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POWER SYSTEM DESIGN FOR

HIGH-POWER ELECTRIC SMELTING AND MELTING FURNACES


T. Ma, G.J. Bendzsak and M. Perkins
Hatch Associates Ltd., 2800 Speakman Drive,
Mississauga, Ontano, Canada L5K 2R 7

ABSTRACT
High power electric smelting furnaces operate typically at power levels in the 30 to 60 MW range,
and frequently, the furnace dynamic load swings can have a significant impact on the generation
equipment, transient stability of the power system and the power quality to other interconnected
loads.

Power systems for these furnaces are designed with the objectives of increasing the average -
furnace power levels while meeting utility load restrictions, disturbance limits and equipment
performance limitations.

System design considerations include generation frequency swings, bus voltage fluctuations,
harmonic filtering, furnace and power system controls. A systematic design approach consists of
estimation of furnace load fluctuations, dynamic numerical simulations of furnace and power
system equipment , followed by simulation and analysis of process controls.

Reprinted from:
The Proceedings of the International Symposium
on Non-Ferrous Pyrometallurgy:
Trace Metals, Furnace Practices and Energy Efficiency
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
August 23-27, 1992
31st Conference of Metallurgists
of the Metallurgical Society of CIM

INTRODUCTION
High power electric smelting furnaces have to satisfy operating restrictions dictated by the utility.
Specialized power system compensation equipment such as tuned harmonic filters, primary
reactors or controlled reactive power compensation may be required. Electrical separation of the
furnace bus from other loads may be necessary. These increasingly stringent measures arise
when the furnace load becomes a large portion of the generation capacity on the line. In the
situation where furnace load is supplied from captive (dedicated) generation, the furnace load can
approach 80 % of the generation capacity. These circumstances underline the importance of
designing and operating the power system and furnace load as a Combined System.

Furnace load instabilities originating from both arc behaviour and from furnace operating upsets
are discussed from process and electrical perspectives. The interactions of these disturbances
with furnace power supply equipment and generation are presented.

This paper presents a method of analyzing the operation of large electric furnace loads on a power
system. The paper characterizes process specific furnace loads according to power conversion
mechanisms and heat transfer. Simulation techniques for evaluating performance of the furnace
arc, power generation, control systems, as well as corrective measures are described. Application
of simulation results to power system design is discussed.

CHARACTERIZATION OF SMELTING FURNACE LOADS


Most electric smelting furnaces contain a molten bath of conductive metal or matte on the hearth,
underlying a relatively resistive slag layer onto which unmelted charge mix is added. There are
four distinctive types of electric smelting operations, characterized primarily by the mechanisms of
power conversion to heat and transfer of the liberated heat to the furnace charge:
➤ Immersed Electrode
➤ Open Arc
➤ Shielded Arc
➤ Submerged Arc

In practice, the four methods are distinguished by the operational positions of the electrode tips
relative to the molten bath and the presence and depth of unmelted charge cover surrounding the
electrodes. These features, along with the associated secondary circuit electrical parameters
typical for a 40-50 MW furnace, are summarized for each furnace type in Table I.
Table I – Types of Smelting Furnaces

Immersed Open Arc Shielded Arc Submerged


Electrode Arc
Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4
Electrode Tip Position Immersed in Above Bath Above Bath Above
Relative to Slag Bath bath Bath
Charge Cover at Electrodes Bath Covered Open Around Charge Cover Deep Charge
or Open Around Electrode Tips Around/Over Cover Over
Electrodes Electrode Tips Electrode Tips
Furnace Resistance Slag Bath Arc + Slag Arc + Slag Mainly Arc
Resistance resistance Resistance
Only
Resistance Distribution R Arc R Arc R Arc R Arc
≅0 >3 = 3 to 5 >5
RBath RBath RBath RBath

Power Liberation I 2 RBath I 2 ( RBath + R Arc ) I 2 ( RBath + R Arc ) I 2 ( RBath + R Arc )


