Propagation of wind-power-induced fluctuations in power grids
Renewable generators perturb the electric power grid with heavily non-Gaussian and time correlated fluctuations. While changes in generated power on timescales of minutes and hours are compensated by frequency control measures, we report subsecond distribution grid frequency measurements with local non-Gaussian fluctuations which depend on the magnitude of wind power generation in the grid. Motivated by such experimental findings, we simulate the subsecond grid frequency dynamics by perturbing the power grid, as modeled by a network of phase coupled nonlinear oscillators, with synthetically generated wind power feed-in time series. We derive a linear response theory and obtain analytical results for the variance of frequency increment distributions. We find that the variance of short-term fluctuations decays, for large inertia, exponentially with distance to the feed-in node, in agreement with numerical results both for a linear chain of nodes and the German transmission grid topology. In sharp contrast, the kurtosis of frequency increments is numerically found to decay only slowly, not exponentially, in both systems, indicating that the non-Gaussian shape of frequency fluctuations persists over long ranges.