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Automation is acknowledged by distribution utilities as a successful investment strategy to enhance reliability and operation efficiency. However, practical approaches that can handle the complex decision-making process faced by decision makers to justify the long-term financial effects of distribution automation have remained scarce. An automated and remote-controlled sectionalizing switch play a fundamental role in an automated distribution network. This paper introduces a new optimization approach for distribution automation in terms of automated and remotely controlled sectionalizing switch placement. Mixed-integer linear programming (MILP) is utilized to model the problem. The proposed model can be solved with large-scale commercial solvers in a computationally efficient manner. The proposed sectionalizing switch placement problem considers customer outage costs in conjunction with sectionalizing switch capital investment, installation, as well as annual operation and maintenance costs. The effectiveness of the proposed approach is tested on a reliability test system and a typical real size system. The presented results indicate the accuracy and efficiency of the proposed method.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2012