Recently, the demand for electrical energy has increased more than energy production due to the growing population and industrialization. Therefore, the distributed generators integration (DGs) into the distribution system has been widely adopted. This work examines the effect of photovoltaic-based distributed generator (PV-DG) integration on power quality effect of a radial distribution system. Firstly, the capacity and optimum placement of the PV-DG units in the distribution network are determined by employing the particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm. Then, the impact of PV-DG integration on voltage harmonic distortion is analyzed by performing harmonic load flow analysis. Also, the P-V curve method is used to evaluate the effects of higher PV-DG penetration levels on loading margin and voltage magnitude. The simulation results show that as the PV-DG units’ penetration level increases, a greater level of harmonic distortion is injected, implying that the PV-DG units should only be integrated up to the network’s maximum capacity. Therefore, high harmonic distortion is produced when the PV-DG units are penetrated beyond this maximum penetration level, which has a negative impact on the system’s performance. The total voltage harmonic distortion is 4.17 % and 4.24 % at PCC1 and PCC2 at the highest penetration level, allowing the acceptable harmonic distortion limit. Also, grid-connected PV-DG units improve loading margin and voltage magnitude, according to the P-V curve results. The standard IEEE-33 bus distribution system is modelled in ETAP software and is used as a test system for this study.
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