Discuss Dno in the Solar PV Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

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jason121

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Had a few drinks last night with a mate from DNO high upin the ranks, let slip that DNO don’t want PV installed that’s why they takethe full 65 days for applications. Too much work for them altering network and processing paper work
 

Somecamel

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It more to do with the fact that our distribution network needs major upgrades to be able to deal with any local generation. This is being done but will take years.
 

Gavin A

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that's my impression too. Most of the engineers on the ground though are actually pretty interested in it, at least once they realise you know what you're talking about and are treating them with professional courtesy etc.
 

Eco Deal

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Watch an intresting program about the national grid last year!

forgot its name but i bet most of you guys seen it too .

really outdated grid
 
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PVdesign

I had five enquiries for large scale pv (between 5-10MW) all denied by DNO because the local grid couldn't take the capacity. They said restructuring is taking place now and won't be complete till 2015 but there's already a back log of applications so it will probably be more like 2023!!! It's frustrating as I've been asking what's the maximum we could install but not getting an answer.
 

stef

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So, from what I read from your posts, not every potential property is actually suitable for PV?
 
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PVdesign

These are large scale solar farms as apposed to SSEG's. I don't think domestic systems are too much of a problem. We now email a contact within the DNO with post codes and locations before filling out any G59 forms.
 

Worcester

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See another post someweher else, problem is the network transformers can't reverse feed the grid, so all energy has to be 'consumed' locally, hence the problems, that coupled with lots of microgen gently pushing up the voltage causes problems - a lot of local transformers are already on the 1st tap, to now go and change the upstream one, would then mean retapping all the local ones ....... hence the big headaches..
 

moggy1968

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See another post someweher else, problem is the network transformers can't reverse feed the grid, so all energy has to be 'consumed' locally, hence the problems, that coupled with lots of microgen gently pushing up the voltage causes problems - a lot of local transformers are already on the 1st tap, to now go and change the upstream one, would then mean retapping all the local ones ....... hence the big headaches..
so how do the Germans do it?
Has this been independantly verified or are we just taking the DNOs word for it?
 

Worcester

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The Germans re-engineered their grid a while ago, and so did the Spanish, they both have smart control over their grids (the Spanish have a shed load of wind power that causes them all sorts of challenges) - check out some of the specs of the SMA inverters and you'll see that the DNO has the ability to remotely control the exported output of the system. (I'm suprised that isn't part of the new G83 spec actually) These comments came out of long technical discussions with our 'local' DNO when we were having issues with a number of 50kWp systems hitting the G59 254 V limit and so taking out one of the inverters, - we looked at all the possible solutions and causes, - the cause was a lot of local generation not being consumed locally, so they were about to install a bunch of new local transformers as the existing ones were already on the first tap, and instead 'allowed' us to re-configure the inverters to G83 using the pre March 2012 relaxation originally brought on for wind. Seeing as they had given us permission for much larger systems than we eventually installed, they took full responsibility and were about to go spend a lot of money on new local transformers.
 

BruceB

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I would be interested to read any DNO paper on it. I would have thought that the issue is not so much that you cannot reverse feed the grid; you can as transformers are essentially two-way devices. It is that when you do then what was a voltage drop becomes a voltage rise and if the network was never designed for that then the DNO has a problem as it will quickly go out of spec on voltage. I have some sympathy with the DNOs, but not much. There are plenty of examples around here where the LV system is ancient and underspecified for the number of houses on it, but the DNO tries to wring the last morsel of profit out of it before upgrading.

There is a balance that has to be found by Ofgem/DECC as to what should be lumped on the DNOs to take responsibility for and sort out (effectively added to everyone's bill) and what they should be able to pass onto individual customers. They always have a local monopoly which in the nature of things will be taken advantage of without strong, responsive and agile regulation by the regulator to further Government policies.
 
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moggy1968

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So in other words a lack of planning and investment in the infrastructure because the electricity companies would rather make excessive profits for their shareholders?
sorry, no sympathy at all for the DNOs. They should have seen this coming and planned for it, and without adding it to peoples bills.
I see this as an excuse to restrict the amount of renewable energy out there in private hands.
In Germany domestic roofs with 100 panels on are not ususual and you rarely see systems as small as we are forced to have over here. Thats one reason why their tariff is sustainable at a lower rate than ours.
 

Worcester

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Just got off the phone to a german partner and they are having major grid issues with too much unpredicatable solar and wind !!! They need strorage and are talking of generating hydrogen as a possible means. Seems that haven;t got enough mountain areas and too many issues over planning for pumped storage. They are also talking of major new smart grid upgrades to cope...
Seems like press only get half the story - the bit they want us to hear!
 

moggy1968

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Seems like press only get half the story - the bit they want us to hear!
Shurley Shome Mishtake! I believe everything I read in the Mail!

My mate the physicist reckons hydrogen is the way to go, so much so he is designing an off grid PV/Hydrogen system for his pad in France.

Storage and reliability of supply are probably the next big issues to face the renewables industry. Regretably it's very unlikely the answer will come from the UK.
 

moggy1968

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My mate the physicist (again) is well into his 60s now and working on nuclear sub development. HIs job is secure because nobody younger has the scientific skill set. They have just had to bring an 80+ year old guy out of retirement as a consultant (proton physics I believe) for the same reason.
Science in this country is rapidly heading the same way as our manufacturing industry.
 
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