Conference paper Open Access

Exploiting flexibility of radio base stations in local DSO markets for congestion management with shared balancing responsibility between TSO and DSO

Madina, Carlos; Jimeno, J.; Merino, J.; Pardo, Miguel; Marroquin, M.; Estrade, Eric

Electric power systems are facing major challenges as fossil fuel generation is replaced by renewable generation, which is often characterised by variable behaviour. This increases the need for resources to be used to guarantee voltage and frequency stability and to ensure power quality. At the same time, an increasing number of flexible demand and storage systems are being located at distribution level. All these resources can potentially provide network services if they are aggregated effectively. To achieve this, however, the roles of the diverse network stakeholders –transmission systems operators (TSOs), distribution systems operators (DSOs) and aggregators– should be reshaped. Together, the way realtime electricity markets are organised must also be adapted to reflect the new operating environment.

The project SmartNet ( compares five TSO-DSO coordination schemes and different real-time market architectures with the aim of finding out which one could deliver the best compromise between costs and benefits for the system. An ad-hoc-developed platform is used to carry out simulations on three benchmark countries –Italy, Denmark and Spain– whose results are used to perform a cost-benefit analysis. This analysis compares the benefits drawn by the system with the ICT costs needed to implement each coordination scheme. In parallel, three demonstration projects (pilots) are deployed for testing specific technological solutions to enable monitoring, control and participation in ancillary services provision from flexible entities located in distribution networks.

This paper summarises the achievements of the Spanish pilot during the first two years of operation. The pilot includes technical and economic aspects, under the “Shared balancing responsibility model”, to demonstrate the feasibility of using urban, distributed radio base stations to provide ancillary services for the DSO through demand side management. In this model, the balancing responsibility is divided between the TSO and the DSO, so that each of them must ensure a predefined schedule in the common border. With that aim, the DSO organises a local market to respect the schedule agreed with the TSO, while the TSO has no access to resources connected to the distribution grid. Commercial market parties such as aggregators become flexibility providers of aggregated distributed energy resources at the local market and the DSO allocates flexibility among them in a competitive manner. Additionally, the local market is used also by the DSO for managing the congestions in its own grid.

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