Significance of battery energy storage systems in mitigating the challenges in weak grids

Author Identifier

Andre Ramos

Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Master of Engineering Science


School of Engineering

First Supervisor

Iftekhar Ahmad

Second Supervisor

Daryoush Habibi

Third Supervisor

Thair S. Mahmoud


Power systems have undergone major transformations in recent years, with the main sources of generation shifting from fossil fuel generators to renewable energy sources (RES). This trend is expected to continue, as almost all government bodies have faced enormous public pressure to address climate crises. Consequently, decarbonizing the energy sector is one of the top priorities for almost all countries in the world. However, with increases in RESs connected to networks, the electric power industry has experienced a number of challenges, including weaker grids, low inertia, system congestion and voltage and frequency instability. This thesis investigates the role of battery energy storage systems in mitigating some of these challenges.

Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESSs) have proved effective in mitigating numerous problems caused by the high penetration of RESs. However, planning BESSs is an extremely important task, not only because of high costs of batteries, but also because misplacing BESSs can have a negative impact on grid reliability. This thesis has shed some light on novel planning solutions for connecting BESSs under challenging conditions, caused by the high penetration of RESs. In this research, the problem of connecting BESS under weak grid conditions has been modelled as a constrained optimization problem, with a goal to minimize voltage deviation and frequency response. The optimization problem was solved using a meta-heuristic approach called binary grey wolf optimization. Further, PowerFactory was used to model the grid and test system responses.

Since BESSs are expensive assets that can be used for multiple applications, including as potential solutions for mitigating weak grid challenges, in practice decisions regarding BESS sizes are heavily influenced by their cost benefit analysis. In this thesis, we also show how wholesale electricity market costs influence the sizing of BESSs.

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