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2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

Coordination of Overcurrent Relays Protection


Systems for Wind Power Plants
Nima Rezaei 1, 2, *; Mohammad Lutfi Othman 1, 2; Noor Izzri Abdul Wahab 1, 2; Hashim Hizam 1, 2
1
2

Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Centre for Advanced Power and Energy Research (CAPER), Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia
*

Corresponding Author: Nima Rezaei, Email: nima_rezaei_69@yahoo.com

implement simple protection schemes which leads to


different levels of damages to power components in the
plant. Moreover, most of the researches conducted
regarding wind farm protection has been abundantly
restricted to literatures and methodologies [3 - 5]. Some
researchers have been studied the effect of fault on wind
plants specially the generators and have investigated the
effectiveness of crowbars in protecting the wind turbine
generators [6]. However an overall protection scheme has
yet to come to solve the protection crisis in wind plants.

Abstract-Wind farms are one of the most indispensable


types of sustainable energies which are progressively
engaged in smart grids with tenacity of electrical power
generation predominantly as a distribution generation
system. Thus, rigorous protection of wind power plants is an
immensely momentous aspect in electrical power protection
engineering which must be contemplated thoroughly during
designing the wind plants to afford a proper protection for
power components in case of fault occurrence. The most
commodious and common protection apparatus are
overcurrent relays which are responsible for protecting
power systems from impending faults. In order to employ a
prosperous and proper protection for wind power plants,
these relays must be set precisely and well coordinated with
each other to clear the faults at the system in the shortest
possible time. This paper indicates how the coordination of
overcurrent relays can be effectively attained for wind power
plants in order to protect the power constituents during fault
incidence. Through this research Matlab/Simulink as a
powerful simulation software have been applied to model a
wind farm and achieve precise setting for coordination of
overcurrent relays.

One of the most important studies of power quality and


power system protection in wind plants is providing
adequate and continual power to the loads, therefore in
order to ensure having perpetual power from wind farms,
wind plants must feed grids continually. One way of
meeting this phenomena is applying a proper protection in
the system that in case of fault, only the section of faulty
feeder is disconnected from the system and the rest of
healthy parts are kept connected to the system. By using
overcurrent relays (OCRs) as a protection system and
applying an accurate coordination in wind plants, not only
in case of fault, the power components are protected from
damages from excessive currents but also continual power
flow is fed to the grid and superb power quality is provided
by wind power plants.

Keywords-Overcurrent Relay, Coordination of Overcurrent


Relay, Wind Power Plant, Power System Protection

I.

INTRODUCTION

The ever increasingly air pollution rate and the


limitation of fossil fuel sources have led to comprehensive
implementation of renewable energies specifically wind
energy. Wind power plants have been vastly employed as
the means of power generation in smart grids as a
distribution generation (DG) system [1]. Undoubtedly,
wind power has come to be mainstay of the energy systems
in several countries and is regarded as a reliable and
financially reasonable source of electricity. The
contribution of wind energy to power generation has
reached a considerable share even on the worldwide level.
Among many countries that are investing hugely on wind
power generation, the top 10 leading nations in total power
generation capacity are: China, USA, Germany, Spain,
India, United Kingdom, Italy, France, Canada and Portugal
[2].

This paper demonstrates how OCRs have been


successfully used and properly coordinated in a wind
power plant. The software which has been used is
Matlab/Simulink which is known as one of the best
simulation software for electrical engineers and
researchers. All of the OCRs have been modelled and
designed and the accurate settings have been selected to
protect the wind plant.
Section 2 of this paper, discusses about OCRs, their
function, how they are set and coordinated to provide
proper protection. Moreover IEC standards for setting the
OCRs have also been represented. In section 3, the wind
plant model studied in this paper has been illustrated and
load flow during normal operation and during fault
occurrence have been simulated as well. Section 4 has been
dedicated to OCRs settings for the wind plant based on the
results obtained in section 3. Beside that OCRs have been
tested in order to assure their credibility and validity of
relays function. At the end, Conclusion has been brought to
summarize all of the materials discussed in the paper.