Heat Transfer to Charge Convection by Arc Radiation & Arc Radiation & Arc Radiation &
Hot Circulating Convection via Convection Convection
Slag Currents Hot Furnace Direct to Charge Direct to Charge
Freeboard Banks / Coke Bed
Typical Electrical Parameters (sec’dry)
Resistance per Electrode (mohms) 5-10 5-15 10-40 1-2
Reactance per Electrode (mohms) 2-2.5 3-5 3-5 ~1-2
Sec. Volts/Electrode 100-300V 100-500V 500-700V ~75V
Sec. Current kAmps 20-50 20-50 10-30 ~100
Power Factor 0.97-0.98 0.8-0.9 0.95 ~0.7
Current /Power Swings Small Swings Large Swings Large Swings Moderate
Swings
About Avg. Levels Infrequent Frequent Frequent Moderate
Electrode Speed Slow Very Fast Fast Very Slow
Regulation Required <50 cm/min >150cm/min 100-150 cm/min < 50 cm/min

Immersed Electrode -Operation


To assist an understanding of the specific electrical features of each furnace type, it is useful to
examine the behaviour of electrode resistance with electrode tip position, as illustrated in Figure 1.
In the IMMERSED ELECTRODE mode, the electrode tips are immersed into the slag bath, which
forms the only significant resistance in the circuit, and power is liberated solely by Joule heating:

PE = I 2 RBath

The liberated energy superheats the slag locally establishing circulating flows that distribute the
heat to the charge banks (Figure 2). Electrical conversion to heat energy is very stable. Bath
resistance fluctuations and the associated power swings are very small. Low speed electrode
regulation is sufficient for power set point regulation. The power factor is high, typically above 0.95.
The merits of immersed electrode smelting are found in these important features. This smelting
mode suffers from limited hearth power densities. Large furnace sizes are required to control
erosion of the sidewall refractories by the hot circulating slag currents.

Figure 1 – Load Resistance versus Electrode Tip Position

Figure 2 – Immersed Electrode Operation and Figure 3 – Open Arc Operation


The slag bath resistance is dependent primarily on the slag resistivity, which is dependent on slag
composition and temperature, electrode size and the immersed depth of the tips into the slag. For
a given operation, the resistance increases as the electrode tip is moved upward from the slag-
metal interface to the slag surface, as shown in Figure 1. This simple resistance to immersion
depth relationship provides the basis for regulating the furnace power. The transformer secondary
voltage tap is set at the desired value and the electrodes are raised or lowered to maintain the set
point resistance or impedance. Control of load resistance essentially controls furnace power
through the relationship:

V x PF 2
PE = ( )
RBath

where PE = Electrode Power


V = Electrode Voltage to Bath
PF = Power Factor
RBath = Bath resistance per Electrode

Arcing Operation
Referring to Figure 1, it is noted that the resistance begins to rise more rapidly as the electrode
tips approach the slag surface, mainly due to the reduced contact area of the pointed tips with the
slag bath. Micro-arcing between the electrode and the slag commences before the electrode tip is
free from the slag surface. This condition is commonly referred to as "Brush Arcing". Steady
operation in this zone is generally undesirable since it loses the inherent stability of the
IMMERSED mode, does not provide the desired resistance boost needed for high voltage levels
and suffers from the instabilities derived from variable electrode tip geometry and the wave motion
of the slag surface.

As the electrodes are raised above the brush arc zone, the rate of resistance increase with
electrode position assumes a much steeper slope, as shown in Figure 1, reflecting the onset of
stable arcing conditions. Energy liberated in the high voltage arcs is transferred either directly to
the charge in the case of Shielded-Arc operation (Figure 4) or a combination of direct transfer and
freeboard re-radiation in the Open Arc mode (Figure 3). Since transfer of the arc energy to the
charge does not rely on superheated slag recirculation, the main cause of sidewall refractory
attack, much higher power densities can be used than are possible in Immersed Electrode
smelting. Since Shielded-Arc smelting results in more moderate freeboard and off-gas conditions
than are achieved in the Open-Arc mode, it should be adopted, wherever conditions such as gas
evolution rate, charge mix size, porosity and sintering temperature of the banks permit.

