ERCOT panel OKs automatic wind, solar operating plan updates
Current operating plans in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas would be automatically updated with the next seven day’s forecast for wind and photovoltaic solar generation under a rule change approved by ERCOT’s Technical Advisory Committee Thursday.
A qualified scheduling entity — a market participant that is authorized to communicate operations with ERCOT — submits a current operating plan each hour reflecting expected operating conditions for each of the resources that it represents for each hour in the next seven operating days. The COP includes resource operational data, status and ancillary service schedule.
Under current rules, each QSE submits a COP that includes a “high sustained limit” — that is, an expected maximum sustained production volume — for wind and PV resources equal to or less than ERCOT’s corresponding wind or solar power forecasts, which are presented to QSEs about 10 minutes past every hour.
ERCOT sponsored Nodal Protocol Revision Request 785, which automates the wind and solar forecast inclusion in COPs, because, “ERCOT has observed inconsistencies among QSEs as to when and how they update the COPs for resources they represent,” according to the original filing, submitted by Sandip Sharma, ERCOT operations planning manager.
“These inconsistencies and variations in updating the COPs presents bigger challenges for grid reliability when the resources’ COP HSL does not closely match the forecast,” the filing stated. “In addition, because of this multi-entity process, ERCOT is limited in how often the forecast can be updated, especially during periods where weather information is rapidly changing.”
As of April 1, ERCOT had 16,500 MW of wind capacity, which is expected to grow to 20,000 MW by the end of 2017, while solar installed capacity is expected to hit 1,481 MW by that time, the filing stated.
Automatically updating the material based on ERCOT’s forecasts more consistently would reduce the reliability challenges and allow ERCOT to provide more timely forecasts, the filing stated.