June 2013 Issue
As a result more than 50 million people in the US and Canada lost power in an event with an estimated price tag of around 6 billion US dollars. While the blackout took about an hour to develop, it took a few months to analyze. It was a process that involved many experts, working to get the data from multiple devices and to convert it into a common format that can be processed in order to unders... More


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Industry News


Ten-Year Network Development Plan The TYNDP 2012 identifies the need to invest €104 billion in the refurbishment or construction of roughly 52 300 km of extra high voltage power lines clustered into 100 investment projects across Europe. Eighty % of the identified 100 bottlenecks are related to the direct or indirect integration of renewable energy sources (RES) such as wind and solar p... More

Integrated Digital Substation Solutions from Alstom Grid

Solutions for Power Distribution Alstom Grid launches the perfect package of protection IEDs and multi-function server and gateway solutions to equip distribution substations for optimum performance. Several dedicated building blocks are used to deliver the distribution automation solution, including: NEW: Cost-effective, multi-function system management using the DAPserver P40 Agile feeder... More

ISIO 200

Put your binary I/Os where you need them ISIO 200 is OMICRON’s new binary I/O terminal for Substation Automation Systems (SAS). As a SAS component, the terminal integrates binary signals that are not handled by other SAS devices. It communicates via GOOSE messages in line with IEC 61850, and therefore interoperates with a wide range of devices. In addition, you can use ISIO 200 in comb... More

Reason Launches new IEC 61850 solutions

New Merging Unit and multi-function recorder add a new dimension to power systems monitoring Reason announced two exciting releases for the IEC 61850 environment. The MU320 is a fully IEC 61850-9-2 LE compliant and vendor independent Merging Unit, bridging the gap between the analog and digital world. This comes hand in hand with the latest RPV-311 recorder. With the option of an extra Ethern... More

Schneider Electric Announces upgrade to MiCOM Px30 Protection Relays

Schneider Electric is to provide its proven, well established MiCOM Px30 range of modular protection and control devices with powerful new hardware. The upgrade, which is designed using state of the art processing architectures and real-time operating system, further expands the functional performance with no additional investment. Faster processing and extended memory pave the way for futu... More

SEL High-impedance fault detection

Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. (SEL) announced the release of high-impedance fault detection in the SEL-651R Advanced Recloser Control. SEL’s patented Arc Sense technology (AST) detects more high-impedance faults than conventional protection for reliable operation of your distribution system. A high-impedance fault occurs when a conductor contacts a ground surface but does not p... More


Releases new motor protection relay Siemens is pleased to announce the release of the new 7SR17 Rho, successor of 7SG17 Rho 3 This new device provides comprehensive, configurable motor protection with enhanced functionality and performance. Functionality is accessed via the familiar and consistent 7SR interface. The relay can be applied to 3-phase induction motors of all sizes. It can b... More

Toshiba adds Machine Protection to GRE series

Toshiba announces the launch of GRE170, a numerical multi-function machine protection designed for medium and small capacity generator and motor protection applications. GRE170 completes the range of the low-cost, high-quality and compact GRE-Series multi-function relays for MV protection and control applications. In addition to machine protection GRE170 also features a comprehensive range of... More

Technology News

EyeCkeck 8000

The new smart camera with up to 4 sensor heads The electric power industry has been focused on the issues of cyber security for more than a decade. However, the issues of physical security are very important as well, especially in the case of unmanned substations in remote locations. EyeCheck 8000 is a new smart camera platform with up to 4 sensor heads. The flexible hardware platform of the cam... More

RoboBee Takes Off

Advancement in miniature robotics and power sources The demonstration of the first controlled flight of an insect-sized robot is the culmination of more than a decade's work, led by researchers at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard. The tiny robot flaps its wings with piezoelectric actuators - s... More

Cover Story

Distance Analysis for Power Systems

Digital fault recording equipment is basically applied on the bulk power system for post mortem analysis following the occurrence of system disturbances. In addition, DFR analysis can confirm the operation of the relay elements which activates the tripping of the associated circuit breakers to clear the fault. Accurate RMS measurements as well as a host of software packages can be executed to veri... More

IEC 61850 Update

The semantic data model!

One of the important features of IEC 61850, often underestimated in its value, is the detailed semantic data model defined in part 7-4 with the logical nodes and hundreds of data objects that allow modeling the various application information from substation automation, protection, control and measurement including process equipment. While in a traditional SCADA system, an engineer needs to know w... More

Lessons Learned

Disturbance Analysis in Brazil - Grid Procedures and Infrastructure

Disturbance Recording Architecture: Digital fault recording (DFR) has been established as an essential post-event analysis source of information, particularly after the new regulatory requirements imposed strict economic and legal issues regarding system availability. Concerning digital fault recordings, Brazilian utilities can be divided in two groups - Utilities that base their post-analysis on... More

Blackout Analysis

Arizona - Southern California Outages September 8, 2011

The outages affected parts of Arizona, Southern California (CA), USA, and Baja California, Mexico. All of the San Diego area with nearly one-and-a-half million customers lost power, some for up to 12 hours. The disturbance occurred near rush hour, on a business day, snarling traffic for hours. Schools and businesses closed, some flights and public transportation were disrupted, water and sewage pu... More

Evaluating Faults

Evaluating Faults with CBR - an Expert System

Thanks to Interconeción Eléctrica S.A. E.S.P ISA for sharing their new developments related to SmartGrid In Colombia, the electric power transmission companies have transmission control centers from which they remotely operate all substation equipment. When a fault occurs, transmission control center dispatchers have to analyze power system faults and restore the transmission ne... More

