June 2010 Issue
Even with the introduction of microprocessor based protection devices this did not change a lot. It is true that now we do not need interposing transformers to compensate for the connection of the transformer or the CT ratio and to provide a zero sequence trap. But this is more or less where the innovation stopped. This is probably due to the same old fact - we keep doing things the way we have al... More


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Industry News

AREVA T&D Dynamic Line Rating Protection

AREVA T&D announces the launch of the world’s first protection device with Dynamic Line Rating.  Embedded within MiCOM P341 Interconnection protection, this innovative new feature allows the thermal rating of lines to be dynamically monitored according to weather conditions, such as ambient temperature, wind direction and speed. Ideally suited to Wind farms, where renewable ene... More

GE's MultiLink Family of Hardened Ethernet Switches

Compact, Rugged & Reliable Ethernet Communications The MultiLink ML1200 & ML800 are the newest additions to the MultiLink series of industrially hardened Ethernet Switches.  MultiLink Managed Ethernet Switches provide extremely reliable networking with very fast reconfiguration times for recovering from faults occurring in the network. The complete set of network management functions a... More

New Book Describes Challenges & Opportunities for Today's Power Systems

A new book from SEL, Modern Solutions for Protection, Control, and Monitoring of Electric Power Systems, describes approaches, new technologies, and examples for power system engineers and decision-making personnel, as well as for university students and faculty. Edited by Héctor J. Altuve Ferrer and Edmund O. Schweitzer, III, the book combines the expertise of 15 SEL engineers. Mod... More

New! Test Universe v2.40 release from OMICRON electronics

OMICRON Test Universe is a powerful and flexible test software suite. The new release of the Test Universe Supports: The new CMC 353 CMC 850 test sets Windows 7 (32 & 64 bit) The software Includes a brand new Overcurrent Test module that supports: Any number of overcurrent element types plus directional Flexible test definitions and correct... More

NovaTech - Bitronics M350 family of 3-phase voltmeters & ammeters

NovaTech announces the availability of the Bitronics M350 family of 3-phase voltmeters and ammeters.  The M350 is the second family in the new 50 Series Meters.  Like the M650, the M350 features standard Ethernet Service port with web browser interface, serial and TCP/IP Modbus and DNP3 protocol availability, and easy set-up and use. Additionally, it offers an outstanding LED displa... More

PCS Series Protection & control from NR

NR has released true innovative PCS series protection & control devices addressing fast and reliable protection and automation for modern digital substations and power plants. It features an extensive functional library, programmable logic and configurable I/O. Hosted on a multi-processor platform, two independent data acquisition paths implement two-out -of- two logic to prevent any mal-o... More

Toshiba's GSC1000

Substation Automation System with Redundant Configuration Toshiba’s GSC1000 Substation Automation System, based on the IEC 61850 standard, now supports optional redundant configurations. The figure shows an example system in which each bay is now served using a two-port BCU and protection relays connected to alternate Ethernet Local Area Networks (LAN). The two ports for each ... More

Use GOOSE and RelionĀ® products for simplicity & reliability

Being designed for IEC 61850 standard, the Relion® protection and control products from ABB offer the full benefits of GOOSE messaging. Using GOOSE dramatically reduces the hardwiring, which helps to reduce costs. Additionally, due to its vast signal transfer capacity over Ethernet and significantly faster signaling response times from device to device, GOOSE services together... More

Vegetation-Related Transmission Outages

The NERC Board of Trustees Compliance Committee has reviewed and accepted the Vegetation-Related Transmission Outage Fourth Quarter 2009 Report. Vegetation-related transmission outages that occurred in the fourth quarter of 2009 are being reported in accordance with standard FAC-003-1. The standard requires each outage to be categorized as one of the following:  C... More

Technology News

4G - next generation telecommunications

The requirements for improvements in the performance of protection, automation and control (PAC) systems in a smart grid require the use of communications to meet them. Wireless communications technologies, smart mobile devices and cloud computing can revolutionize future PAC implementations. 1G (standing for first generation) was a name used in the 1980s for the first wireless networks. The... More

