Enhancement of inter-area oscillation damping by wide-area controlled hydropower plants

Daniel Fank*, Herwig Renner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper examines how the combined use of hydro governors and a wide-area damping controller (WADC) can improve the damping of inter-area oscillations in power systems. Such oscillations can endanger the stability of power grids, thus damping them is a high priority for transmission system operators (TSO). To ensure that low-frequency oscillations decay as fast as possible, a modal linear quadratic Gaussian (LQG) is proposed as a wide-area controller approach. Using the 10-machine New England Test System, the combined application of the WADC in hydropower plants via generator excitation as well as via the hydro governor is examined for their effectiveness in terms of damping capability. In order to minimize the number of essential PMUs in power systems for the model-based WADC, the residue-based input/output signal selection method is applied. To increase the robustness against large disturbance faults, the generator voltage as additional signal is utilized for the WADC. For controller performance and robustness, the verification has been done under various operating points, tie-line failures as well as different PMU delays. The successful damping of the inter-area oscillation by means of wide-area controlled hydropower plants has been also demonstrated through a nonlinear time domain simulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)762-774
Number of pages13
JournalIET Generation, Transmission and Distribution
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • hydro governor damping
  • inter-area oscillations
  • modal LQG control
  • wide-area damping controller

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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