IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - 47

Power (MW)

Observed COI Power (Dittmer Control Center)
4,600
4,400
4,200
4,000
0

10

20

30

40

50 60
Time (s)
(a)

70

80

90

Power (MW)

Simulated COI Power (Initial WSCC Base Case)
4,600
4,400
4,200
4,000
0

10

20

30

40

50 60
Time (s)
(b)

70

80

90

figure 2. Significant differences existed between (a) the
actual disturbance recordings and (b) the simulation at the
California-Oregon Intertie (COI).

finally, staged testing is planned and is generally run
while the plant is shut down for normal operation. This has
been effective for building power plant models, but it notably does not contain vital information on the response of the
power plant to a transmission-level system disturbance.

The BPA Power Plant
Model Validation Project
in 1999, the bPa began efforts to develop techniques for validating power plant models using data from PMUs installed
at the generators' points of interconnection, with the goal
of supplementing the traditional power plant model validation methods described above. Disturbance recordings could

then be compared with simulations, and the power plant
models could be adjusted to more accurately predict future
responses to disturbances.
The bPa worked with general electric (ge)-the provider of the power system load flow (PSlf) simulation
software used to simulate the power grid in the Wecc-to
develop capabilities within the PSlf application to play actual
disturbance recordings into grid simulations. The bPa applied
this capability to several of the hydroelectric generators in the
bPa's service territory (including the Dalles Dam, shown in
figure 3), resulting in significant revisions in the turbine governor models.
in 2003, the bPa worked with Transalta to extend the
work from hydroelectric generators to a large, coal-fired
power plant, using disturbance recordings to supplement
baseline tests and confirm the validity of the generator models at Transalta's centralia power plant, near centralia,
Washington. The approach greatly minimized the time that
the generator was required to be off-line, resulting in significant cost savings for the generator owner.
in 2006, the Wecc approved its generating Unit Model
validation Policy, requiring power plant owners to provide
evidence every five years that their models are accurate and
up to date. Under certain circumstances, using PMU disturbance data with a PSlf play-in function (as described
below) can be an acceptable method for power plant model
validation. having PMU recordings therefore helps bPa
customers comply with Wecc policy.
The PMU disturbance recordings are used on a regular
basis for power plant model verification. When an accurate
baseline of a power plant's behavior is developed, the PMU
data can be used to detect control-related abnormalities. in
2009, for example, bPa engineers noticed that the 750-MW
grand coulee hydropower generators responded very differently to a system oscillation than the expected baseline
would have predicted. The generator's power oscillations
persisted, while the expected response was well dampened
(see figure 4). further examination suggested that the generator's power system stabilizer (PSS) was not functioning.

Power (MW)

602.00
561.67
521.33
481.00
11.0

figure 3. The Dalles Generating Station, at the Dalles Dam
on the Columbia River, was the first power plant where
BPA's synchrophasor-based modeling technique was demonstrated. (Source: United States Geological Survey.)
may/june 2014

12.6

14.2
15.8
Time (s)

17.4

19.0

figure 4. In 2009, the Grand Coulee hydropower generator's response to an oscillation (blue) differed from the
expected baseline response (red), helping engineers to
determine that the power system stabilizer had failed.
ieee power & energy magazine

47



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014

IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - Cover1
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - Cover2
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IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - Cover3
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