The arc resistance increases with arc length, but not in an invariant manner. In practice, the
voltage drop across an arc increases virtually proportionally to the arc length over a fairly wide
range of current levels. Typically, the arc voltage gradient is about 15 volts per cm of arc length, in
both the open and shielded-arc modes. Since the rate of resistance change with electrode position
is much steeper in the arcing mode than with immersed electrode - operation, the furnace
electrical parameters are much more sensitive to arcing mode upsets in electrode position relative
to the bath surface.

This paper excludes discussion of low-resistance submerged arc smelting operations (ferroalloy,
pig iron, phosphorous) where the electrodes are deeply buried in a conductive charge mix, with
micro-arcing from the tips to a floating coke bed.
Figure 4 – Shielded Arc Operation

Figure 5 – Ideal Arc Voltage and Current Waveforms


Figure 7 – Furnace Power Supply Equipment 6 Electrode Furnace

Figure 9 – Frequency Versus time Captive Generation 44MW Furnace Tip

Arc Instabilities
A major electrical instability introduced by arcing arises from the requirement to re-ignite the arc
each half cycle, e.g. 120 times per second for 60 Hz power. If the arc fails to ignite, current flow is
interrupted in the electrode, causing a 33 % to 50 % reduction in furnace power and excessive
levels of power unbalance and negative sequence current. Re-ignition difficulties and the
corresponding electrical instabilities are more severe in the open arc mode since hot plasma is
swept from under the tips into the freeboard, thereby leaving a much colder, less conductive
environment for arc re-ignition. Arc re-ignition produces reactive power (MVAR) swings on the
power system which cause supply voltage fluctuations. These disturbances, referred to as voltage
flicker [2], range in frequency from 1 to 20 hz, resulting in objectionable light flicker. By contrast, in
the shielded arc mode, the environment in the arc crater under the electrode is contained and
protected from the furnace atmosphere. Re-ignition is much easier and hence power instabilities
are considerably reduced. This benefit of shielded arcing is evident from the reduced incidence of
resistance and power fluctuations seen in Figure 4 compared to the open arcing data shown in
Figure 3. The improved stability of shielded arcs allows the use of higher voltage levels.
The ignition voltage requirement of the arc introduces a phase delay angle between the arc current
and supply voltage, denoted by e in Figure 5. This phase shift is referred to as an equivalent flare
reactance" and is manifested as a reduction in furnace power factor. The arc reactance follows the
relationship:

X arc = K 1 - Rarc

where K 1 is empirically measured and is process specific.

The non-sinusoidal arc current of Figure 5 contains higher order frequencies, known as harmonic
components. Both utility grids and captive generation are sensitive to current harmonics for the
following reasons:
➤ Distortion of the supply voltage waveform to other customers.
➤ Amplification of supply voltage distortions due to resonance at the power factor correction
capacitors of other customers [1].
➤ Interference with communication circuits and sensitive electronic equipment.
➤ Derating of power system equipment due to increased harmonic current losses.

Operation Load Disturbances


In addition to the power system disturbances resulting from arcing, instabilities also result from
normal operating upsets themselves such as power ramping and unbalances. Start up and shut
down power ramp rates are normally governed by the rate at which the generation can be
regulated to meet the load.

Furnace unbalanced operation due to electrode breakage and rebaking, or tapping temperature
adjustments is governed by the power supply and motive load negative sequence capability.

Lastly, furnace full load trips result in an immediate step mismatch between load and generation.
This step mismatch results in frequency oscillations as the generator controls adjust to the loss of
load.

THE FURNACE POWER SUPPLY


Smelting Furnace Electrode Configurations
The majority of large electric furnaces are either three electrode round furnaces or six-electrode-in-
line rectangular furnaces. Furnace operation and dynamic control is influenced by the number of
electrodes. A six electrode furnace has an additional degree of flexibility by virtue of individual
furnace transformer tap changer control as well as individual regulation on each of the six
electrode columns. This provides for a wide range of power control flexibility in furnace operations.
The three electrode furnace differs in that the three furnace transformer secondary windings are
electrically connected to each other by secondary bus connections made either in the transformer
vault or near the electrode clamps. This close electrical phase coupling of the three electrode
furnace causes a current fluctuation in one electrode to be reflected into the other two electrodes.