HTS - High Temperature Superconductor

American Superconductor Corporation (AMSC) was selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to serve as prime contractor for a High Temperature Superconductor (HTS) power transmission cable project in the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) transmission grid. The project is a Superconductivity Partnership Initiative between the United States Department of Energy (DOE) and industry to develo... More

Memristor - the missing element

Memristive devices could change the standard paradigm of computing by enabling calculations to be performed in the chips where data is stored rather than in a specialized central processing unit. ” R. Stanley Williams, senior fellow and director, Information and Quantum Systems Lab, HP On 8 April 2010 HP announced advancements in research from HP Labs – the company’s centr... More

Cover Story

PAC LineĀ Do Not Cross

High speed may be of more importance than the potential damage to the equipment for designing protection systems for transmission lines.  But in the case of power transformers, high cost of repair or replacement, and the possibility of fire or violent failure makes “limiting the damage” a major objective.  These and other philosophical issues are discussed in clause ... More

IEC 61850 Update

IEC 61850 Engineering

One of the significant features IEC 61850 has introduced is the configuration language SCL. SCL originally was the abbreviation for substation configuration language. Now that the use of IEC 61850 beyond substations has become reality, the name will be changed to system configuration language. The XML based SCL is used to exchange information between the different engineering tools. ... More

Lessons Learned

Transformer Differential Protection

In many ways, microprocessor-based transformer differential relays have simplified installations. They perform internal computations for phase-angle compensation and zero-sequence filtering. One can use these relays with lower burden Y-connected CTs regardless of transformer winding connections and can accommodate virtually any transformer application. Built-in metering displays secondary c... More

Indian Blackout 2010

Indian Blackout 2010

Grid disturbances in Northern Part of India on 2nd January, 2010. On 2nd January 2010, Northern part of the Indian Power system network was operating with depleted network caused by tripping of multiple transmission lines due to dense fog in most of the areas. Dense fog mixed with pollution reduces the breakdown strength of insulators and increases the conductivity along the surface of ins... More

New Maintenance and Testing Strategies for Protection and Control

New Maintenance and Testing Strategies for Protection and Control

Utilities have managed relay performance with periodic testing and calibration programs, using intervals and testing activities based on failure experience.  Many also use testing as the final confirmation of whether relays are set correctly.  However, a relay may fail at any time following a test, posing a hidden system performance risk.  Also, maintenance errors sometimes disa... More

Testing of Transformer Differential Protection

Testing of Transformer Differential Protection

Super fast and selective protection is required to protect power transformers in case of faults like internal or external short circuits. Faults with high fault currents that are not cleared instantaneously may lead to long term loss of a critical asset and very high repair costs – if a repair is still possible. Therefore it is state of the art to protect power transformers with diffe... More

Legal Issue

Legal & Ethical Concerns

Working in a positive work environment can be very rewarding and beneficial for any professional. Large companies offer good compensation, generous bonus packages, and prospects for growth are numerous. Such an environment would also provide training and an individual can acquire greater experience in shorter time. In their fight for survival however, firms have to be competitive and in... More

Aging Work Force

The Work Force in the Power Industry

Academic institutions provide the initial instructions. Industry focused instruction is provided to new graduates by their employers. The power industry needs to be very visible as a valuable, meaningful, and long-term career choice - to both students and new graduates. Within the power industry, appropriate business plans/models are necessary for identifying the work force requirement.... More

The Guru

Dr. Yoshifumi Ooura

PAC World:   Dr. Yoshifumi Ooura, please tell us when and where you were born and what is the first memory from your childhood? Y.O.: I was born on January 6, 1935 in the Chinese city of Liaoning Liaoyang. My first memory is from my kindergarten times in the city of Wafangdian. My memory from the days in elementary school is the diversity of the turbulent life in Dalian City after... More


Protection History: Field Failure Protection

In case of a loss of exciting current of a generator, the stator current increases and the damper winding is growing warm. To protect in such a case, generators of up to 50 MVA have been equipped with undercurrent relays in the excitation circuit. Since the excitation controller can also define small currents without the danger of underexcitation, the magnitude of excitation current could n... More

I Think

The Smart Grid drivers

When entering the word Smart Grid in an internet search engine nowadays you will get over nine million hits and from all the discussion forums, project initiatives and conferences on the theme it seems as if the Smart Grid hype has taken over the power industry like a storm. However when did the Smart Grid hype start? Who invented it? And  why are so many people excited about it? Give... More