Progressively amplification of grids by wind farms


have led to emergence of some significant electrical issues
including security, protection, stability, reliability and
power quality. Among these issues, protection aspect plays
an enormous role which needs a serious attention by
researchers. Although protection of wind farms is a crucial
issue that needs a huge attention, wind power plants still

978-1-4799-7297-5/14/$31.00 2014 IEEE

394

2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

II.

with each other, the relay opperation time and CTI must be
taken into consideration. Aftter the characteristics of these
relays are designated, then the
t coordination of OCRs can
be properly undertaken.

OVERCURRENT RELAY

OCRs have the same basic I/O signal opperation as other


types of relays. In these relays, if the incooming current is
higher than the preset current value, the rellay will send out
an output signal to the circuit breaker (CB
B) to disconnect
the circuit in order to protect the power coomponents from
the result of current excess. There are threee main types of
OCRs used in power systems, which are: definite current
relay, definite time relay and inverse time relay. The most
common type is inverse time relay whichh has an inverse
curve characteristic. This curve defines the operation of the
relay which functions in a faster time as the current
increases. These types of relays are usuallly included with
an instantaneous unit which causes the relay
r
to operate
instantaneously when the current reachees a high limit
magnitude thus eliminating the damagee to the power
components.

Coordination of OCRs baasically means that the closest


relay to the fault location, which is referred to as the
primary relay, must first trip the CB, and in case the relay
does not trip or malfunctionss, the other relay closest to the
primary relay, which is calleed the backup relay, must trip.
This coordination is extremeely crucial and is conducted in
order to decrease the expandeed power loss and avert power
quality compromise. The coordination
c
phenomenon is
depicted in Fig 1. In thiss figure, OCR1 as primary
protection must trip to the
t
fault. In case of any
malfunction, OCR2 as backuup protection should trip. Also
if OCR2 does not operate, OCR3 as the second backup
protection must trip and discoonnect the feeder.

Inverse time OCRs based on their seensitivity to the


current and time can have several characteeristics which is
reliant on the application. These OCRs typpes, according to
IEC standard are depicted in Table 1. Below
w.
Table 1. Different Characteristic of OCRs Based on
o IEC Standards
Type of OCR
Normally Inverse

Opeeration time
.
TSM
T
I
.
I

Very Inverse

TSM

I
I

Extremely Inverse

Long Time Inverse

Fig 1.The Concept of


o OCRs Coordination

TSM
I

III.

TSM
I
I

SIMULATION RESULTS FO
OR OCRS COORDINATION IN A
WIND PLANT

Matlab/Simulink as a pow
werful software has been used
to model the wind plant, relays, set the relay settings and
coordinate them well with each other. A typical wind
power plant has been modellled in this paper and based on
the load flow, OCRs usinng IEC standard has been
designed, set and coordinatedd.

m be properly
In power systems, all of these OCRs must
coordinated with each other in order to prrotect the power
elements from the currents. To do so, the vital settings of
OCRs, which are the Plug Setting Multipplier (PSM) and
the Time Setting Multiplier (TSM), must be set suitably.
% and in steps of
PSM is varied in the range of 50% to 200%
25% [7]. This setting is only used for inverrse current relays
which detect phase to phase fault. For the relays
r
that detect
phase to ground fault, the PSM is quitee different. It is
varied in in the range of 10% to 40% in steeps of 10%, or in
the range of 20% to 80% in steps of 20%
%. The point that
should be taken into consideration is thatt the more Plug
Setting (PS) the relay has, the higher cuurrent the relay
requires to trip. TSM ranges from 0 to 1 in steps of 0.1.
However, sometimes it varies in stepss of 0.05. The
maximum TSM is 1 and the minimum is 0.05.
0
In order to
coordinate OCRs with each other, there iss a time interval
between a primary relay and a backup relaay operation and
this is called the Coordination Time Interrval (CTI). This
time interval is in the range of 0.3 and 0.5 seconds for
r
it is set at
conventional relays, while for numerical relays
0.2 seconds, which means they operate fasster compared to
conventional relays [8]. So in order to cooordinate relays

The wind power plant modelled


m
in this paper, consists
of 3 wind turbines that eacch of them produce 2.5 MW
power. Their voltage and freequency are 575V and 60 Hz
respectively. Transformers corresponding to each wind
o 575V/25KV in star delta
turbine has voltage ratio of
configuration where the staar side is earthed. The last
Transformer corresponding too the grid has the voltage ratio
of 25KV/110KV and delta sttar configuration where star is
earthed. The transmission linnes have 20 Km length each.
The wind power plant modell is illustrated in Fig 2. In this
figure, since the protection area
a
is the main scope of this
paper, the breakers have been highlighted as Red colour
named by CB1, CB2 CB88 and the corresponding relays
to each breakers, are highlighhted as green colour shown by
R1, R2 R8.

