Power System in Madeira & Porto Santo

madeira porto santo map power system

A Brief Overview of the Power System in Madeira and how to achieve 50% Renewable Penetration Level

The power system in Madeira is operated by EEM (Empresa de Electricidade da Madeira) and includes a 60kV and 30kV network. Installed capacity is around 290 MW with a peak demand of around 150 MW. The power system of Madeira is not connected to the mainland.

Renewable Energy produces currently around 31 % (see Figure above) of the island consumption.

It is Madeira’s target is to increase the renewable energy share of the production to 50% by 2022. This will be achieved by adding the Calheta III pump storage system (to be finished in 2020) and additional wind (around 25MW) and PV (around 60 MW) power plants. The new pump storage system was designed for variable frequency pumping and synchronous compensation operation.

In addition, to facilitate the integration of more renewable generation in Madeira, the Island grid code was updated, existing hydro power stations have been refurbished to provide more flexible operation and pilot projects including storage and electric cars (feasible for Vehicle to grid operation) have been started up.

The most important step towards archiving 50% renewable penetration level is the new hydroelectric power system Calheta, see the map below:


map hydroelectric power system calheta

It will have four operation modes:

  •  Production;
  •  Pumping;
  •  Synchronous compensation;
  •  Pumping & Synchronous compensation.

It will allow a significant increase of VRE and reduce VRE curtailment.

The details of the design of the Calheta hydro system, its impact on the power system operation and first operational experience will be discussed in detailed during the workshop.

In addition, a study trip to the hydro power station might be added to the workshop.

Electric Grid of Porto Santo Island

porto santo map electric system

Renewable Energy produces currently 15,2 %  of the island consumption.

Safety Issues

  • For safety reasons the system is operated with at least 2 diesel generators, even when the capacity of a single generator would be enough, in order to prevent a blackout in case of failure in one generator. This means that the operation is far way from an efficient optimization.
  • For the photovoltaic park (only the bigger one of 2 MW) operation it’s considered a limitation for increasing power 20% Power/minute, and in some cases a manual limitation by set point (Dispatch Center).
  • For the wind farm it’s considered the use of set points to limit power.

Short term plan

1: Battery Power Plant installation

Nominal Power: 4 MW
Capacity: 3 MWh
Main goals:

  • To substitute a diesel generator (all the time). The working mode will be mainly voltage source, in order to contribute to safety operation and the goals listed bellow
  • To contribute to the renewable integration
  • To improve the efficiency of diesel generators (load increase of generator and smoothing changes due the battery action)
  • Reduce costs with fóssil fuels

2: Increase the installed power of wind generation

Capacity: ≈ 1 MW extra (to confirm)