CIGRE - General Session 2008, Paris, France

CIGRÉ's General Session provides a unique permanent forum for delegates and exhibitors.

The 2008 CIGRE Session, as usual, was held in the Palais de Congres (Congress Palace) in Paris. It was attended by about four thousand specialists from more than eighty countries around the world - evenly representing utilities, manufacturers,  consultants, researchers, academics and students. These numbers show the importance of the event, making it one of the key global events for our industry.

About four hundred papers on tens of preferential subjects submitted from member countries' National Committees were accepted for inclusion in the conference program. Twenty three papers were focused on protection, control and automation subjects. Even that Paris is a place that offers the visitor a lot of entertainment, art and food, the attendees spent the day participating in paper discussion sessions, working group meetings, technical committee meetings or exploring the new technical solutions offered by manufacturers at the exhibition.

As part of the 42nd CIGRE Session, Study Committee B5 "Protection and Automation" organized an open technical discussion based on two preferential subjects:

  • PS1: Impact of process-bus (IEC61850-9-2) on protection and substation automation systems
  • PS2: Life cycle management of protection and control systems

The Special Reporter for PS1 was Christoph Brunner, Switzerland and the Special Reporter for PS2 was Iony Patriota de Siqueira, Brazil.

The six papers submitted for Preferential Subject 1 covered aspects like:

  • System architecture considering system reliability
  • Benefits of the technology
  • Practical experience
  • Condition monitoring of primary equipment
  • Testing of a process bus based system

More detailed report on the discussion of PS1 is available under Industry Reports of this issue of the magazine, provided by Christoph Brunner.

The seventeen papers covering topics related to Preferential Subject 2 discussed:

  • Testing methods for protection and control systems
  • Impact of IEC 61850 on testing and asset management
  • Lifetime management of protection and control systems
  • Remote management of protection and control systems
  • Exploitation of protection and control systems.

The Protection and Automation session was attended by around 400 experts that participated in active discussions of the papers and the reports.

The questions posed by the special reporters lead to a very lively discussion. Many specialists from around the world delivered, in the two or three minutes allowed, their prepared contributions in response to the questions. Spontaneous contributions were made at the end of the discussions on each of the two preferential subjects.

Summaries of the Special Reports on both preferential subjects were published in this Summer 2008 issue of PAC World.

A major part of the CIGRE Session is the vendors' exhibition. It brings all leading manufacturers of electric power systems transmission technology and gives the attendees of the conference an opportunity to experience directly the latest products available on the market and discuss their applications with the vendors' representatives.

One of the obvious things related to protection, automation and control was the increased number of IEC 61850 compliant devices, as well as a new generation of Intelligent Electronic Devices designed specifically for operation in distributed solutions based on the standard.

Visitors to the exhibition discussed IEC 61850 and its applications not only with experts at the individual manufacturers'

booths, but also attended a seminar on the subject at the UCA International Users Group stand.

The Buffet-Dinner was organized by the French National Committee and CIGRE at the "Pavillons de Bercy."

It gave an opportunity to the participants at the conference to relax and enjoy the festive atmosphere, French food and wine, while making friends with colleagues from other corners of the world.

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