Methods for increasing the potential of integration of EV chargers into the DC catenary of electric transport grids: A trolleygrid case study

Koen van der Horst, Ibrahim Diab*, Gautham Ram Chandra Mouli, Pavol Bauer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
33 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The traction substations of urban electric transport grids are oversized and underutilized in terms of their capacity. While their over-sizing is an unfortunate waste, their under-utilization creates the major hurdle for the integration of renewables into these grids due to the lack of a base load. Therefore, integrating smart grid loads such as EV chargers is not only an opportunity but a necessity for the sustainable transport grid of the future. This paper examines six methods for increasing the potential of EV chargers in three case studies of a trolleygrid, namely a higher substation no-load voltage, a higher substation power capacity, a smart charging method, adding a third overheard parallel line, adding a bilateral connection, and installing a multi-port converter between two substations. From the case studies, the most promising and cost-effective method seems to be introducing a bilateral connection, bringing a charging capacity for up to 175 electric cars per day. Meanwhile, other costly and complex methods, such as smart charging with grid state sensors and communication, can offer charging room for over 200 electric cars per day. Furthermore, using solar PV systems to power the grid showed a more than doubling of the directly utilized energy by installing a 150kW charger, from 19% to 41%. This reduces the power mismatch between the trolleygrid and the PV system from 81% to 59% and thereby reduces the severe economic need for storage, AC grid power exchange, or PV power curtailment while allowing a high penetration of renewables.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100271
Number of pages16
JournaleTransportation
Volume18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Keywords

  • DC grids
  • EV chargers
  • PV system
  • Transportation
  • Trolleygrids

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