Software Solutions

Data Formats

To better understand the effects of different parameters of the power supplied to sensitive customers it is necessary to provide engineers with the right tools to allow them to establish the correlation between the combination of certain attributes of the power and the failure of equipment (Figure 1). The integration of multifunctional intelligent electronic devices (IEDs) from different manufa... More

Legal Issue

Workers Compensation

As we mentioned earlier, to recover under Workers Compensation, the injury to the employee must both: Occur in the course of AND Arise out of the worker’s employment (Mallor et all., 2008, p. 1253) Further, it has to be noted that the term “in the course of employment” should strictly relate to all circumstances of the sustained injuries and should encompass &lsquo... More

New Protection Relay for Variable Speed

New Trends for Automated Fault and Disturbance Analysis

The complexity of power system operation is increasing and automated analysis contributes to more reliable and faster assessment of disturbances and faults, which is critical for improving power system performance. The requirements of automated analysis systems should consider integration of data from many points in the power system and should call for standardization efforts to reduce the cost of... More

The Guru

Interview with PACWorld guru Andrei Malkov

PAC World: Where were you born? A.M.: I was born in Ivanovo. This is 300 km from Moscow. PAC World: What are your memories from the time of World War II? A.M.: The Second World War deprived me of my childhood as well as many of my friends. I know what starvation and hardships are not from someone else's words. I will never lose my feeling of gratitude to my mother for everything she was doi... More


Protection History - Generations of Protection

Even if mentioned already in an AEG patent from 1925, dry disk rectifiers have been used in protection in 1937 for the first time. Crystal detectors as known from radios have been too sensitive in case of shock. That’s why SSW preferred copper/copper oxygen rectifiers, AEG worked with Selenium rectifiers. FIigure 1 shows an underlayed clapper-type armature relay B37 produced by Reyrolle for ... More

I Think

Do we need super powers to build the grid of the future?

To define the grid of the future, one needs to predict what the future purpose and use of the grid will be. The big question is of course, who can adequately predict the future? So far the use and future of the electricity grid has been rather predictable as the infrastructure itself was (and is...) relatively simple. I may oversimplify things, but in general we generate power at bulk power stati... More

Industry Reports


The report describes errors due to the characteristics of the analog and digital inputs. In addition, the required inputs necessary to effectively capture a power system event will be presented. Examples of records illustrating the types of data displays are provided to help the reader understand the concepts presented. The report does not discuss the deployment of disturbance recorders to meet t... More

PAC conferences around the world

Fourth Conference on Innovative Smart Grid Technologies, 2013

The four keynote addresses covered topics of great importance for our industry and were presented by top government, utility and manufacturing experts: Grid Modernization & Resiliency - Patricia Hoffman, Assistant Secretary U.S. Department of Energy Modernization & Resiliency; Duke Energy’s Grid Modernization Journey-Mark Wyatt, Vice President of Smart Grid & Energy Syst... More

i-PCGRID 2013, San Francisco, CA, USA

The organizers took under consideration that 2013 is a critical year for addressing better system resiliency, exploring Smart Grid deployment programs, and sustainability concerns worldwide. The past few years were an intense learning phase, with some painful lessons learned in the process of transforming pioneering visions into reality. The event workshop format significantly helped in focusi... More

Middle East Electricity, 2013 United Arab Emirates

The motto of the show was “Doing Global Business a Power of Good.” It was held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai. With its 38 year history, Middle East Electricity is not only the longest-running , but also the largest power event in the region. Middle East Electricity 2013 was the most successful in the ... More

PEAC - Power & Energy Automation Conference

The conference program included 2 types of events: paper sessions and fundamentals track. The papers selected by the technical committee were grouped in five half-day sessions: Smart grid Islanding, Disturbance Analysis and Security Substation Automation and Wide Area Monitoring Voltage Control Topics and Distribution Automation Case Studies Case Studies - Substation and Power Statio... More

Texas A&M University Conference for Protective Relay Engineers

The conference was preceded by a day of tutorials. The main one was presented by Pretap Mysore and Ilia Voloh (members of the IEEE PES Power Systems Relaying Committee) and covered the recently revised IEEE C37.99 “Guide for the Protection of Shunt Capacitor Banks.” The tutorial included discussions on types of capacitor units, fused and fuseless, configuration of capacitor banks and... More

Book Review

Signal Processing of Power Quality Disturbances

Book Review by Alexander Apostolov, USA The analysis of different power systems events can be seen as different things by experts in different domains. To the protection engineer a single-phase-to-ground short circuit fault cleared by the protection device and then followed by automatic reclosing is a sequence of events related to correct or incorrect protection operation. However, to a powe... More


Fault analysis through the eyes of an Umpire

by Satendra Bhola , Transend Networks Pty Ltd, Australia Power system fault analysis is Satendra Bhola’s passion and that is what keeps him going all year round at Transend Networks, a utility which owns and operates electricity transmission network in Tasmania, Australia. However, every year during the last two weeks in January, Satendra focuses on a different type of fault … a li... More

Final Thoughts
After discussing different aspects of disturbance analysis we can think of some ideas that can help us to faster improve the efficiency of the process. The first thing that we need to do is to try to minimize or eliminate the involvement of protection engineers in some of the tasks that can be automated. First of all, it is clear that we need to develop as quickly as possible the common XML based... More

Let?s start with organization in protection testing