Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation




Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Yuan Liao


Feeder reconfiguration is performed by changing the open/close status of two types of switches: normally open tie switches and normally closed sectionalizing switches. A whole feeder or part of a feeder may be served from another feeder by closing a tie switch linking the two while an appropriate sectionalizing switch must be opened to maintain the radial structure of the system. Feeder reconfiguration is mainly aiming to reduce the system overall power losses and improve voltage profile. In this dissertation, several approaches have been proposed to reconfigure the radial distribution networks including the potential impact of integrating Distributed Energy Resources (DER) into the grid. These approaches provide a Fast-Genetic Algorithm “FGA” in which the size and convergence speed is improved compared to the conventional genetic algorithm. The size of the population matrix is also smaller because of the simple way of constructing the meshed network.

Additionally, FGA deals with integer variable instead of a binary one, which makes FGA a unique method. The number of the mesh/loop is based on the number of tie switches in a particular network. The validity of the proposed FGA is investigated by comparing the obtained results with the one obtained from the most recent approaches. The second the approach is the implementation of the Differential Evolution (DE) algorithm. DE is a population-based method using three operators including crossover, mutation, and selection. It differs from GA in that genetic algorithms rely on crossover while DE relies on mutation. Mutation is based on the differences between randomly sampled pairs of solutions in the population. DE has three advantages: the ability to find the global optimal result regardless of the initial values, fast convergence, and requirement of a few control parameters. DE is a well-known and straightforward population-based probabilistic approach for comprehensive optimization.

In distribution systems, if a utility company has the right to control the location and size of distributed generations, then the location and size of DGs may be determined based on some optimization methods. This research provides a promising approach to finding the optimal size and location of the planned DER units using the proposed DE algorithm. DGs location is obtained using the sensitivity of power losses with respect to real power injection at each bus. Then the most sensitive bus is selected for installing the DG unit. Because the integration of the DG adds positive real power injections, the optimal location is the one with the most negative sensitivity in order to get the largest power loss reduction. Finally, after the location is specified, the proposed Differential Evolution Algorithm (DEA) is used to obtain the optimal size of the DG unit. Only the feasible solutions that satisfy all the constraints are considered.

The objective of installing DG units to the distribution network is to reduce the system losses and enhance the network voltage profile. Nowadays, these renewable DGs are required to equip with reactive power devices (such as static VAR compensators, capacitor banks, etc.), to provide reactive power as well as to control the voltage at their terminal bus. DGs have various technical benefits such as voltage profile improvement, relief in feeder loading, power loss minimization, stability improvement, and voltage deviation mitigation. The distributed generation may not achieve its full potential of benefits if placed at any random location in the system. It is necessary to investigate and determine the optimum location and size of the DG. Most distribution networks are radial in nature with limited short-circuit capacity. Therefore, there is a limit to which power can be injected into the distribution network without compromising the power quality and the system stability. This research is aiming to investigate this by applying DG technologies to the grid and keeping the system voltage within a defined boundary [0.95 - 1.05 p.u]. The requirements specified in IEEE Standard 1547 are considered.

This research considers four objectives related to minimization of the system power loss, minimization of the deviations of the nodes voltage, minimization of branch current constraint violation, and minimization of feeder’s currents imbalance. The research formulates the problem as a multi-objective problem. The effectiveness of the proposed methods is demonstrated on different revised IEEE test systems including 16 and 33-bus radial distribution system.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)