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2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

Fig 2. Simulink Model for Wind Power Plant


Fig 4. Load Flow through CB7
C during Normal Operation

In wind power plants, since the windd is not always


stable and is fluctuating all the time, thereefore the current
generated by the wind turbines is also varyying according to
the wind velocity. The minimum adequatee wind speed for
wind turbines to produce electricity is 5m
mps however the
maximum wind speed that wind turbiness can tolerate is
25mps. If the wind velocity exceeds that vaalue, then it will
damage the wind turbine generators and sometimes
s
cause
fire in case of long duration of high wind sppeed. In order to
protect the wind turbines from high winnd speed in this
paper, a protective block is located to trip the
t wind turbine
as soon as the wind speed exceeds 25. Wiind speed in this
paper is selected to be varying in range of 5 to 25mps. The
wind plant currents characteristics at eachh CB is depicted
in Fig 3 to 6 at normal operation.

200

Current (A)

150

100

50

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)
T

40

50

60

Fig 5. Load Flow through CB2


C during Normal Operation
200

In order to set the relays and coordinatee them properly,


the exact value of current and short circuitt current flowing
through each CB should be derived. Figg 7. to Fig 10.
Depicts the characteristic of current in Am
mper unit at each
CB before, during and after fault. In thiss simulation, the
total simulation time is 60s. A three phase fault has been
f 5s.
imposed to each breaker at time 30 lasting for

Current (A)

150

100

50

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)
T

40

50

60

Fig 6. Load Flow through CB1


C during Normal Operation

120
100

300

60

250
Current (A)

Current (A)

350
80

40
20

200
150
100

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

50
0
0

Fig 3. Load Flow through CB8 during Normaal Operation

400
Current (A)

20

30
Time (S)
T

40

50

Fig 7. Load Flow throough CB8 during Fault

500

300
200
100
0
0

10

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

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2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

As an example, when there is fault near CB8, relay 8


must detect the fault and send the proper tripping signal to
the CB8 to disconnect the system until the fault is cleared.
As it is clear in the pictures, relay8 trips at time 30.1141
and the CB8 has disconnected the feeder exactly at
30.1141 which shows the relay and CB are working well.

Current (A)

1500

1000

500

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

The other scenario that must be taken into


consideration is that in case relay 8 has not tripped and
malfunctioned, the closest relay to relay 8 which is relay7
must trip after a specific delay time which is known as
CTI. In Fig 15. This phenomena is shown. Since the CTI is
set to be as 0.3s, then as it is expected, relay7 must trip and
command the CB7 to disconnect the feeder at time
30.5055. This concept is repeated for the rest of the relays
as well.

60

Fig 8. Load Flow through CB7 during Fault


2000

Current (A)

1500

1000

This procedures have been tested for all of the faults at


each CB and the results of relay settings, have been
compiled in Table 2. In this table all of the current
measurements are in Amper unit. Ipickup and Ipickup
relay refers to the minimum magnitude of current that the
relay trips before and after the Current Transformer (CT)
respectively. The fourth column represents the CT ratio at
each relay. PS, PSM and TSM corresponds to the relay
settings that describes how each relay has been set and
behaves in case of fault. The last column illustrates T that
is the amount of delay time that the relay trips. One thing
that should be taken into consideration is that since all of
the 3 wind turbine feeders have the same current
characteristics, therefore relay settings for relays1, 3 and 5
are the same. Also the relay setting for relays2, 4 and 6 are
the same as each other too.

500

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

Fig 9. Load Flow through CB2 during Fault


2000

Current (A)

1500

1000

500

0
0

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

Through the simulation results it is resulted that relays


have been set accurately and are well coordinated with
each other in order to protect the wind power plant. All of
the relays settings have been conducted using IEC
standards and according to section 2 of this paper
regarding OCRs settings, all of the TSM has been set by
standardization of 0.05 which means the value of each
TSM has been rounded to higher value with value of 0.05.
Thus OCRs can be considered as one of the best and most
successful technique of protection for wind farms.

