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BREAKDOWN STRENGTH ANALYSIS OF THE TRANSFORMER INSULATION OIL


DUE TO DIFFERENT STANDARDS

Conference Paper · August 2013

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BREAKDOWN STRENGTH ANALYSIS OF THE TRANSFORMER
INSULATION OIL DUE TO DIFFERENT STANDARDS
1* 1 1 1 1
H. Akca , O. Arikan , C. Kocatepe , C. F. Kumru and R. Ayaz
1
Yildiz Technical University, Department of Electrical Engineering, Istanbul, Turkey
*Email: < hakca@yildiz.edu.tr>

Abstract: There are many equipment such as transformers, high voltage cables,
insulators, breakers, etc., work in power systems under high voltages. The insulation oils
are used in such systems to provide the insulation and cooling respectively for high
voltages and temperature rises in conductors. These kinds of oils should be qualified in
terms of insulation and should have some certain features for power system stability.
Therefore, suitability of the physical, chemical and electrical properties of the insulation
oils is specified with standard tests. These tests are performed according to the IEC
60156, ASTM D1816 and ASTM D877 .In this study, breakdown voltage variation of
insulation oil which is used for high voltage equipment is investigated for particular
working conditions. In experimental study, there are two types of insulation oils which are
non-aged and aged insulating oils. Breakdown voltages of these insulation oils are
measured for different voltage rising speed mentioned in three related standards. In
addition, two types of electrodes, which are specified in standards, are used in all
breakdown voltage measurements. The results of this study showed that different types
of electrodes, rising speed of applied voltage and the quality of insulation oil have a
significant effect on the insulation breakdown voltage.

1 INTRODUCTION In a study where sphere-plane electrode system


and standard lightning impulse voltage used
Transformers and breakers on the power systems (positive, 1.2 / 50 µs), breakdown voltages of
are needed insulating materials for insulation and silicone and ester basis oils are compared to
cooling. Insulating oils must have some electrical, environmental friendly oils. The change of
physical and chemical properties for insulation. breakdown voltage depends on temperature is
Impurities in the insulating oils can change examined [4].
breakdown resistance of oils. There are several
studies about these subjects in the literature. In the work made by H. Miyahara et al, they
investigated breakdown voltage of silicon oil which
Breakdown voltages of synthetic ester, natural contains filler particles in vertical sphere - plane
ester and mineral oils are investigated considering electrode arrangement and horizontal sphere -
the effect of moisture. Breakdown resistances of sphere electrode. In the study, standard lightning
esters are tried to estimate with weibull and gauss impulse voltage was used as test voltage [5].
statistical analyzes. Spherically shaped brass
electrodes which have 1 mm gap is used and Swarno and H. Sutikno introduced the temperature
voltage increase rate is 0.5 kV/s for the tests [1]. effects on breakdown voltage of oil at 2 kV/s
voltage increasing rate. Sphere - sphere and
In a study by Wang et al, they studied on three needle - plane electrode arrangements used in the
different oil samples which are syntetic oil, ester- experimental study. Additionally, partial discharge
based oil and mineral oil. Two different samples level is examined related to voltage polarity
are used as pure and refined. These tests were according to IEC 60156 [6].
made according to ASTM D1816 standard and 1
mm gap between the electrodes and changes of In the study by R. Sarathi and his friend,
breakdown voltage is examined according to rates breakdown voltage and partial disharge
of impurity in samples [2]. measurements of insulation oil is carried out in
vertical sphere – sphere electrode arrangement
Guerbas et al, made some tests according to IEC according to the temperature and frequency
156 with 2 kV/s increase rate of voltage. Point- changes [7].
plane electrode in horizontal position is used for
tests. The gap between planes was changed from J. Singh et al investigated the parameters of
1 mm to 12 mm. During this process, change of insulation oil as breakdown voltage, moisture,
breakdown voltage was examined depend on resistivity and interfacial tension during an ageing
position of barrier which is interposed between the process [8].
electrodes [3].
In the work made by Y. Lv et al, the effect of nano
fluid on breakdown strength of insulation oil is
examined. The measurements are performed
according to the IEC 60156 with standard lightning
impulse voltage [9].

