Thursday, June 4, 2009

Distribution Automation or Remote Control?

Distribution Automation is one of the crucial technologies that build the backbone of the "SmartGrid" or "SmarterGrids". The future power delivery system will be based on more Automation at the lower voltage levels than before. Substation Automation is in place for High and Medium Voltage networks - usually Low Voltage networks are not really automated. They are protected by Protection Relays and controlled remotely by RTUs (Remote Terminal Units).

The automation functions for distribution networks is now being added to remote control either as local automation through auto-recloser and self-sectionalizing or via decision support tools. Distributed monitoring and control is the foundation to Distribution Automation - to improve the reliability of the network and to keep the aging infrastructure running. An aged transformer needs special attention to extend his life time, e.g., by preventing over loads and other stress situations.

The basis of automation are sensors that provide precise measurements - mainly of the ac current. There are first IEC 61850 compliant IEDs available that provide measurements and calculated values for LV and MV automation applications.

Click HERE [pdf] for information of Powersense or HERE for measurement units from Camille Bauer. More to come ...

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