Fig 10. Load Flow through CB1 during Fault

As it can be seen from the simulation, at time 30, when


a three phase fault is imposed to the system, current is
increased abundantly and voltage dips drastically which
can damage the power systems and compromise the power
quality. Therefore a proper protection must be employed to
prevent this catastrophe. In this paper OCRs as the best
protection relay in wind power plants have been
implemented and the results in the next section have
affirmed its prosperity, effectiveness and accuracy.
IV.

Table 2. OCRs Settings for the Wind Power Plant

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

After getting the required data for setting the relays,


including exact value of load current and short circuit
current at each CB, OCRs can then be modelled, set and
coordinated. In order to get the best results with purpose of
relays coordination, the exact value of short circuit current
located near each CB should be extracted and based on the
maximum load current, relays can be set.

Relay
R1
R2
R3
R4
R5
R6
R7
R8

The results below demonstrates that relays have been


successfully set and are well coordinated with each other.
CTI has been opted as to be 0.3s and normal inverse relay
has been chosen in this simulation. Fig 11. To Fig 14.
Illustrates the relays behaviour at each fault occurred from
time 30 to 35. In these figures, 1 means the relay is in
normal condition and has not tripped, and 0 means the
relay has tripped due to the fault current. Fig 16. To Fig
19. Depicts the CBs operation corresponding the each
relays.

Ipickup
75
75
75
75
75
75
187.5
37.5

Ipickup relay
3.75
3.75
3.75
3.75
3.75
3.75
6.25
3.75

CT
100:5
100:5
100:5
100:5
100:5
100:5
150:5
50:5

PS
75%
75%
75%
75%
75%
75%
125%
75%

PSM
45.27
13.51
45.27
13.51
45.27
13.51
3.91
19.59

TSM
0.65
0.30
0.65
0.30
0.65
0.30
0.1
0.05

T
1.1484
0.8055
1.1484
0.8055
1.1484
0.8055
0.5055
0.1141

Current (A)

1.5
Tripping at 30.1141

1
0.5
0
-0.5
-1
29

30

31

32
33
Time (S)

34

Fig 11. Relay8 Tripping during Fault

397

35

36

2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

1500

Tripping at 30.5055

Current (A)

Current (A)

1.5

0.5
0

1000

500

-0.5
-1
29

30

31

32
33
Time (S)

34

35

0
0

36

Fig 12. Relay7 Tripping during Fault

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

50

60

50

60

Fig 17. CB7 Operation during Fault

2000

1.5
Tripping at 30.8055

Current (A)

Current (A)

1500
1
0.5
0

1000

500
-0.5
-1
29

30

31

32
33
Time (S)

34

35

0
0

36

Fig 13. Relay2 Tripping during Fault

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

Fig 18. CB2 Operation during Fault

2000

1500

Tripping at 31.1484

Current (A)

Current (A)

1.5

0.5
0

1000

500
-0.5
-1
29

30

31

32
33
Time (S)

34

35

0
0

36

Fig 14. Relay1 Tripping during Fault

Current (A)

V.

R8
R7
R2
R1

0.5
0
-0.5
31

32
33
Time (S)

34

35

36

Fig 15. Operation of Relay 7, 2 and 1 in Case Relay 8 malfunctions


350
300
Current (A)

40

CONCLUSION

Acknowledgement

250
200

The authors wish to thank the Universiti Putra


Malaysia for the research grant Geran Putra IPB, project
no. GPIPB/2013/9412101 and vote no. 9412101 that
funds this work.

150
100
50
0
0

30
Time (S)

In this paper, a comprehensive protection for wind


power plants has been successfully implemented by using
OCRs. Three phase fault has been imposed at each CB and
the settings for each relay has been conducted. Moreover
all of the relays have been modelled based on IEC
standards in order to provide proper protection for the
system, prevent the damage from fault current to the power
components, provide perpetual power to the grid and
contribute to superb power quality. The results have shown
that OCRs can be successfully employed for wind power
plants and has proved to be effective, accurate, and be
considered as the best method for protection.

30

20

Fig 19. CB1 Operation during Fault

1.5

-1
29

10

10

20

30
Time (S)

40

50

60

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Fig 16. CB8 Operation during Fault

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2014 IEEE International Conference Power & Energy (PECON)

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