June 2014 Issue
At the beginning of the industrial revolution were the machines. Everything was mechanical until the invention of electricity. That was the second industrial revolution and the beginning of electric power systems and accordingly – power systems protection and control.   The first protection devices were mechanical or electromechanical and over the years they became more and m... More


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Industry News

A New Standard for Digital Interface

Today’s IEC 61850 9-2 implementations of merging units and multifunctional IEDs are based on the Implementation Guideline for Digital Interface to Instrument Transformers using IEC 61850-9-2 published by the UCA International Users Group. The scope of IEC Technical Committee 38 is Standardization in the field of AC and/or DC current and/or voltage instrument transformers, including thei... More

Alstom Advances in MiCOM P141-P145

Distribution Feeder Protection & Control Alstom announces significant advances in its feeder manager IEDs.  Integrated functionality now permits control of up to eight switchgear elements, in addition to circuit breaker control.  To support the improved control capability, the hardware extends up to a maximum of 48 opto inputs.  Software changes include improving the sensitivi... More

Basler Electric

New features added to BE1-11 BESTCOMSPlus® A recent reliability report shows that the majority of relay misoperations are caused by incorrect settings. In today’s fast-paced world, protection and control users need to minimize misoperations regardless of cause. Some companies think you should be more careful and develop better practices in setting relays. Basler believes you need a ... More

new GTNET-SV firmware

GTNET-SV (9.2LE and Non-9.2LE) for the RTDS® Simulator The new GTNET-SV firmware for the GTNET card is a free upgrade for existing GTNET-SV customers and allows an option to produce 9.2LE and Non-9.2LE data. The Non-9.2LE configuration is intended for the version of SV used in China and for the new IEC 61869-9 configuration. Up to 24 channels can be configured by the user as Voltage, ... More

Omicron's IEDScout: Optimized working with IEC 61850 devices

Version 4.00 of OMICRON’s IEDScout software tool now supports edition 2 of IEC 61850 and IEC 61400-25. It conveniently visualizes the commissioning workflow and shows the description texts as defined in the standard.  IEDScout supports protection and substation automation engineers, who work with IEC 61850 devices, in a variety of applications, such as:  Testing Co... More


High-fidelity HIL modeling on FPGA The main limitation of HIL simulation on CPU is the time required to transfer data between the I/Os and the CPU that are connected to the Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA). Transfers pass through the PCIe bus, with data transfer times in the microseconds, therefore it wasn't possible to lower the timestep below a few microseconds. By using the FPGA f... More

Siemens provides Smart grid remote terminal units for decentralized energy resources

With the SICAM SGU, Siemens’ Smart Grid Division provides a communications-capable field device, which can be used to connect distributed energy resources to a grid control or energy management system by means of communications technology. Used as an input/output (I/O) unit, SICAM SGU allows power companies and public utilities to control and monitor decentralized power generation facil... More

Technology News

Intensity Modulated Sensor Technology

SmartSenseCom’s Electrical Phenomena Cluster (EPC) Optical Monitoring System measures both current and voltage through the use of a single measurement device per phase (the EPC), combined with electronics which can be shared among devices.  The core optical technology is licensed from the U.S. Navy and adapted to measure voltage, current, phase and other characteristics of electr... More

Organic Mega Flow Battery -

a possible breakthrough for renewable energy The mismatch between the availability of intermittent wind or sunshine and the variability of demand is the biggest obstacle to getting a large fraction of our electricity from renewable sources. A cost-effective means of storing large amounts of electrical energy could solve this problem. A team of Harvard scientists and engineers has demonstr... More

Cover Story

IEC 61850-9-2 Process Bus

Its Impact on Power System Protection and Control Reliability High-speed network communications have already changed the world we live in and are starting to bring significant changes to the way we control and operate the power system. To be successful, new technology requires industry-wide agreement on diverse topics such as system architecture, communications infrastructure, data models,... More

IEC 61850 Update

Profiling IEC 61850

This raised a couple of questions: Can we avoid some of the options? What does something that is declared as optional mean? What is the consequence for the vendor that is implementing a product based on IEC 61850? What is the consequence for the end user? If we look into the details of IEC 61850, there is no generic answer to this question. The answer would be - it depends. It depends, at ... More

Lessons Learned

Digital Substations: Feedback on Site Experience

Non-conventional fully-digital instrument transformers were selected due to their low mass and slim line construction, replacing conventional wound current transformers.  Correct application of IEC 61850 standards allowed a lot more of the substation engineering to be undertook in the controlled environment of the factory, rather than on the substation site – where outage times and... More

Sharing IEC 61850 Sampled Values

Sampled Values

A combination of these vital technologies was used in the world’s first commercial implementation of IEC 61850-9-2 LE to refurbish a substation that was first commissioned in 1999. The commissioning of a series of six outdoor substations with process bus and NCIT technology began in 1999. The mixed technology, or “hybrid” substations supplied to the Australian utility, Powerlink... More

IEC 61850 SV

Testing of IEC 61850 Sampled Value based Devices and Systems

The successful integration of these devices The first component of the test system is the configuration tool that takes advantage of the standard substation or IED configuration files defined in Part 6 of IEC 61850 The second component is a Simulation Tool that generates the current and voltage waveforms. The specifics of each simulated test condition are determined by the complete, as well... More