There are some studies in literature which


examined breakdown voltage value according to
the breakdown time and number [10-11]. Figure 2: Cylindrical and spherical electrodes

In this study, cylindrically and spherically shaped In the study, two types of oil samples are used as
electrode systems used horizontally. Voltage rate follows.
of rise, voltage form and ambient conditions are
specified according to IEC 60156, ASTM D1816 Sample 1: Non-aged oil sample
and ASTM D877 standards. Measurement results
obtained are analyzed and discussed. The results Sample 2: Aged oil sample
obtained from the experimental measurements are
analyzed to evaluate the breakdown quality of The results obtained are given in section 3.
insulation oil.
3 EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS AND
2 EXPERIMENTAL SETUP ANALYSIS

Voltage rising rate and electrode types has to be Spherical and cylindrical electrode types are used
considered in the tests which are done to specify in all measurements. The gap between the
the dielectric parameters of oils. For this reason, electrodes is set to 2.5 mm for all tests. Voltage
tests have to be done within the scope of increasing rate was changed in each test.
standards. In IEC 60156 standard, sphere - sphere Depending on the voltage increasing rate for a
and cylindrical electrodes are used in the tests fixed electrode gap, breakdown voltages are
done to specify starting point of partial discharge compared for non-aged and aged oil sample. In
and disruptive voltage. Also, distance between addition, breakdown strengths of insulating oils are
electrodes is 2.5 mm and rising rate of voltage is 2 examined for the same electrode arrangements.
kV/s [12]. For the same purpose, rising rate of the The measurements are realized under 0.5 kV/s, 2
voltage is 0.5 kV/s in ASTM D1816 standard and 3 kV/s and 3 kV/s voltage increasing rate.
kV/s in ASTM D877 standard [13-14].
The measurements are carried out 4.5 minutes
Tests are performed by “HiPotronics” insulation oil after filling the test cell with oil sample. Six
test device which is shown in Figure 1. This device breakdown strength values are measured for each
could supply three voltage rising rate according to voltage-raising rate and the average values are
the IEC 60156, ASTM D1816 and ASTM D877 calculated. Between the measurements, 1.5
standards. Additionally, the device makes it minutes is waited.
possible to perform test in different geometries as
cylindrical electrode (left) and spherically shaped 3.1 Non-aged oil sample with sphere to sphere
electrode (right) shown in Figure 2. electrode arrangement
In this study, a non-aged oil sample for testing
purposes is discussed. Sphere-sphere electrode
system was used to determine the breakdown
strength and voltage. Gap between the electrodes
during the measurements was fixed at 2.5 mm. Six
measurements are obtained for the 0.5 kV/s, 2
kV/s and 3 kV/s voltage-raising rate. These values
are given in Figure 3 and average values of results
Figure 1: Insulation are given in Table 1.
Table 2: Average test results of non-aged oil for
cylindrical electrode system

Voltage Electrode VBreakdown EBreakdown


Rising Rate Gap at 2,5 mm strenght
(kV/s) (mm) (kV) (kV/mm)
0.5 2.5 51.17 20.47
2 2.5 57.65 23.06
3 2.5 56.28 22.51

It is seen from the results in Table 2 that the


breakdown voltage is influenced by the voltage
increasing rate. At 2 kV/s voltage increasing rate,
the breakdown voltage is increasing to 57.65 kV
Figure 3: The relation between breakdown voltage from 51.17 kV. However, at 3 kV/s voltage
and breakdown number increasing rate, the breakdown voltage value is
slightly decreasing.
Table 1: Average breakdown voltage and strength
results of non-aged oil for sphere-sphere electrode 3.3 Aged oil sample with sphere to sphere
system electrode arrangement
During this test, used transformer oil sample for
Voltage Electrode VBreakdown EBreakdown
Rising Rate Gap testing purposes is discussed. Sphere-sphere
at 2,5 mm strenght
(kV/s) (mm) (kV) (kV/mm) electrode system was used to determine the
0.5 2.5 60.37 34.42 breakdown strength and voltage. Gap between the
2 2.5 70.20 40.01 electrodes during the measurements was fixed at
3 2.5 74.42 42.42 2.5 mm. Six measurements are obtained for the
0.5 kV/s, 2 kV/s and 3 kV/s voltage-raising rate.
These values are given in Figure 5 and average
It can be easily seen from Table 1 that, breakdown values of results are given in Table 3.
voltage of oil is increased with the rising rate of
voltage.

