In future, photovoltaic systems that feed into Spain’s power grid can be equipped with the meteocontrol Power Plant Controller (PPC). The German manufacturer of PV monitoring and control systems announced that the certification of its blue’Log® XC Power Plant Controller has been completed in compliance with the Spanish standards. “We are very pleased that our modern Power Plant Controller will now also be available to our Spanish customers,” explains Fernando Ruiz-Ogarrio, sales manager meteocontrol Ibérica. “The blue’Log® XC has been proven to meet all the Spanish requirements for the islands and mainland,” continues Ruiz-Ogarrio.
Power Plant Controllers regulate and monitor the grid feed-in of renewable energies and thus contribute to the stability of the power grid. The equipment can receive and implement commands from the network operator as well as autonomously regulate the feed-in of active and reactive power depending on local network parameters. If the grid should become overloaded, they can curtail the feed-in power if necessary.
The Spanish standard sets exacting requirements
According to EU requirements, a Power Plant Controller must be capable of reacting to frequency changes within two seconds and be capable of adjusting the active power feed-in of the generating system accordingly. However, a reaction time of 500 milliseconds is expected in some EU member states and in mainland Spain. On the Spanish islands, Power Plant Controllers must be capable of responding to frequency changes within just 150 milliseconds. “We had to adapt our software and increase the sampling rate of our Power Plant Controller to react on frequency changes that quickly,” explains Christoph Fröhlich of meteocontrol, who managed the product certification process.
Why are Power Plant Controllers certified?
The number of feed-in electricity providers is increasing with the ‘clean energy transition’, and with this comes the challenge of maintaining the stability of power grids. That is why the European Union had adopted a regulation in 2016 (2016/631) and set out general grid connection rules. The EU regulation is implemented and defined by country. Spain published its specific requirements in 2020. However, different rules apply on the Spanish mainland (NTS SEPE) than on the islands (NTS SENP). The rules for the Spanish islands are more stringent where maintaining grid stability is more sensitive.