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Network studies for the interconnection of a concentrating solar power plant in a weak distribution network in the Upington area

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4 Author(s)
Nhlanhla Mbuli ; Department of Electrical Engineering, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa ; Dalton Matshidza ; JHC Pretorius ; Ronald Xezile

At present, Eskom is investigating the feasibility of connecting a concentrating solar power (CSP) plant in the distribution network located in Upington. This is informed by the Integrated Strategy Energy Plan (ISEP) which is a corporate plan for future energy needs, including the type of fuels to be used and the timing of the commissioning of various plans. The CSP plant under investigation will be the first one of its kind in the country. This paper presents the results of the analysis of interconnection requirements for the plant. The Upington network where the CSP is planned for connection is a very weak network, characterized by very long lines supplying loads located remotely from the main network. Loadflow analysis, short circuit studies, and transient stability assessment were carried out. Finally, the scope of work and estimated costs of the interconnection requirements were produced. The paper discusses the aspects mentioned and highlights the benefits of the interconnection of the CSP plant to this network.

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Date of Conference:

13-15 Sept. 2011