Industry Reports

A glance at CSEE Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering

by  Xi-cai ZHAO, NR Electric Co., China Chinese Society for Electrical Engineering (CSEE) is a nonprofit, nongovernmental academic and professional organization of scientists and engineers in the electrical engineering field. The predecessor of CSEE is Chinese Society for Electrical Engineers, founded in Shanghai in 1934. CSEE has more than 120 thousand individual members and 100... More

IEC Functional Standards for measuring relays and protection equipment

by Dr. Murty V.V.S. Yalla, President at Beckwith Electric Co., USA International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) Technical Committee 95 Measuring Relays and Protection Equipment set up a maintenance team (MT4) in 2006 to revise the existing functional standards and develop new standards. Since their first meeting in Largo, Florida in Oct 2006 MT4 met 9 times in various countries. ... More

Conference Reports

2010 IEEE PES Transmission & Distribution Conference and Exposition

The motto of the 2010 IEEE PES event was "Smart Solutions for a Changing World". The 2010 IEEE Power and Energy Society Transmission and Distribution Conference and Exposition was held 19-22 April 2010 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. This is a very large event that brings together representatives of all different industries that have somethi... More

Advanced Metering, Protection Control, Communication and Distributed Resources

The Power Systems 2010 Conference was held 9th to 12th March, 2010. The Power Systems 2010 Conference was hosted by Clemson University at the Madren Center, Clemson University, Clemson, SC, USA. It is one of the first conferences that started bringing together specialists from different fields in the protection, automation and control industry, and giving them the opportunity to discus... More

Developments in Power System Protection, 2010, UK

The 10th International Conference on DPSP was held 29 March - 1 April 2010, Hilton Deansgate, Manchester, UK. The motto of the conference was "Managing the Change" – very appropriate at a time when the industry is focusing a lot of energy on the transition to a Smart Grid. What was interesting this time was that the conference followed in 2010 a very successful event in 20... More

DistribuTech 2010 Tampa, Florida, USA

The event was held 23-25 March, 2010 in Tampa, Florida. According to the organizers, this year's conference was the largest in its twenty years history. It featured twelve conference tracks and more than two hundred of the industry’s top speakers. One of the key concerns of the industry is the changing technology that requires the continuing education and training of prof... More

GeorgiaTech Fault & Disturbance Analysis Conference

The 13th Annual Georgia Tech Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference was held 3-4 May 2010 at the Georgia Tech Global Learning Center in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. This is, as far as we know, the only specialized international conference that focuses on the analysis of faults and disturbances, the tools that are needed to support them and the lessons learned from actual system events... More

Western Power Delivery Automation Conference, Spokane, USA

WPDA conference focused on  the issues of automation and control of power system substations. The WPDA Conference was held from 13 to 15 April, 2010. The 12th Annual Western Power Delivery Automation Conference was held at the historical Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington, USA. One of the advantages of this conference is that there are no parallel sessions, i.e. all atten... More

Book Review

IEC 61499 Function Blocks for Embedded and Distributed Control Systems Design

IEC 61850 is continuing to gain popularity due to the multiple benefits it offers to the protection, automation and control industry. Some of them are related to the ability to describe the functionality of different intelligent electronic devices by grouping logical nodes representing functional elements in logical devices that belong to a server. However, one of the gaps in this model is the ... More


Engineering a Great Home Made Beer

by Erich W. Gunther, EnerNex Corporation, USA Even the busiest people in our industry need a break from time to time. For Erich the best way to relax is by being busy doing something else he enjoys - brewing beer! Most people that know me may have noticed that I am a bit of a work-a-holic - OK, so maybe that is an understatement!  To address this, years ago my wife sugg... More

Final Thoughts
The articles in this edition of the magazine at first glance look like they are covering a range of different issues. But if we consider what the authors discuss, it becomes clear that these issues are somehow related. In our industry, the aging of the workforce and the loss of expertise, combined with the increasing workload and new advancements in the protection, automation and control te... More

Power. Flexible. Easergy.
Let?s start with organization in protection testing