The Energy Transition’s Impact on the Accumulated Average Efficiency of Large Hydrogenerators
The energy transition is aimed to take advantage of the operational flexibility of hydropower to extend the in- tegration of intermittent renewable sources. Consequently, the hydrogenerators will have to operate in regimes far away from their designed best-point operation. In order to accurately assess the impact, this paper presents a useful approach to determine the overall operating efficiency of synchronous generators under intermittent operation. An accumulated average efficiency (AAE) model is proposed and compared against an alternative approach; the weighted average efficiency (WAE) model. It is found that the WAE approach produces unrealistic low efficiencies when the generator operates in synchronous condenser mode (SCM) for long periods. In general, the AAE supersedes the WAE for all the different load distributions that were investigated. This was further illustrated by a worked example and by constructing more complex load distributions. A load distribution dominated by SCM yields a difference as high as 33.18%, while an even distribution deviates 1.43 % in their respective efficiencies. Finally, a yearly on-site measurement of our studied 103MVA generator’s concentrated load distribution revealed a discrepancy of 0.67 %, which is a significant deviation considering what the operating regime would mean in terms of economic implications.