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High Voltage DC systems with Grid Forming capability

   School of Engineering

About the Project

HVDC are becoming essential and preferred interconnection methods for large scale renewable energy sources, because

of technical, economic and environmental advantages [1]. UK and EU have ambition to significantly reduce fossil -fuel based generation and this might lead to the situation of reduction of synchronous generation and close to 100% generation based on power electronics [2].

Significantly different control solutions are required with HVDC Modular Multilevel Converters in order to enable satisfactory transmission system operation with substantial number of HVDC in the same system [3],[4].

Grid forming control is much different control topology for HVDC, which has been investigated in the past 5 years including some promising results in the recent European research projects [5].

This project will evaluate proposed grid forming control methods, assess performance limitations and aim to develop new control solutions suitable in the context of future topology of Scottish and UK transmission systems.

We will be developing new analytical models, which will facilitate study of the frequency variation in addition to the traditional methods based on current and voltage. The modelling work will be based on MATLAB state-space approaches but also using detailed professional platforms like PSCAD/EMTDC. The stability study will exploit eigenvalue approaches and also frequency-domain methods. Modern control-system design methods will be adopted.

Selection will be made on the basis of academic merit. The successful candidate should have, or expect to obtain, a UK Honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent) in electrical or control engineering. 


Formal applications can be completed online: https://www.abdn.ac.uk/pgap/login.php

• Apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering

• State name of the lead supervisor as the Name of Proposed Supervisor

• State ‘Self-funded’ as Intended Source of Funding

• State the exact project title on the application form

When applying please ensure all required documents are attached:

• All degree certificates and transcripts (Undergraduate AND Postgraduate MSc-officially translated into English where necessary)

• Detailed CV, Personal Statement/Motivation Letter and Intended source of funding

Informal inquiries can be made to Prof D Jovcic () with a copy of your curriculum vitae and cover letter. All general enquiries should be directed to the Postgraduate Research School ()

Funding Notes

This PhD project has no funding attached and is therefore available to students (UK/International) who are able to seek their own funding or sponsorship. Supervisors will not be able to respond to requests to source funding. Details of the cost of study can be found by visiting View Website


[1] D Jovcic "High Voltage Direct Current Transmission: Converters Systems and DC Grids", 2nd edition Wiley, 2019, ISBN: 978-1-119-56654-0.
[2] Ierna, Richard and Zhu, Jiebei and Roscoe, Andrew J. and Yu, Mengran and Dysko, Adam and Booth, Campbell D. and Urdal, Helge (2016) Effects of VSM convertor control on penetration limits of non-synchronous generation in the GB power system. In: 15th Wind Integration Workshop, 2016-11-15
[3] H. Saad, P. Rault, S. Dennetière, M. Schudel, C. Wikstrom and K. Sharifabadi, "HIL Simulation to Assess Interaction Risks of HVDC Systems for Upcoming Grid Development," IECON 2020 The 46th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society, 2020, pp. 5041-5048,
[4] B. Badrzadeh, N. Modi, N. Crooks, A. Jalali “Power System Operation with Reduced System Strength or Inverter-connected Generation during Prior Outage Conditions” CIGRE Science and Engineering, Issue 17, February 2020, pp 141-149
[5] Migrate, Deliverable 3.6: “Requirement guidelines for operating a grid with 100% power electronic devices”, Migrate EU project, 2019, https://www.h2020-migrate.eu/

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