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REVERSE POWER RELAY

1. Reverse Power Relays are used for Protection of Alternators and at the end of Parallel
feeders, to prevent feeding back of Power in the wrong direction.

2. Reverse power feeding may happen in case of Generators connected in parallel or


Generators connected to Grid.

3. The purpose of the Reverse Power Protection is basically to prevent damage on the
prime mover. If the driving torque is less than the total losses in the generator and the
prime mover, the Generator starts to work as a Synchronous Motor taking the necessary
active power from the network

4. In the case of steam turbines , the reduction of steam flow reduces the cooling effect
on the turbine blades and over heating may occur.

5. In the case of Hydraulic turbines the damage may be due to water surfing on the blades
due to which an axial pressure may develop on the bearings.

6. In the case of Diesel engines the damage could be due to insufficient lubrication.

7.Theory of Reverse Power


7.1 1st Quadrant Operation : Fig 1

E
I

0 (+)
Fig-1

Let us consider the phase relationship of the current delivered by the generator with the
busbar voltage. Other Generators are supposed to be feeding this busbar and running in
parallel with the said generator. In the Fig1. OE is the bus voltage and OI is the generator
current. The current lags behind the voltage by . Angle depends on 2 factors.
a) The load PF
b) The Excitation of the Generator.
Considering the factor a) alone the current may lie in the 1st Quadrant. Power factors as
low as 0.3 may occur which means the angle = (72.5) . That means the vector OI
approaches the + X axis and has a + ve in phase component with the voltage.
Under such circumstances the Generator is perfectly in order and supplies Power to the
Bus. The RPR need not act.

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7.2 2nd Quadrant Operation : Fig 2 .

E
I

X 0
Fig-2

Current leads the Voltage by , which may be due to


1) Capacitance loading
2) Excitation of the Generator.

Considering factor 1) alone , which could be due large capacitances of the cables and
loads may be small on a big generation. The current vector is very close to X and has a
+ ve in phase component with the voltage.
Under such circumstances the Generator is perfectly in order and supplies Power to the
Bus.

The Vector OI may be made to move in the 1st and 2 nd Quadrants by Varying the
excitation of the alternator. The excitation of the Generator may be reduced, but the
supply of steam/water/diesel to the prime mover may be kept up.

If the generator has to deliver Power, the Bus Voltage shall be kept constant. This is done
automatically by the Generator drawing a Leading current and compensating for the
demagnetizing effect of armature reaction even if the load is inductive
Hence even if the load is inductive the generator current will be at leading PF.

The conclusion that can be drawn from the above is that,the generator may operate with
leading power factor, even if the load is inductive when the generator is with low
excitation . It is not necessary for the RPR to operate under this condition.

It is not possible for the relay to discriminate between a leading current due to a
relatively low excitation (as compared with the other generators connected ) or due to
low loads. An another option could be to make the relay to operate under certain angles
of lead. But this is also very difficult as the conditions of load can never be reckoned as
constant. Also the driving parameter for the relay being the current, the angle of lead at
which it will operate will vary with the current.

Hence we can conclude that the relay need not operate with the current vector in
quadrant 1 or 2.

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7.3. 3 rd Quadrant Operation : Fig 3 .

E
+

-X +X
0
I
_

Fig 3

In this we have to realize a system where the busbars are pumping energy into the
generator, which is working as a motor. The power component of current is in phase with
the ve direction of the voltage OE. The alternator doesnt perform its normal functions
and functions as an under excited synchronous motor. This may happen when the input
power (steam, water ,diesel ) fails and the excitation current is low.

7.4 4th Quadrant Operation : Fig 4

E
+

-X +X

I
_

Fig 4

This corresponds to a case of over excited synchronous motor. This case may happen if
the input power to the prime mover fails when the generator was adjusted to give a large
lagging current for an inductive load or to make up for the deficient excitations for other
machines with which the generator under consideration is operating in parallel.

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8. Summary
.
1) Reverse power feeding may happen in case of Generators connected in parallel
or Generators connected to Grid.
2) Reverse Power can happen when the input power (steam, water ,diesel ) fails
and the excitation current is low.
3) Reverse Power can happen if the input power to the prime mover fails when the
generator was adjusted to give a large lagging current for an inductive load.
4) To make the RPR to operate the current vector has to be in 3rd Quadrant or
4thquadrant
5) Reverse Power Operation :
In the case of steam turbines , the reduction of steam flow reduces the cooling
effect on the turbine blades and over heating may occur.
In the case of Hydraulic turbines the damage may be due to water surfing on the
blades due to which an axial pressure may develop on the bearings.
In the case of Diesel engines the damage could be due to insufficient
lubrication.

9. Magnitude of permissible Reverse power :

During Motoring action the Generator starts drawing power , from the system to
feed the losses in the generator and the Prime mover. The total losses as a
percentage of rated output are

Type pf Prime Approximate %


Mover Losses
Steam Turbine 1- 3

Hydraulic 3
turbine

Diesel engine 25 %

Gas turbine 5

These Values apply when the input to the Prime mover is completely cut off .
Therefore the entire energy drawn from the system will be dissipated as Copper Losses ,
Core Losses in the generator, and mechanical losses in the driver and driven combination
We have to determine how large the current will be under Reverse Power condition. It
will be clear that if we consider that the entire losses attributed towards I R ( copper
losses) only , we get the maximum current that will be flow under RP conditions.

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The following example explains a sample calculation.

Eg : Rated current of the Generator =I n


Full Load Output = Pw
% R of the Generator =1%
I 2 R Losses in the Generator = 0.01 Pw
If the RPR is set at 10 % Pw

I 2 R = I 2 ( 0.01 ) = 0.1 Pw
I = 10 In =3.15 In
ie For a machine with % Resistance of 1 % , if the Reverse Power is set at 10 %, the
maximum current that can flow into the machine is 3.15 I n, which is not very high for the
modern machines , for a short duration . However since this 10 % Power also includes
all the other losses, the current will be further less. It is therefore safe to keep the Reverse
Power at 10 % setting.

The Generator currents remain balanced during the motoring conditions also. Hence a
Single Phase Relay is sufficient if the sensitivity is sufficiently high . For large units
additional units in other Phases may also be used in order to obtain redundancy.

When the Generator is working as a motor the small Active Power will be combined with
the Substantial Reactive Power delivered by the machine. Hence the Phase angle errors
for the CT s and PTs supplying the RPR shall be small.

For very large turbo generators , where the reverse power is substantially less than 1 % ,
Reverse Power Protection is obtained by a low Forward Power or Minimum Power
Relay, which are normally set to Trip the machine when the active Power out put is less
than 1 % of the Rated value.

10. Circuit for RPR :

From the discussions at clause 7it can be seen that the Principle on which a RPR has to
act is same as that of the Principle of a wattmeter. A simple 3 Phase RPR connection
diagram is as shown at Fig 5.

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RELAY SELECTION TABLE

The following Table gives some guide lines as to the Relay designations with various
manufacturers. There could be variations in this List. One has to check up with the
Technical information supplied by the respective manufacturer prior to making the
selection.

FUNCTION ANSI ALSTOM ABB AVK L&T OTHERS


/IEEE
CODE
REVERSE 32 P CCUM 21, SPAG 330C, IRP 1, MRP 11
POWER WCD 11 PPX111-R MRP 2-R RW
PROTECTION 1-10

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