September 2018 Issue
If we ask many people about their opinion regarding digital substations and what they are doing about it, we are going to get many different answers. The differences depend on multiple factors, such as: What do they understand a digital substation to be? How comfortable they are with trying something new? How well do they understand the benefits of digital substations in comparison with... More


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Industry News

EFACEC - SYSTEM POINT Substation System Management

Efacec has released a new version of SYSTEM POINT. It is a server-based software platform that brings unified systems and data management across the utility infrastructure, enabling end-users to manage their substation automation assets effortlessly, while remaining focused on grid and grid asset operation. Developed specifically for the substation, the system management software from Eface... More

IEEE Communications Society - ComSoc

For the more than ten years of the PAC World magazine's existence we have covered industry news related to the PAC industry, as well as industry organizations such as the IEEE Power and Energy Society. However, with the digitalization of the electric power grid communications become a key component of PAC systems, so even that we already have a Communications & Cyber Security Committee w... More

OMICRON electronics

CT Analyzer: current transformer testing better than ever OMICRON’s CT Analyzer was the first device to facilitate effective on-site tests on current transformers (CTs). It is still the only device to allow comprehensive CT tests with accurate results operating at safe 120 V. In addition, it weighs only 17lbs (8 kg). Once again reworked, it now features higher sensitivity, a ... More

Philip Winston

New IEEE Fellow Philip Winston was elevated to IEEE Fellow in 2018 “for development of standards in power system protection reliability.” He graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Clemson University in 1972 and with a Master’s degree from Georgia Institute of Technology in 1983. He has worked at Southern Company /Georgia Power Com... More


A new RELY-PCIe board supports off-load processing for Sampled Measured Values (SMV) RELY-SMV-PCIe board embeds a powerful reconfigurable platform (CPU+FPGA) which allows autonomous computation of SMV streams received according to IEC 61850-9-2. This card offers the extraction of the Current and Voltage values from the subscribed SMV messages and additional computations like RMS calculatio... More

Sherman Chan - New IEEE Fellow

Dr. Sherman M. Chan was elevated to IEEE Fellow in 2018 “for contributions to power system modeling and analysis tools for protective relaying.” He was born in mainland China in 1953.  He came to the US when he was 13He received his BS degree in 1976 from Harvey Mudd College and his PhD degree from M.I.T. (on a Hertz Foundation Fellowship), both in engineering. Dr. Chan w... More

SoC-e TSN IP Core - Supports EtherCAT Profile

SoC-e MTSN Switch IP Core’s release 18.10 supports EtherCAT TSN Communication profile to allow seamless integration of EtherCAT devices with TSN Networks. This IP can be implemented on reconfigurable devices (FPGAs/SoCs) to build TSN-capable equipment. SoC-e has developed this feature in collaboration with EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) and it was presented in real-demo at the l... More


Detecting Format Errors in COMTRADE Records COMTRADE files are essential for maintaining grid reliability and sustaining grid resilience. Format errors in these files can render them unreadable. At Softstuf we understand how difficult it can be to find these errors, so we built COMTRADE Conformity Check (CCC) to quickly detect them. CCC is a compact standalone non-intrusive application.... More

Testing traveling wave protection with the RTDSĀ® Simulator

New IEEE Fellow Dr. Eugeniusz Rosolowski was elevated to IEEE Fellow “for contributions to education in power system modeling and protection.” He earned the MS in Electrical Engineering from the Wroclaw University of Technology, Poland in 1972 and Ph.D. degree from the Kiev Politechnical Institute (KPI), Ukraine in 1978. He has been with the electrical engineering ... More

Cover Story

FITNESS - Paving the way forward for GB's digital substation journey

FITNESS demonstrates digital substation technology with a combination of non-conventional instrument transformers (NCITs), associated merging units (MUs) and standalone merging units (SAMU) publishing sampled value streams to the process bus for protection and control IEDs based on the IEC 61850 edition 2 standard. The project aims to demonstrate that the designed ar... More

IEC 61850 Update

Quality Bits - Clarifications with Edition 2.1

Based on some recent discussions, I realized that apparently, there is still some confusion related to some basic concepts of IEC 61850. Those should be clarified with Edition 2.1 of the core parts of IEC 61850. First, it should be noted that there were some reallocations of specifications between IEC 61850-7-2 and -7-3. With the rearrangement, all types of the definitions are now in part ... More

Lessons Learned

Experience from Statnett R&D Digital Substation Project

Traditional philosophy for transmission systems where protection and control functions are divided in separate hardware units was challenged by a more compact hardware design. The Digital Substation pilot includes protection and control functions for two 300 kV transmission lines in the same IED hardware (hereafter named Protection and Control Unit - PCU). The objective of this compa... More

PSRC Update

First Digital Substation ? A journey, business case, lessons

IEC 61850 has now been accepted 'almost unequivocally' as the preferred standard for substation communications. Utilities and industries across the world are at various stages of adoption of this standard. The extent of utilization of this standard in the majority of installations around the world is at ‘station bus’ level with IEC 61850-8-1 reporting and GOOSE. Moving further al... More

System-based Testing

"Postes Intelligents" Design, Test and Commissioning of Rte's first completely Digital Substation

Rte's “Postes Intelligents” project (Smart substation in French) consists of the refurbishment of two substations (Blocaux 225 kV / 90 kV and Alleux 90 kV, see page 46) and the upgrading of other substations, located in the same area in northern France. This area features a large amount of wind generation prone to occasional transmission line congestions. It is worth exploring w... More

Legal Issue

Bullying - No longer just limited to the classroom, it may even land you in court!

