Conference programme

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Delegates are invited to meet and discuss with the poster presenters during the poster presentation sessions between 10:30-11:30 and 16:00-17:00 on Thursday, 19 November 2015.

Lead Session Chair:
Stephan Barth, ForWind - Center for Wind Energy Research, Germany
Paul Manning NovoGrid, Ireland
Paul Manning (1) F Peter Richardson (1) Andrew Keane (2) Conor Murphy (2)
(1) NovoGrid, Dublin, Ireland (2) University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland

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Presenter's biography

Biographies are supplied directly by presenters at EWEA 2015 and are published here unedited

Paul Manning is a co-founder and the Commercial Director of NovoGrid, a spinout company from the Electricity Research Centre at University College Dublin. He has previously co‐founded two start‐ups in the high-tech and energy sectors.
Prior to that he worked for BiancaMed who developed patented sensors and software that monitored peoples sleeping patterns. BiancaMed were acquired by ResMed plc (NYSE: RMD).
Paul’s early career experience was as a project manager and business developer in the construction industry.
Paul has a MBA from the Smurfit Business School in University College Dublin.


Poster Download poster (6.84 MB)


Commercial implementation of grid electrical losses reduction service via a novel wind farm control solution


NovoGrid’s novel software-based control solution, enables wind farms to reduce electrical losses on both internal and local network lines by up to 40%.
This improved grid integration of the wind farm is made possible by optimising the reactive power output of their inverters in real-time.
The outcome for the wind farm is an increase to its annual energy production (AEP) and simultaneously may receive an improved loss adjustment factor (LAF) from the network operator.
The net benefit to the wind farm is up to a 12.5% increase in cash flow for its remaining life.


Our controller was developed as an efficient alternative to a fixed setting control scheme or one requiring a dedicated communications infrastructure.
It operates independently in the substation of a wind farm avoiding a need to coordinate control between wind farms and the network operator.
The only inputs required are local measurements in the wind farm’s substation.
Our controller then calculates the optimal reactive power setting required to adhere to voltage constraints.
By optimising the flow of reactive power on the surrounding network, our controller increases the capacity for active power to be exported from a generator.
Our controller reduces the active power losses on the lines surrounding a generator and the losses internal to a windfarm, increasing the net energy export.

Main body of abstract

The controller software is uploaded to a standalone remote terminal unit (RTU), which has been trialled as hardware-in-the-loop on an OpalRT Real-Time Simulator. The simulations use real-world network models and data from Irish wind farms.
The results of these simulations show an improvement in active power flow that equate to a 1.8% increase in annual revenue for the wind farm.
A system-wide rollout of the controller on all Irish distribution connected wind farms would result in a reduction of losses that exceeds the network operator’s annual losses reduction target.
The patent pending controller is an example of successful commercialisation of research from the Electricity Research Centre in University College Dublin by a new start-up company, NovoGrid.
Our controller is the focus of a trial being conducted in association with ESB Networks and the Irish Wind Energy Association and is funded by Enterprise Ireland and the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland.
The next stage in the trial is to validate the controller live on an actual wind farm. This stage is due to commence in October 2015.


The inverters in wind turbines are, due to their increasing number, sophistication and diverse locations, an untapped resource of benefits for the electrical grid.
Our controller is among the first control solutions that through the use of innovative technology commercialises this dormant capability. By improving how a wind farm integrates its reactive power with the grid, the network operator sees a welcome reduction in electrical losses and the wind farm gains an additional and bankable net profit stream.

Learning objectives
A successful example of the commercialisation of 3rd level research by a new start-up company.
A case study of cooperation between 3rd level research institute, a private company and the network operator to enable wind farms provide a grid support service.