3.2 Non-aged oil sample with cylindrical


electrode arrangement
In this test, a non-aged oil sample and cylindrical
electrode system is used to determine the
breakdown voltage. Between the electrodes, the
gap is fixed to 2.5 mm during the measurements.
Six measurements are obtained for the 0.5 kV/s, 2
kV/s and 3 kV/s voltage rising rate. These values
are given in Figure 4 and average values of results
are given in Table 2.

Figure 5: The relation between breakdown voltage


and breakdown number for aged oil sample

Table 3: Average test results of aged oil for


sphere-sphere electrode system

Voltage Electrode VBreakdown EBreakdown


Rising Rate Gap at 2,5 mm strenght
(kV/s) (mm) (kV) (kV/mm)
0.5 2.5 44,10 25.14
2 2.5 59,88 34.13
3 2.5 55,30 31.52

Figure 4: The relation between breakdown voltage


and breakdown number for non-aged oil sample As a result of this test is based on the average
values of Table 3, breakdown strength increases at
higher voltage rising rate than 0.5 kV/s rising rate.
3.4 Aged oil sample with cylindrical electrode Table 5: Comparison of aged and non-aged
arrangement transformer oil breakdown voltage
In this study, aged or non-aged oil sample for
Voltage
testing purposes is discussed. Cylindrical electrode Rising Rate
Sphere*Sphere Cylindrical
system is used to determine the breakdown Electrode Electrode
(kV/s)
strength and voltage. Gap between the electrodes 0.5 26.90 % 26.87 %
during the measurements is fixed at 2.5 mm. Six 2 14.70 % 21.30 %
measurements are made for the 0.5 kV/s, 2 kV/s 3 25.69 % 16.31 %
and 3 kV/s voltage-raising rate. These values are
given in Figure 6 and average values of results are
given in Table 4. 4 CONCLUSION

In this study, breakdown characteristic of non-aged


and aged transformer oils was investigated under
different voltage and electrode type conditions.
Results obtained from experimental study are
given in tables and figures.

Results are showed that the value of breakdown


voltage increases with increasing voltage rising
rate in general. When non-aged oil compared to
used oil, it is clearly seen that breakdown voltage
level of aged oil is lower.

Additionally, for cylindrical electrode geometry, the


breakdown voltage value is decreased for both
non-aged and aged insulation oil.
Figure 6: The relation between breakdown voltage
and breakdown number for aged oil sample When the breakdown voltages of non-aged and
aged oils are compared, there is difference
Table 4: Average test results of used oil for between observed values in excess of the 20%. It’s
cylindrical electrode system clear from the result that the aging has an essential
impact on the insulation level.
Voltage VBreakdown EBreakdown
Electrode Although the same experimental procedure was
Rising Rate at 2,5 mm strenght
Gap (mm) applied to the non-aged oil, breakdown strength
(kV/s) (kV) (kV/mm)
0.5 2.5 37.42 14.97 measurement data obtained from spherical
2 2.5 45.37 18.14 electrode are greater than the values obtained
3 2.5 47.10 18.84
from the cylindrical electrode. The reason of this
difference is that the different electrode types have
different electrical field. Therefore, even if the
According to the Table 4, the breakdown voltage sample and experimental procedure are same, the
value is increasing with the increased voltage breakdown voltages become different.
rising rate.
5 REFERENCES
3.5 Decreasing percentage of non-aged and
aged transformer oil
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