Free Simulation Tools for Power Quality and Grid-Integration of Renewable Energies Cases
Keywords:Computer Simulation Tools, Open-source Software, Electromagnetic Transients Program, Power Flow Software
The analysis of Power Quality issues and/or the integration of renewable energy into the grid requires the use of different tools, among which the use of computer simulation applications stands out. The basic objective is to obtain a model of the electrical system under study that allows for knowledge, with a reasonable degree of precision, of its behavior under different operating conditions. The benefits of these tools are manifold, since they allow us to understand the response of the system, both in transient and steady-state conditions, to situations that are difficult to reproduce in practice: short circuits, failures in generation, transmission and distribution infrastructures, etc. Additionally, these tools can be used as platforms for operator training and network planning. Currently, a wide variety of commercial tools that are de facto standards can be found on the market. Some of these tools have a high cost and cannot be used by students outside the academic environment. In parallel, and thanks to the efforts of the scientific community, simulation tools have been developed that are available free of cost under several licensing models. This contribution analyzes some of the available tools, with special attention to those that are published under several open source and academic non-commercial software licenses that are available to the academic community free of cost.