course: Dynamic Processes in Electric Power Distribution Systems

teaching methods:
lecture with tutorials
computer based presentation, black board and chalk
responsible person:
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Constantinos Sourkounis
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Eckhard Grebe (extern)
offered in:


Die Angaben zu den Prüfungsmodalitäten (im WiSe 2020/2021 | SoSe 2021) erfolgen vorbehaltlich der aktuellen Situation. Notwendige Änderungen aufgrund universitärer Vorgaben werden zeitnah bekanntgegeben.

Date according to prior agreement with lecturer.

Form of exam:oral
Registration for exam:FlexNow


The students gain knowledge on the properties and the modeling of large electrical interconnected systems, active and reactive power reserves, as well as the influence of regenerative generation. Dynamic processes in large electrical interconnected systems, which are decisive for their safety, are understood by the students. They learn the technical / physical processes that can lead to a large-scale blackout. Furthermore, they master the handling of procedures for evaluating the stability and safety of electrical interconnected systems and thus solving complex problems and determining and avoiding future problems.


Electric power distribution systems represent the largest man-made technical systems. Their technical challenges are determined by transnational physical interconnections. In addition, a characteristic of electric energy is that it cannot be stored in sufficient quantities. This resumes to that the exact quantity of electric energy has be generated which is to be consumed in each moment. The example of the European composite system describes the physical effects that lead to dynamic compensation processes for frequency and voltage at different points in the network. The lecture describes power plants, grid and consumers as control systems and shows how they can be modeled and simulated dynamically. The need for seconds and minutes reserve in case of large sudden power failures, the reactive power budget, the static stability of standard operation and important transients in network faults are discussed. The lecture gives information about grid demands resulting from power generating units, the so called “transmission code” and discusses the influence of increasing regenerative generation on future demands from the electrical power distribution system. Both standard operation as well as critical and interrupted operating states are described. Based on these analyses, the reason and progression of blackouts – how they happened in Italy some years ago and more frequently in the United States – are discussed.



recommended knowledge

  • Basic knowledge of power engineering and control technology
  • Calculation of Electric Power Distribution Networks


  1. Kundur, Prabha "Power System Stability and Control", McGraw-Hill Professional, 1994


During the oral examination, in addition to the questionnaires (DVEV questions), the discussion of blackout scenarios based on measured time characteristics (submitted to the student by the examiner) can play a role.