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A practical approach to optimising distribution transformer tap settings


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Paoli, J, Brinkmann, B and Negnevitsky, M ORCID: 0000-0002-5130-419X 2020 , 'A practical approach to optimising distribution transformer tap settings' , Energies, vol. 13, no. 18 , pp. 1-16 , doi: 10.3390/en13184889.

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This paper proposes a method of determining the optimal tap settings for no-load distribution transformers with tap-changing capabilities that is practical to apply in real distribution networks. The risk of low voltage distribution networks violating voltage constraints is impacted by the increasing uptake of distributed energy resources and embedded generation. Some of this risk can be alleviated by suitably setting no-load transformer tap settings, however, modifying these taps requires customer outages and must be infrequent. Hence, loading over the entire year must be considered to account for seasonal variations when setting these taps optimally. These settings are determined using evolution strategy optimisation based on an average loading case. Monte Carlo simulations are used to calculate the probability that the terminal voltages on the distribution transformer secondary terminals violate the network voltage limits when the optimal set of taps for the average case is applied over a whole year. This algorithm was tested on several cases of a real distribution feeder of varying complexity, and produces a sufficiently-optimal set of taps without significant computation time.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Paoli, J and Brinkmann, B and Negnevitsky, M
Keywords: no-load tap-changing transformers, optimisation, evolution strategy, distribution network utilisation, network planning
Journal or Publication Title: Energies
Publisher: MDPIAG
ISSN: 1996-1073
DOI / ID Number: 10.3390/en13184889
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (

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