Solar PV Hosting Capacity of Distribution Networks: The Benefits of Non-Traditional Solutions


Invited Talk

Electricity distribution companies in many countries around the world are finding it challenging to allow residential customers to continue to install photovoltaic (PV) systems due to the potential technical impacts resulting from high penetrations. To remove these barriers, speed up connection times, and reduce costs, it is crucial for distribution companies to increase the PV hosting capacity of their low and medium voltage networks. Adequately exploiting the capabilities of existing and new network assets, PV inverters and batteries will be key.

This talk presents the benefits from adopting non-traditional solutions such as strict Volt-Watt and Volt-Var PV inverter settings, OLTC-fitted LV transformers, Battery Energy Storage (BES) systems with Off-the-Shelf (OTS) and smarter controllers in combination with traditional solutions, and dynamic voltage target at zone substation OLTC aiming at increasing the solar PV hosting capacity of PV-rich distribution networks. The study was carried out as part of the project "Advanced Planning of PV-Rich Distribution Networks" funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and the distribution company AusNet Services. It includes the results of one the most advanced, highly-granular, detailed studies performed on multiple fully-modelled 22kV feeders (i.e., urban and rural, including pseudo low voltage networks) from Victoria, Australia considering time-series seasonal analyses and growing penetrations of solar PV. Findings show that the adaptive control of OLTC-fitted LV transformers can effectively manage voltages and, in combination with network augmentation, can increase hosting capacity to 100%. OTS BES systems do not change the hosting capacity as they are unable to reduce peak PV exports (they become full early in the day). However, advanced BES controllers that do reduce exports (such as the investigated Network Smart controller), could help increase hosting capacity to 100% without much need for network augmentation. The strict Volt-Watt and Volt-Var settings, as well as the dynamic voltage target at the primary substation OLTC, are effective in mitigating voltage problems. However, asset congestion can still occur, limiting their ability to significantly increase hosting capacity.

  Date and Time




  • Date: 23 Sep 2021
  • Time: 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
  • All times are (GMT+10:00) Australia/NSW
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Password: 153285

  • Co-sponsored by Jahangir Hossain
  • Starts 09 August 2021 10:00 AM
  • Ends 23 September 2021 10:00 PM
  • All times are (GMT+10:00) Australia/NSW
  • No Admission Charge


Prof. Nando Ochoa Prof. Nando Ochoa of The University of Melbourne


Solar PV Hosting Capacity of Distribution Networks: The Benefits of Non-Traditional Solutions


Luis(Nando) Ochoa is a Professor of Smart Grids and Power Systems at The University of Melbourne, Australia. He is an IEEE PES Distinguished Lecturer, an Editorial Board Member of the IEEE Power and Energy Magazine, and an IEEE Senior Member. His expertise in network integration of distributed energy resources (DER) and smart grids as well as his extensive portfolio of industrial and academic projects have led to 180+ research papers, 70+ technical reports, and two patents. From 2011 to 2021, he was full and part-time with The University of Manchester, UK. From 2007 to 2010 he was a Research Fellow in Energy Systems at the University of Edinburgh, UK. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering from UNI (Peru), and a Research MSc and a PhD in Electrical Power Engineering, both from UNESP Ilha Solteira (Brazil).

IEEE NSW PES chapter and IEEE PES Chapters Student Activities Committee