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Distributed/decentrallized power generation vs. Regional power generation

  1. Mar 20, 2012 #1
    Hello everyone!
    Need help with understanding the terms "distributed/decentralized" vs. "regional power generation".
    1. Is there any difference between the terms "distributed" and "decentralized" generation (of electricity)?
    I thought "distributed" means generation of electricity on units joint in a grid, whereas "decentralized" means generating power on independed small-sized units.

    2. Does the term "Regional power generation" exist at all?

    Thank you
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 20, 2012 #2
    It is my understanding that distributed generation is done on medium/low voltage levels. That is on a line (radial) with loads connected along the line (before and after the generator(s)). This can cause problems with voltage magnitude and protection of lines, among many other problems.

    Regional power generation refers to generation connected (only) to high voltage lines/grid.

    But there may be other definitions that is correct.
  4. Mar 21, 2012 #3
    Thank you.
    I do not know if I'm asking in the correct thread, but my question mostly relates to nuclear generation. There is such a tendency now that small-sized modular units are designed over the world and they are intended to operate either in local grids or individually (e.g. in off-shore oil rigs, or in remote regions whereto fuel is hard to deliver and nuclear generation becomes competitive).

    Please, opinions are welcome!
  5. Mar 21, 2012 #4
    My statement does not differentiate on what type of fuel used in generator.

    I'm not familiar with small nuclear units, except at ships/sub. Although they are not "small" they either.

    But if the transfer capacity of a tie-line between areas limits the loading in one remote area, then installing a generator unit without upgrading the line might be a effective measure (w.r.t. cost, environment e.g.).

    But isn't nuclear waste handling and security very expensive? Thus 1 large station is more effective than 10 small?

    Do you have a reference? Especially for offshore nuclear generation?
  6. Mar 21, 2012 #5
    "Small" is just a term. It's used for reactors below 300 MW.
    Can't say much about off-shore generation. Just know that such possibilities are being studied.
  7. Mar 21, 2012 #6
    http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2011-01/21/deep-sea-fission [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
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