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  MORE than a supplier     HV Power Customer Newsletter November 2018    
        Holiday hours    

    In this issue:

Photo - Warwick Beech


Don’t be blindsided

No I am not talking about an unexpected punch to the head, but rather not being able to perceive the truth of a situation. We have five basic senses (sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch). None of those however are effective for making real-time power industry measurements – that’s why we rely on relays/meters and other instrumentation with associated CT/VT to bring those values to levels more appropriate for measurement.

This month’s newsletter has a recurring theme relating to perceiving the truth.

Your trusty Power Quality meter, for example, might not be telling you the whole truth when harmonics beyond its sampling speed are present. Low Power CTs are more truthful than traditional CTs – especially when subjected to large fault currents.

So my message is to be aware you may be getting a 'filtered view'. Be prepared to open your eyes to using new technology! Just because your network has always used traditional CTs/VTs does not mean it always will. With time, genuinely innovative (new) technologies become the ‘standard design’. So why not be the one to challenge the conventional and help move your organisation to these ‘future standards’- now? Unleash the benefits of improved performance and cost savings that these new technologies (truthfully) provide.


Warwick Beech

Holiday hours

For your project planning and forward ordering, please note that HV Power’s offices will close on the afternoon of Friday 21 December 2018 and will reopen on Monday 7 January 2019.

We will be monitoring our main office phone for messages during the Christmas period, so if you need urgent support this will be the best way to get in touch with us (that is, phone '0800 HV CALL' [0800 48 22 55]).


      Low Power CTs & VTs    
Low Power CT and VT

The Siemens SIPROTEC Compact range of protection relays already support low power CTs and VTs. Next year SIPROTEC 5 will support them too – via a couple of new I/O expansions modules.

So what’s the big deal about low power CTs and VTs?

Traditional CTs have been around a long time so their use is ‘standardised’, which means they are relatively low cost and they are reliable. However for protection applications, a lot of careful engineering must go into sizing of the CT. In addition, much of the setting and protection element design is not so much ‘protection related’ but rather catering for the possibility of CT saturation during a large fault and secondly, not truly reflecting the primary current.

So why consider Lower Power CTs (LPCTs)?

  • LPCTs do not suffer from saturation – eliminating one of the biggest protection headaches.
  • For panel builders, due to the linearity, one LPCT can be stocked compared to having different traditional CTs ratios for different loads – that is: less inventory and more flexibility.
  • LPCTs have a better frequency response, so support improved (more truthful) PQ monitoring.
  • The smaller size and weight of LPCTs makes for an overall smaller switchgear (yes – increasing the panel width of switchgear just to accommodate the CTs is common – and expensive).
  • With LPCTs open circuit secondary connections are not hazardous.

Low Power VTs have similar advantages, but the biggest is the dramatic reduction in size/weight and price.
In fact, Low Power VT monitoring of each incomer/feeder on a switchboard becomes a cost-effective alternative, eliminating the troublesome bus VT (troublesome from a point of view of fusing, testing, isolating/earthing).

For more reading on this subject download this CIRED conference paper.


      PAS Version 8.12 (Power Automation System)    

PAS is a Siemens ‘Power Automation System’, which is a software platform for utility substation use. Here within New Zealand, its main use is to interface from the IEC 61850 communications between substation IEDs to the remote DNP SCADA master. In these cases the PAS becomes a data concentrator, protocol converter and gateway. The PAS supports other substation protocols such as IEC 103, DNP and MODBUS . In addition, the PAS also provides local automation functionality, and optional bolt-on modules for automatic fault record extraction, centralised power quality database reporting, and the ability to provide local/remote HMI displays.

One of the key benefits of PAS is its ease of use, where mapping of points can be achieved with minimal efforts. New licencing options available in ‘PAS Compact’ now allow the PAS software to be cost-effectively deployed in smaller substations, so feel free to contact us to discuss how PAS can work for you.


      WinPQ mobil version    
A.Eberle PQ-Box 150 and PQ-Box 200

The recent upgrade of the popular PQ-Box 100/150/200/300 Power Quality Analyser setup and evaluation tool 'WinPQ mobil’ provides:

  • Ability to correct the phase angle of miniature current clamps
  • Simplification of templates - for those fortunate to have more than one PQ-Box type, the device template files are now common for all devices
  • PQ-Box 300 Supraharmonic plot
  • A firmware upgrade for PQ-Box 300 provides improved transient capture (with 410 kHz sampling)

See our HV Power website Technical Library for links to download the new software.


      Why purchase a PQ Analyser that can record beyond the 50th harmonic voltage?    

The PQ-Box 300 features the ability to measure and report up to the 3,400th harmonic voltage - way beyond the traditional 50th harmonic that most utilities PQ devices are capable of measuring.  It was built in response to the need to see what effect modern PV inverters and EV chargers have on the power system. Not everyone needs that capability of measurement – but serious consideration should be given to use of PQ recorders with more than the traditional 10 kHz sampling /50th harmonic measurement capability.

The risk of using a PQ logger with lower sampling speed is that the device is not going to show you high-order effects that may be present on your network. You will get a ‘filtered’ view, not showing the true picture of what equipment on your network is actually being subjected to.

As a picture is worth a thousand words, the image below shows results obtained from monitoring the same power supply (at the same time) with a 10 kHz sampling device (the PQ-Box 100, with 50th harmonic capability) and a 40 kHz sampling device (the PQ-Box 200 with 200th harmonic capability). [Unfortunately a PQ-Box 300 was not available at the time this comparison was undertaken].

PQ-Box 100 pure sine wave
PQ-Box 100 shows a pure sine wave.


PQ-Box 200
PQ-Box 200 shows sine wave distortion.


      DIGSI 5 Quick Note 0020 – SIPROTEC 5 Commissioning Features    
DIGSI 5 Quick Note - Commissioning features

Having recently being involved in delivering roll-out training for SIPROTEC 5 relays around New Zealand, we had a number of interesting questions raised by technicians and network engineers on the fine detail of the SIPROTEC 5 commissioning features. In response to these questions we have written up ‘DIGSI 5 Quick Note 0020’ which is now available on our website.

For sure at first glance the ‘Quick Note’ might seem to be quite long and detailed, as it attempts to cover each of the valid combinations of the three main SIPROTEC 5 device ‘Operating modes’ and the seven possible ‘Test Suite’ functions. For each of the valid combinations we then describe how the relay responds against seven different ‘typical use’ conditions. So while the ‘Quick Note’ may not be a ‘quick’ read, hopefully it will be a resource for those who want to get full use out of these very useful features.

There’s no question - we are excited about the different commissioning features in SIPROTEC 5. We always appreciate user feedback - especially where these features have delivered better efficiency or simply where users have found them useful or even a joy to use.

If you’re a protection/design engineer or technician and any (or all) of this article sounds like gobbledygook, do give us a call. We’d be happy to visit with a SIPROTEC 5 relay and give you a demo of the DIGSI 5 and SIPROTEC 5 ‘Test Suite’. In comparison to writing lines and lines of proprietary code, the Siemens visual CFC logic and online and offline test features are a joy to see and use in practice!


Copyright 2018 HV Power Measurements and Protection Ltd