Reading: The Challenge of IPP's Plant Characteristics against the Power System Security


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Section II

The Challenge of IPP's Plant Characteristics against the Power System Security


A. C. S. Wijayatilake

Ceylon Electricity Board, LK
About A. C. S.

System Planning Engineer

BSc (Eng), Mphill, MIESL, MIEE

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When a utility owned new power plant is constructed it is a traditional practice to carry out detailed power system analysis to identify the most appropriate combination of plant characteristics to be incorporated into the new power plant since it has to be operated with the rest of the equipment used in the transmission system complying with the operational policies and standards. Hence, plant features and operational characteristics such as generator parameters, controller settings, excitation, relay settings, power factor and other auxiliary equipment settings etc. are determined based on the outcome of the detailed power system analysis done by transmission network planners. When system planners determine that a power plant feature is needed it is provided.


However, now we are in a competitive environment and Independent Power Producers (IPPs) more concentrated about their return on selling power neglecting the importance of coordinated system design and operation. Cost optimization results in removing or limiting certain valuable features from the IPP owned power plant which are very important for system operators to maintain the expected level of system security. At the prevailing environment utility has very limited control over determining the characteristics of IPP's machines. Resulting plant characteristics are far from optimum from a system standpoint. As a consequence the transmission network security reduces and increases the probability of having system blackouts. If there is a lack of long range planning these issues may not highlight until the operational staff realize that IPPs may not provide traditional plant characteristics and features when system is subjected to the severe stress. However, then the utility has to introduce more costly transmission solutions to regain the network security.

How to Cite: Wijayatilake, A.C.S., 2007. The Challenge of IPP's Plant Characteristics against the Power System Security. Engineer: Journal of the Institution of Engineers, Sri Lanka, 40(3), pp.53–63. DOI:
Published on 26 Jul 2007.
Peer Reviewed


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