Optimizing Power-Frequency Droop Characteristics of Distributed Energy Resources

Swaroop S. Guggilam, Changhong Zhao, Emiliano Dall Anese, Yu Christine Chen, Sairaj V. Dhople

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This paper outlines a procedure to design power-frequency droop slopes for distributed energy resources (DERs) installed in distribution networks to optimally participate in primary frequency response. In particular, the droop slopes are engineered such that DERs respond in proportion to their power ratings and they are not unfairly penalized in power provisioning based on their location in the distribution network. The main contribution of our approach is that a guaranteed level of frequency regulation can be obtained at the feeder head, while ensuring that the outputs of individual DERs conform to some well-defined notion of fairness. The approach we adopt leverages an optimization-based perspective and suitable linearizations of the power-flow equations to embed notions of fairness and information regarding the physics of the power flows within the distribution network into the droop slopes. Time-domain simulations from a differential algebraic equation model of the 39-bus New England test-case system augmented with three instances of the IEEE 37-node distribution network with frequency-sensitive DERs are provided to validate our approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3076-3086
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Power Systems
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2018


  • Distributed energy resources
  • droop control
  • primary frequency response

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