Legal Issue

Smart Meter Privacy Safeguards

With the advancement of Smart Grid a next-generation of smart meters are getting into the homes of numerous consumers in the US and in different parts of the EU as well. The new meters that are replacing the old technology will allow the consumers to monitor the energy they use, thus saving money for many households. The new features included into the smart meters will make the reading and the c... More

Propagation Delays

Measuring Propagation Delays and Assessing Performance of Power Utility Communication Networks

Many of the concerns originated from network arbitration and congestion problems that occurred in the early days of Ethernet, which are much less an issue with today's switched Ethernet networks. As long as only client/server and GOOSE traffic are present on the network, there are no real challenges because the network load is relatively low. But when Sampled Values become involved, high packet ra... More

The Guru

Interview with PACWorld guru Mohammed Behabid

PAC World: When and where were you born? M.B: I was born in a farm about 300 km east of Algiers on February 12, 1940. I am 74 years old. PAC World: Where did you go to school and did you have any special interests while there? M.B.: There was no school in the farm where I grew up or in the neighboring settlements. We had to reach a large village called at the time Lafayette and now Bougaa in Wi... More


Protection History

The last issue of the magazine described the usage of computers in substations for protection. The central computer solution was driven by economic reasons. Since powerful microprocessors became available decentralized devices to be used in feeders could be realized. This started in 1975. The article describes the implementation of the first digital relays at different vendors. The data is base... More

I Think

To Process Bus or not To

This concept, standardized in the first edition of IEC 61850 in 2004 already encompasses the use of sample value streams and smart messages in combination with a communication network, from the location where the data to be used (measurements and trip and blocking signals) was being generated. The use of sample value streams and the smart (GOOSE) messages combined with a communication network tru... More

Industry Reports

Implementation Guideline

The Implementation guideline for digital interface to instrument transformers using IEC 61850-9-2 is a document that was produced by a group of experts from all major suppliers and a few utilities which participated in the working group “Digital IT” of the UCA International Users Group. This profile of the standard is commonly referred to as IEC 61850 9-2 LE. It gives additional info... More

Conference Reports

Developments in Power System Protection (DPSP 2014) - Boston, USA

The 12th International Conference on Developments in Power System Protection (DPSP) was held  at the Tivoli Hotel and Congress Center in Copenhagen, Denmark. It was organized by IET (The Institution of Engineering and Technology) and for many years has been a leading forum for academics, industry and business leaders in the field of power system protection, automation and control s... More

IEEE PES ISGT 2014 Conference, Washington, D.C., USA

The Fifth Conference on Innovative Smart Grid Technologies 2014 sponsored by the IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES), was held at the Washington Hyatt in the District of Columbia, USA. It was a forum for the participating specialists from universities, manufacturers, regulators and academics to discuss state-of-the-art innovations in smart grid technologies. The conference started with a keyn... More

IEEE PES Transmission & Distribution Conference & Exposition

The 2014 IEEE PES Transmission & Distribution Conference & Exposition was held 14-17 April 2014 at the West Building of McCormick Place in Chicago, USA. Celebrating half-a-century anniversary, this landmark event was a showcase of the technologies, products, companies and ideas that will lead the electric power industry through the next fifty years and beyond. Accordingly, the motto of the ... More

Power and Energy Automation Conference, (PEAC) Spokane, WA, USA

PEAC 2014 was held at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane, WA, USA. Considering the conferences held in the past as the Western Power Delivery Automation Conference, this was the 16th edition of a conference organized by Washington State University (WSU). The motto of this year’s conference was “Creating the Future of Power Automation”. As usual the conference venue... More

Texas A&M Conference for Protective Relay Engineers, 2014

The event was held 31 March - 3 April 2014, in College Station, TX, USA. The 67th Annual Conference for Protective Relay Engineers was held 31 March - 3 April 2014 in College Station, Texas.  The oldest specialized protection conference aims to help protection engineers understand new protection concepts, advances in equipment and discuss with their peers problems that have occurred i... More

The CIGRE Belgium conference

The event was held at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Brussels, Belgium. The Opening session started with welcoming remarks from the Conference Chair Markus Berger from Elia, followed by Keynote presentations by Daniel Dobbeni, President Eurogrid International and Former President ENTSO-E talking about “A perfect storm” followed by Klaus Frohlich, Chairman CIGRE Paris who presented &... More

Book Review

Measurement, Control, and Communication Using IEEE 1588

A common sense of time among all the elements of a distributed protection, control and measurement system allows the use of new techniques for the solution of problems with complex synchronization requirements or arising from the interaction of many sensors. Such a common sense of time may be accomplished using the IEEE Standard for a Precision Clock Synchronization Protocol for Networked Measur... More


The Adventure of Endlessly Exploring Life

by Nina Selak, S&C Electric Company, Canada I earned my Bachelor of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver, Canada, and was hired into the Engineer-In-Training program at BC Hydro (British Columbia Utility Government Corporation) in February 2008. During my five years with the company, I rotated through a number of departments. This ... More

Final Thoughts
For many people IEC 61850 sampled values may look like emerging technology. But that is not the case. They have been around for a while. With electromechanical and solid state relays we simply had no choice. We needed and electric signal to drive the electromechanical device or the electronic circuits. And that was the output of the current and voltage transformers - secondary currents and vol... More

BeijingSifang June 2016