September 2012 Issue
Like everything else, finding the location of a fault has changed over time with the changes in technology. In the world of electromechanical and solid state relays we did not have any accurate indication about where the fault might be. The closest we can get is based on the knowledge of which protection element operated. For example, if we have operation of the Zone 1 distance at one end of... More


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Industry News

DS Agile from Alstom

Alstom Grid launches its DS Agile Digital Control System DS Agile, Alstom Grid's latest end-to-end automation solution for Digital Substations, combines cutting-edge hardware, software, communications and the highest technology engineering.  DS Agile ensures enhanced substation situational awareness:  high reliability, security and interoperability through IEC 61850 Ethernet network arch... More

IEEE Medal of Honor

Edmund O. Schweitzer III received the prestigious 2012 IEEE Medal in Power Engineering on Saturday, June 30, 2012, during an award ceremony held in Boston, MA, honoring 26 top technologists. IEEE is the world's largest technical professional association. The Medal in Power Engineering, sponsored by the IEEE Industry Applications, Industrial Electronics, Power Electronics, and Power & Ener... More

New Fellows

Four members of the PAC community are in the 2012 Class of Newly Elevated Fellows Christoph Brunner (Switzerland) for development of global standards  for substation automation and smart grids   Erich W. Gunther (USA) for contributions to the development and standardization of techniques for electric power quality Farnoosh Rahmatian (Canada) for contributions to optical voltage and curr... More

New SEL synchroWAVe

Synchrophasor Visualization Software The new SEL synchroWAVe software user interface (UI) enhancements make it easier to view and find information. Alarms alert users of predefined system conditions, and phasor plots make it easier to see angle differences between several phasor measurement units (PMUs) Also, a powerful search function increases the speed of finding system conditions ... More

Next generation protection & control for transmission lines

TOSHIBA announces GR-200 Series Line Protection IEDs Toshiba announces the launch of transmission line protection and control IEDs based on its next generation GR-200 Series IED platform. GRZ200 provides distance protection and control applications for feeders in all types of network. GRL200 provides line differential protection as well as distance protection and control functions. I... More

Test Data Management

 OMICRON offers new NERC PRC-005 compliant database solution ADMO is a new easy-to-use database software for central planning and management of the maintenance activities for protection systems. The following components can be managed: Protective relays    Communication systems    Control circuitry Instrument transformers    Circuit breakers     Station DC supply... More

Technology News

GPS Spoofing - a satellite pretender

The increased reliance of many everyday activities on GPS technology, and recently the increased use of drones for military and other purposes, are raising the issue of the reliability and accuracy of the GPS signals. This is not only valid for civilian applications, but now more and more for the electric power industry as well. The requirements for accurate time synchronization by Phasor Me... More

Solar Site Controller -solutions for centralized management

Integration of renewable energy resources with the electric power grid is one of the challenges that the protection, automation and control industry faces today.  The Solar Ware® Main Site Controller (MSC) provides centralized management of Utility-Scale Photovoltaic Installations offers the industry a very advanced grid management. The MSC provides overall coordination and control of the ... More

Cover Story

Determining Fault Location on Transmission and Distribution Lines

The IEEE PES Power System Relay Committee Working Group D26 is currently revising the IEEE C37.114 Guide to Fault Locating on AC Transmission and Distribution Lines to include new developments in fault locating techniques and methods.  Development of the guide started in 1997 under the direction of Karl Zimmerman and Damir Novosel and was completed in 2004.  A new working group ... More

IEC 61850 Update

Towards machine readable IEC 61850 models

With the expansion of the scope of IEC 61850 beyond the substation, the number of logical nodes and data objects has significantly grown over the last years. In the meantime, specifications for logical nodes and common data classes are spread in various standard documents produced by different working groups. To keep all the definitions together in one place, IEC TC57 / WG10 has worked alre... More

Lessons Learned

Fault Location in an Electrical Energy Distribution Infrastructure with a Wireless Sensor Network

Nowadays, the electrical energy distribution is considered a critical infrastructure in industrially developed societies and its protection regarding safety and security threats is being more and more used. The fact that this infrastructure is geographically spread across huge areas brings difficult technological challenges for the real-time prevention, detection and precise localization o... More

Challenges & Solutions

Fault Location & System Restoration

Emergency measures invoked to guard against the possible effects of a second or third fault in the same vicinity can be expensive.  There is a prime economic driver to quickly isolate the faulted section, undertake repairs and return a network to normal operational status in the shortest possible time. There is probably a greater need for fast and accurate fault location on sub transmissi... More


Traveling Waves - Reliability in Fault Location

Considering this, fault location on long lines, sometimes with series compensation, is becoming more important to restore the transmission availability to the system. The Takagi fault location algorithm for one line end is the most common used today to inform where a fault is in a line, but relies on some mathematical simplifications that are not valid in all situations like non-transposed... More

