of both power networks and protection systems, which can simulate a wider variety of cascading outage mechanisms relative to existing quasi-steady-state (QSS) models. This paper describes the model and demonstrates how different mechanisms interact. In order to test the model, we simulated a batch of randomly selected N-2 contingencies for several different static load configurations, and found that the distributions of blackout sizes and event lengths from the simulator correlate well with historical trends. The results also show that load models have significant impacts on the cascading risks. Finally, the dynamic model was compared against a simple dc-power-flow based QSS model; we find that the two models tend to agree for the early stages of cascading but produce substantially different results for later stages.
Abstract: Prior research has shown that autocorrelation and variance in voltage measurements tend to increase as power systems approach instability. This paper seeks to identify the conditions under which these statistical indicators provide reliable early warning of instability in power systems. First, the paper derives and validates a semi-analytical method for quickly calculating the expected variance and autocorrelation of all voltages and currents in an arbitrary power system model. Building on this approach, the paper describes the conditions under which filtering can be used to detect these signs in the presence of measurement noise. Finally, several experiments show which types of measurements are good indicators of proximity to instability for particular types of state changes. For example, increased variance in voltages can reliably indicate both proximity to a bifurcation and the location of increased stress. On the other hand, growth of autocorrelation in certain line currents is related less to a specific location of stress but, rather, is a reliable indicator of stress occurring somewhere in the system; in particular, it would be a clear indicator of approaching instability when many nodes in an area are under stress.
Abstract: This paper shows that the variance of load bus voltage magnitude in a small power system test case increases monotonically as the system approaches a Hopf bifurcation. This property can potentially be used as a method for monitoring oscillatory stability in power grid using high-resolution phasor measurements. Increasing variance in data from a dynamical system is a common sign of a phenomenon known as critical slowing down (CSD). CSD is slower recovery of dynamical systems from perturbations as they approach critical transitions. Earlier work has focused on studying CSD in systems approaching voltage collapse; In this paper, we investigate its occurrence as a power system approaches a Hopf bifurcation.
Abstract: Many dynamical systems, including power systems, recover from perturbations more slowly as they approach critical transitions - a phenomenon known as critical slowing down. If the system is stochastically forced, autocorrelation and variance in time-series data from the system often increase before the transition, potentially providing an early warning of coming danger. In some cases, these statistical patterns are sufficiently strong, and occur sufficiently far from the transition, that they can be used to predict the distance between the current operating state and the critical point. In other cases CSD comes too late to be a good indicator. In order to better understand the extent to which CSD can be used as an indicator of proximity to bifurcation in power systems, this paper derives autocorrelation functions for three small power system models, using the stochastic differential algebraic equations (SDAE) associated with each. The analytical results, along with numerical results from a larger system, show that, although CSD does occur in power systems, its signs sometimes appear only when the system is very close to transition. On the other hand, the variance in voltage magnitudes consistently shows up as a good early warning of voltage collapse.
Abstract: Critical slowing down (CSD) is the phenomenon in which a system recovers more slowly from small perturbations. CSD, as evidenced by increasing signal variance and autocorrela- tion, has been observed in many dynamical systems approaching a critical transition, and thus can be a useful signal of proximity to transition. In this paper, we derive autocorrelation functions for the state variables of a stochastic single machine infinite bus system (SMIB). The results show that both autocorrelation and variance increase as this system approaches a saddle-node bifurcation. The autocorrelation functions help to explain why CSD can be used as an indicator of proximity to criticality in power systems revealing, for example, how nonlinearity in the SMIB system causes these signs to appear.