Protection System Testing Improvements

Project ID: 2446
Principal Investigator: Jim DeHaan
Research Topic: Improved Power Generation
Priority Area Assignments: 2014 (Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation), 2015 (Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation), 2016 (Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation)
Funded Fiscal Years: 2014, 2015 and 2016
Keywords: none

Research Question

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Need and Benefit

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Contributing Partners

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Research Products

Bureau of Reclamation Review

The following documents were reviewed by experts in fields relating to this project's study and findings. The results were determined to be achieved using valid means.

Protection System Testing Improvements (final, PDF, 1.7MB)
By Jim DeHaan
Publication completed on September 30, 2016

A hydro generator at one of the Bureau of Reclamation's facilities tripped offline due to a differential relay element operation concurrent to an external single line to ground fault on the nearby 230 kV transmission system. Post analysis of the event indicated that the fault did not originate within the generator differential zone of protection and thus the generator should not have tripped Analysis of the generator differential relay data showed suggested an issue with the phase-B's neutral CT. Based on the physical orientation of the neutral bus connections, it was determined that the external magnetic flux generated by the fault current flowing on phase-A bus, the neutral shorting bar and phase-C bus caused local saturation of phase-B's CT. The saturation of the phase-B's CT caused the generator to unnecessarily trip. Research was able to recreate this mis-operation in our laboratory and the results of this work are discussed. This issues identified with this research have Reclamation and industry-wide implications as this neutral CT configuration is very common.


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Last Updated: 4/4/17