Legal Issue

Discrimination on Disability

While every country addresses this issue differently, we will have a look at the way it is handled in the U.S. By passing Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), The U.S. Congress expanded the protection beyond just federal contractors, thus addressing comprehensively the problem of discrimination based on disability. The procedures for handling an ADA case and the avail... More

New Method

A New Fault Location Method

Algorithms for accurate location of faults on power lines have been a subject of great interest of researchers since the power system reliability became an important factor for network operators and customers. Accurate location is especially of utmost importance for series-compensated lines, which are spreading over few hundreds of kilometers and are vital links between the energy productio... More

The Guru

Interview with guru Demosthenes de Souza Paixao

PAC World:  Where were you born and where did you grow up? D.dS.P.: Besides coming from a family who lived in Quissama (in the North), I was born  in Rio de Janeiro, the city that my father chose to work in. I lived in the same house in the Inhauma neighborhood from my birth to my marriage in 1963. PAC World:  Is there someone in your family that influenced your decision to become an el... More


History Protection - Generations of Protection

Direct Axis Current Comparison Protection Differential Protection was covered in the 2008’s summer and autumn editions (Merz and Price and others). Additionally,  we will describe mechanical solutions now. Reyrolle started with line protection series SOLKOR (= “solid cores”) in 1904. First SOLKOR relays have been line differential relays. Three currents have been conn... More

I Think

Do we have a conscience?

During some of the discussions I had with colleagues I noticed that some things are still not the way I think they should be. We are in the middle of a process that is supposed to change the world for the better. After decades of senseless destruction of our planet and its resources, slowly but steadily the notion that we need to stop this, is rising. There is an increased awareness of en... More

Industry Reports

IEEE Panel Discussion

Building the Technical Workforce for Our Energy Future Celebration and Kickoff of the PES Scholarship Plus Initiative   The video from the panel discussion on "Building the Technical Workforce for Our Energy Future" is now available via To make it more manageable to view the event, the discussion has been split into 5 video segments. Patricia Hoffman, ... More

Toward a Systematic Framework

Deploying Synchrophasors for Improving Performance of Future Electric Systems  PSERC Publication 12-18/ May 2012 This report is motivated by the major opportunities offered by the deployment of near-real time synchrophasor measurements. For the first time it has become possible to consider wide-area synchronized sensing, communications and use for automated control and protection. These op... More

Conference Reports

Georgia Tech 2012, Protective Relaying Conference

The 66th GeorgiaTech Protective Relaying Conference was held 25-27 April, 2012, at the Georgia Tech Hotel, Atlanta, USA. This specialized annual protection and control conference brings together every spring protection and control specialist from suppliers, consultants and a small number of academics, with the largest number of participants  from utilities in the Southeast of the coun... More

IEEE PES 2012 General Meeting

San Diego, USA The event was held 22-26 July at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego, California, USA. The 2012 Power & Energy Society GM is a gathering of thousands of electric  power systems professionals from all corners of the world that come together to discuss the issues that our industry needs to address under the very appropriate motto “New energy horizons - opportunities... More

IEEE Transmission and Distribution Conference and Exposition

The Event was held at the Orlando, FL, Convention Center. This is one of the largest events in the world that brings together specialists from many different industries that supply electric power transmission and distribution companies around the world. The technical program is filled with different types of events that make it challenging for the participants to make a decision of what to... More

PAC World Conference, 2012

The third annual PAC World conference was held in Budapest, Hungary from 25 to 28 June 2012. After the success of the first two PAC World conferences in Dublin, Ireland, the third conference was held for the first time in a different country - in the beautiful capital of Hungary. The idea behind it was to get closer to members of our community from Central and Eastern Europe, while at the ... More

Book Review

Data and Computer Communications

Second Edition Reviewed by Alexander Apostolov, USA Writing a book about the engineering analysis and design of electric transmission systems is a challenging task, especially today, when the system is becoming different from what it was in the last century. At the same time the author needs to be very careful in focusing the presented material to a specific group of readers that c... More


Wood Working

by Paul Myrda, EPRI, USA For as long as I can remember I was always building something in my Dad’s basement workshop.  Actually, I think I spent more time taking things apart than building, but that is a story for another day.  In 1960, when I was five years old my mother’s Uncle John passed away. He was a luthier by trade and had his own store front shop in Chicago ... More

Final Thoughts
Fault Reporting for a Smart Grid Calculating the location of the fault is just a first step in the process of fault analysis. The articles in this issue of the magazine discuss in great detail how we can determine the location of a short circuit fault on a transmission line or distribution feeder using many different methods: Impedance based single and multi-ended Travelling waves based... More

Protecting your electrical assets? today and tomorrow