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Implementing digitalization in Turkish distribution networks


Project description

The aim of this project is to increase welfare of low-income population in Southeast Turkey by achieving savings in the distribution network that serves them. This will come from digitalizing the energy systems and decreasing power losses. It will allow more renewable energy installations, leading to long term economic benefits.

Turkey faces pressing challenges in power systems operation, particularly due to low energy efficiency. In the presence of renewable energy generation, network losses and voltage profiles become impossible to improve without novel solutions based on digital technologies. The project addresses three main facets of this problem.

Firstly, Turkey has set an ambitious target for 2023 - 30% of the total power to come from clean energy. Achieving this will require drastic adaptations of network operations to accommodate the variability and lack of predictability in comparison with conventional generators. This project will ensure short term benefits to solar energy installers by increasing the renewable energy uptake. The industrial partner is a distribution network operator serving 5.5 million customers, mostly in Southeast Turkey, with high energy losses. We target an efficiency increase of 0.5% as direct result of the project, saving £1m per year. On medium term, the project will help improve employment rates in Turkey by training personnel to install new technologies. By enabling investment in sustainable energy on large scale, the project will promote economic benefits and increased population welfare in Turkey. Secondly, energy efficiency can only be achieved through development of novel solutions to enable incremental additions of renewables. The short term benefits brought by the project will be creating a leading team of researchers at the forefront of innovation in reducing network losses and maintaining suitable voltage profiles. Early career researchers will benefit directly from the project by improving their career paths.

Finally, clean energy technologies will disrupt not only the way energy networks are managed, but also the way energy is used by the general population. The project will create a new hub for digitalization of energy systems to help in training low income and energy-vulnerable population to understand energy efficiency.

Industrial Partners: DEDAS Turkey

Project Duration: Feb 2020—Feb 2022

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