Research Projects and Publications

An analysis of potential connection points for Hvalárvirkjun in the Westfjords

Power Systems and Smart Grids

Author: Kieran Stewart Read

Year: 2019

Supervisors: Ragnar Kristjánsson, Samuel Perkin, Arndís Magnúsdóttir


An investigation into the improvement of the Westfjords' power system was completed. There are plans to build a new hydropower plant, Hvalárvirkjun, in the Westfjords of Iceland which could provide the region with more reliability, as well as increase the potential load that the West Fjords' power system can handle. In partnership with both Landsnet and Verkis, this thesis demonstrates the use of multiple industry-accepted tests to determine a suitable connection point for Hvalárvirkjun. To determine the best possible connection point, tests based on voltage profile, line loading, reliability, and cost were performed. First, a steady state power flow analysis was completed to determine both line loading and the voltage levels at each bus for each option. Furthermore, a N-1 contingency analysis combined with a probabilistic reliability assessment was used to determine the reliability of each option. Finally, a project cost and social cost was determined to help evaluate the potential for each connection point. The original system was also analyzed and presented for a comparison point. Combining the results from all of the tests, a final recommendation was made which includes three of the ten different options, where two recommendations show a 66 kV connection directly to Ísafjörður in the northern ring and the other advises a 132 kV connection to Mjólká. Future recommendations include the use of this thesis structure in order to expand on the reliability and cost functions and provide a more exhaustive study of the three connection points. 

Link to Publication