Determination of Automation Demands for Improved Controllability and Observability in Distribution Networks (DECODE)





Project description

The increasing share of distributed and renewable generation units and demand response resources in distribution grids necessitates improvement of its supervision, monitoring and control schemes for reliable operation. Thereby distribution grids have to be made more intelligent using innovative methods, solutions and automation. It is therefore expected to have more smart meters, switches and field sensors installed under its operation domain. So a large volume of information has to be managed to integrate the grid-derived processes into utility systems and practices which is expensive and unrealistic. Further, the application of these data is diverse and processed at different rates. So, the main challenge for the distribution system operator is to achieve efficient operation and control of such active grids with accurate information about the state of the grid by making use of the existing infrastructures to a large extent and then install minimum of possible metering and automation devices for reducing the overall costs. This project develops innovative methods and techniques not only for accurately estimating performance of the distribution grids but also for providing alternatives to control, protect and operate the system assets to ensure safe and reliable electricity to all consumers and maximise utilisation of local renewable energy.




  • To develop and verify novel and robust state estimation procedures and models for control and protection solutions which accurately measure and are able to affect the system states of grid assets in electricity distribution networks. The solutions are applied to produce an optimal distribution grid management system for DSO operations that ensures the best utilisation of assets and integration of renewable based distributed energy resources in a sustainable manner, and at the same time keeping the automation and thereby the costs to a minimum.
  • To analyse the requirements and benefits of smart automation schemes and processes in the existing distribution management systems and to understand what is necessary to be newly installed and implemented in order to facilitate and achieve techno-economic efficiency.
  • To investigate the scope of appropriate interfaces between DSO and transmission system operator (TSO) for system security and reliability. The solutions developed in this project for improved observability and controllability of the active distribution grids is applied to enable the active participation of DERs and loads in energy markets and ancillary services.

Work Packages


Work Packages

 WP Leader

WP1: Use Cases and System Architecture: Active Distribution Grid Management Kenergy
WP2: Hierarchical and Distributed Control Framework for Active Distribution Grids ABB
WP3: Enhanced Observability of Active Distribution grids AAU-DET
WP4: Adaptive System Protection and Coordination for Active Distribution Grids ABB
WP5: Advanced Distribution Grid Management System for Active Networks ABB
WP6: Performance Assessment of Intelligent Distribution Grids Eniig
WP7: Distribution Grid Interface between System Utility and Electricity Markets  AAU – DET
 WP8: Project Management, Administration and Dissemination of Results AAU – DET




Professor Birgitte Bak-Jensen
Direct phone: +45 9940 9274
Mobile: +45 2124 8501


April 01, 2016 – September 30, 2019


Name of the programme: PSO-ForskEL

Total project amount (DKK): 8,809,300

Grant No: 12414