Bullying is generally defined as unwanted, aggressive behavior which involves a real, or perceived power imbalance. Traditionally, and most commonly, bullying is associated with such interaction among school aged children. Typically, such behavior manifests itself when the perpetrator abuses his or her power, which may be in the form of physical strength, access to embarrassing information or... More


Testing Automation and Control

IEC 61850 was published as an international standard in the early 2000s and is the established norm for substation automation projects (SAS). Edition 2 and the upcoming amendment 2.1 increases the acceptance worldwide. Since protection is available, there is a recognized need for testing. Protection devices are tested regularly and demonstrate functionality as well as parameter set. There are... More

The Guru

Interview with PACWorld Guru Dr. He Jiali

Interview with PACWorld guru Dr. He Jiali from China PAC World:  When and where were you born? H.J.: I was born in June 1925, Xian, China. PAC World:  Where did you grow up and where did you go to school? H.J.: I grew up in Shaanxi province, China. I went to middle school in Shaanxi and joined Peiyang University in Tianjin, China. PAC World:  Did you have any specifi... More


Protection History

To make mounting onsite easy and because of standardization and unification of assets, sheets have been produced. One example is this produced by A.-G. Brown, Boveri & Cie in 1930 (Figure 1). All apparatus of a line feeder are fixed there. The connection cables are mounted and connected to the plugs. Only the connections to measurement transformers and tripping the circuit breaker must be... More

I Think

We have to take a better care of our Planet

After traveling in Asia for two weeks on my way home I was facing a twelve-hour delay in one of Europe’s major airports as I missed my connection due to a delay at the departure airport. This was one of those occasions that allowed me to think about my experiences in the world around us. I just enjoyed a spectacular trip with new inspiring experiences and the delay on my return back ... More

Conference Reports

72ndĀ Georgia Tech Protective Relay Conference (GT PRC)

The Conference was held at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center, Atlanta, USA. The two and a half days’ program included papers selected by the technical committee and presented mostly in parallel sessions. The focus of the conference is a wide range of topics related to the application of advanced protection and control technology in transmission and distribution systems, i... More

9th Protection Automation and Control World (PACWorld) Conference, Sofia, Bulgaria

The 9th PACWorld Conference was held 26 - 28 June 2018 at the Grand Hotel Sofia, Sofia, Bulgaria. This was the first conference that was held in the Balkan peninsula during the final days of the six-month period during which Bulgaria was the President of the European Union. The conference was preceded on Monday by a half-day tutorial on "Developments and Applications of IEC-61850" prese... More

Georgia Tech Fault & Disturbance Analysis Conference (GT FDAC)

The event was held 30 April-1 May 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. The 21st Annual Georgia Tech Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference was held at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center, Atlanta, USA. The conference is jointly organized by The Transient Recorder Users Council and Georgia Tech. The two days’ conference program included papers selected by the technical committ... More

IEEE PES General Meeting, Portland, OR, USA

The IEEE PES held its 2018 General Meeting August 5-9 2018 in Portland, OR USA. The theme of the technical program was “Re-Imaging the Electric Grid” which provided a platform for presentations and discussions of new and innovative ideas in an effort to find answers to many of the issues and challenges facing the electric power industry today. The event was organized by L... More

Book Review

Communication Networks for Smart Grids

Making Smart Grid Real (Computer Communications and Networks) The electric power industry is in a period of transition from the hardwired grid of the last century towards the computers and communications based Smart Grid of the 21st century. However, many utilities do not have the communication networks that are required for the implementation of Smart Grid technologies. The applic... More


Archery - Sport, Zen Art, Meditation...

by Daniel Wiesner, OMICRON electronics GmbH, Austria You raise your bow, nock the arrow and start aiming for the target. It is a moment of concentration and harmony until you open your hand and the arrow starts flying into the direction of the target... this is my favorite hobby. Imagine you are in a beautiful forest somewhere in the Austrian alps, equipped with a wooden bow, a few arr... More

Final Thoughts
This is a question that many people in the electric power industry are asking themselves. Digitalization is the use of digital technologies to change a business model and provide new revenue and value-producing opportunities; If we just think about this definition, it is clear that the answer should be Yes. Why would anybody miss an opportunity to get new revenue and produce value? From man... More

Let?s start with organization in protection testing