with Distributed Generation: Interconnection
consideration when installing a DG technology is the interconnection of the device
to the electric utility system.
is the physical connection of on-site generation to the electric utility's distribution
grid. It requires the customer and utility to install a variety of relays and
monitoring devices on the customer's premises and at the connecting distribution
lines to ensure stability and protection of the grid and protection of the customer's
site and generation. The complexity and costs of the interconnection tend to increase
with the scale of the on-site generation project. The costs of interconnection
at the customer's site and required upgrades to the distribution system are paid
for by the customer.
to interconnection that need to be addressed by regulators and utilities before
DG markets can thrive include:
concerns at the point of interconnection
- Safety issues
posed by grid connection
system reliability impacts
- Lack of uniform
In the United
States, common standards for interconnecting DG devices into the utility system
do not presently exist. The lack of common standards is considered a barrier to
the wide acceptance and installation of DG technologies.
A key to accomplishing
these goals is the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) P1547
Standard for Distributed Resources Interconnected With Electric Power Systems.
While intended as a voluntary consensus standard, it is likely to be refined and
even adopted in many places.
in DG applications -- including suppliers, marketers, engineers and end users
-- would have a clear set of rules in place across the U.S. Many believe such
a standard will lead to wide commercialization of the DG concept and boost many
of the specific technologies.