Enhanced Electric Vehicle Integration in the UK Low Voltage Networks with Distributed Phase Shifting Control
Electric vehicles (EV) have gained global attention due to increasing oil prices and rising concerns about transportation-related urban air pollution and climate change. While mass adoption of EVs has several economic and environmental benefits, large-scale deployment of EVs on the low-voltage (LV) urban distribution networks will also result in technical challenges. This paper proposes a simple and easy to implement single-phase EV charging coordination strategy with three-phase network supply, in which chargers connect EVs to the less loaded phase of their feeder at the beginning of the charging process. Hence, network unbalance is mitigated and, as a result, EV hosting capacity is increased. A new concept, called Maximum EV Hosting Capacity (HC max) of low voltage distribution networks, is introduced to objectively assess and quantify the enhancement that the proposed phase-shifting strategy could bring to distribution networks. The resulting performance improvement has been demonstrated over three real UK residential networks through a comprehensive Monte Carlo simulation study using Matlab and OpenDSS tools. With the same EV penetration level, the under-voltage probability was reduced in the first network from 100% to 54% and in the second network from 100% to 48%. Furthermore, percentage voltage unbalance factors in the networks were successfully restored to their original values before any EV connection.