Low Voltage (LV) networks are increasingly required to cope with challenges they were not designed for, requiring for more active network management (ANM). Crucially, ANM solutions require the availability of accurate network information. In practice, available data on LV networks can be incomplete, a problem often overlooked in prior ANM research. For example, in the U.K. and many developed countries, the lifetime of distribution networks assets spans several decades, with some of the available asset data gathered and maintained over many years. This can often lead to incomplete cable data being available to network operators. To overcome this, we propose a novel machine learning technique to autonomously approximate the missing cable information in LV networks. Our proposed algorithm uses a tree-based search methodology, which approximates the missing cable's cross section area (XSA) data based on rules engineers used when designing the LV networks. We validate our approach using a large database of real LV networks, where some of the cables' XSA are treated as unknown and used as ground truth to evaluate the accuracy of the predictions. Moreover, we propose a mechanism that scores the confidence level of the prediction, information which is then presented to the human network planners.

IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid
Intelligent and autonomous systems

Mokhtar, M., Robu, V., Flynn, D., Higgins, C., Whyte, J., Loughran, C., & Fulton, F. (2020). Automating the Verification of the Low Voltage Network Cables and Topologies. IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid, 11(2), 1657–1666. doi:10.1109/TSG.2019.2941722