The addition of a 15 MW Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) Grid Simulator leverages the electrical infrastructure of the SCE&G Energy Innovation Center and allows wind turbine generator (WTG) manufacturers to test both mechanical and electrical characteristics of their machines in a well controlled and calibrated environment. By moving many electrical testing scenarios that were only previously available by field demonstrations into a controlled environment, the HIL Grid Simulator will give WTG manufacturers a platform to ensure new innovations meet even more stringent global electrical standards. This will increase reliability and lower the cost of energy delivered. The 15 MW HIL Grid Simulator will provide electrical testing beyond fault ride-through testing for the Center, to provide a complete suite of electrical testing solutions to the power conversion industry as a whole (not just the wind industry) at the multi-megawatt level.
The inclusion of Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) testing capabilities provides a platform above and beyond present standards for compliance testing (a static system) by simulating a detailed dynamic power system model in real-time where the device under test actually interacts with the simulated power system, all at full scale power levels. One area in which Hardware-In-the-Loop testing is particularly beneficial is performing parallel model verification, in which the differences between the actual device behavior and the detailed dynamic model of the device can be reconciled to provide a more robust and accurate model. This type of testing can identify and prevent costly and dangerous failures upon deployment and allows the customer to demonstrate their product in a safe and controlled environment, accelerate its introduction into the market and reduce the risk of new market introductions.