Name: Christinin Protopapadaki


KU Leuven

Promotor / Supervisor

Prof. dr. ir. Dirk Saelens

Samenvatting van het onderzoek / Summary of Research

European policies aiming to reduce residential energy use and carbon emissions promote energy efficiency in buildings, heating electrification and renewable electricity generation. Low-carbon technologies, such as heat pumps and rooftop photovoltaic systems (PV) can significantly affect electricity load patterns, with potential impacts on all levels of the electricity system. Technical constraints at the distribution grid level may limit the potential penetration of these technologies in practice, as it would require load control, specialized equipment, storage or grid reinforcement, at considerable cost. These issues, however, are often ignored or simplistically considered in high-level assessments. Therefore, this thesis develops a framework that allows to describe and quantify, in a probabilistic way, the impact of residential heat pumps and PV on low-voltage distribution grids. Application of this framework to Belgian residential low-voltage grids shows that increasing penetration of these technologies, especially heat pumps, could cause overloading and undervoltage problems, which would be worse in large rural feeders with moderately renovated dwellings. Based on the probabilistic framework, this thesis furthermore explores metamodeling as a method to allow a computationally inexpensive assessment of the grid impact. In this way, the results could be easily utilized in high-level studies. Overall, accurate predictions of grid impact indicators could be obtained with metamodels, suggesting that metamodeling has the potential to help incorporate local grid restrictions in large-scale assessments, for instance policy evaluation, urban planning or network management and design.

Volledige tekst van het doctoraat / full text

Examencommissie / Board of examiners

Prof. dr. ir. Dirk Saelens (promotor) 
Prof. dr. ir. Robert Puers (voorzitter/chairman) 
Prof. dr. ir. Johan Driesen (secretaris/secretary) 
Prof. dr. ir. Lieve Helsen 
Prof. dr. ir. Gustaaf Roels 
Prof. dr. Vincent Lemort , University of Liège 
Prof. dr. Jessen Page , University of Applied Arts and Sciences of Western Switzerland, HES-SO Valais-Wallis