Tdworld 2177 Houserooftopsolar

Fairness in Reactive Power from PV Systems

Aug. 25, 2014
Our Grill the Grid Masters has been a popular feature for our readers. However, we're finding that our readers also have great answers. So we're combining our Grill the Grid Masters and the Solve This! puzzle contest. You are invited to send in technical questions, as before, and readers are invited to give answers. The question considered to be the most interesting to our readers will win a $50 gift card. And the best answer to any question also receives a $50 card.

Q: Traditionally households pay a higher unit price for usage of active power to compensate for the cost of unmetered reactive power. However the power factor (pf) of inverters used in roof top solar systems is set to 1.0 (or very close to 1.0). So users of PV systems produce their own active power and even export the excess to the network and get money for it but they import any needed reactive power for inductive loads (motors etc.) from the network at no cost. This leaves other utility customers to pick up the cost of the reactive power. Is this fair?

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