Validating the OPA cascading blackout model on a 19402 bus transmission network with both mesh and tree structures

AbstractThe OPA model calculates the long-term risk of cascading blackouts by simulating cascading outages and the slow process of network upgrade in response to blackouts. We validate OPA on a detailed 19402 bus network model of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC) interconnection with publicly available data. To do this, we examine scalings on a series of WECC interconnection models with increasing detail. The most detailed, 19402 bus network has more tree structures at the edges of the main mesh structure, and we extend the OPA model to account for this. The higher-risk cascading outages are the large cascades that extend across interconnections, so validating cascading models on large networks is crucial to understanding how the real grid behaves. Finally, exploring networks with mixed mesh and tree like structure has implications for the risk analysis for both the transmission grid and other network infrastructures.

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