Following the loss of arc conditions in a six electrode furnace, the total power is reduced by 33%.
For the same conditions, the total power reduction of a three electrode furnace is 50%. A six
electrode furnace therefore presents reduced MW fluctuations, and power unbalance to the power
supply system during loss of arc.
The Furnace Transformer and Power Supply
The operating ranges of furnace electrical parameters are established by the transformer
specifications. The transformer voltage tap range, currents and furnace load range are graphically
displayed using a Power/Voltage/Current (PVI) diagram. A typical PVI diagram for a 3 electrode
furnace is shown in Figure 6. An operating point of 50 MW, 32 kA, 1042 volts, 18 mohm is
indicated for a 72 MVA furnace transformer. This diagram also displays both the immersed
electrode operating region as well as high voltage arcing operation.

A typical power supply arrangement for a 6 electrode furnace powered by 3 single phase furnace
transformers is shown in Figure 7. The key equipment items with power control capability are the
furnace transformer tap changer, and the electrode regulation. The transformer voltage tap
changer enables a range of discrete secondary voltage levels as shown in the PVI diagram. The
electrode regulator controls the load resistance, and hence the power level, by raising or lowering
the electrodes.

GENERATION, TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION OF FURNACE LOAD


Generation
The electrical transmission system connecting generation to the furnace load is shown in Figure 8.
Furnace load can be supplied from either Captive Generation or a Utility Grid. A utility grid consists
of multiple generation sites, each site consisting of two or more synchronous generators.

A summary of high power electric furnace loads supplied from both Utility grids and captive
generation is shown in Table II.

Table II – Power Supply to Furnace Load

Load Type Project Fce Generation PF Electrode Fault Fault Level


Correction Resistance Level Utility
Fur. Ty. Supply
Pri.
MW Type MW MVAR mohm MVA MVA
Captive Power System
Open Arc Iscott 2x45 Gas 3x88 SVC 2x65 5 600 1200
Steam +100 SWC30
MW
Grid
Open Arc Steel Plant 1x17 Diesel 4x12 SVC+45/- 5 157 240
10
Shielded Arc Falcondo 1x80 Steam 3x70 None 135/2 660 800
Shielded Arc PT Inco 3x55 Hydro 3x60 None 15 700 950
UTILITY GRID 45
Cerro Matoso 1x48 Grid None 5 600
Ipsco 2x40 Grid Synchrono 5 334 1340
us
Condenser
s 120
MVAR
Sysco 1x60 Grid SVC 1x40 5 900 2100
Immersed Falconbridge 2x21 Grid None 35/2 300 1500
electrode
Immersed Cyprus 1x40 Grid None 12/2 370 1180
electrode
Immersed Impala 1x30 Grid None 15/2 700 2000
electrode
Figure 6 – Power/Voltage/Current (PVI) Curves 3 Electrode Furnace

Figure 8 – Power System Block Diagram

The traditional approach has been to obtain smelter power from the closest utility grid provided it
has the required capacity and acceptable reliability. In new greenfield projects, an adequate utility
supply is often not available. Consequently, installation of a local generation plant is required. The
choice of generation type depends mainly on the relative supply costs of competing energy
sources. The potential for using waste heat from the smelter to augment the energy supply as well
as waste heat from the generation plant in the smelter should also be examined.
A brief discussion of the main types of captive generation follows.

Hydroelectric Generation
The stored water energy is directed through penstocks to turbines which supply mechanical
energy to the synchronous generators. The turbine wicket gates control the mechanical energy to
the turbine according to the speed control set by the governor. Fast furnace load sheds result in
water flow diversion from the turbine to a bypass valve. Frequency swings of up to 15% are
possible. Start Up/Shut Down power ramps are controlled by the turbine wicket gates. The wicket
gate and bypass valve also provide protection from the furnace load dynamics. Hydroelectric
generation operates at low speeds and high inertia, and is well suited for furnace load dynamics.

Diesel
The generators are driven by diesel engines coupled to large flywheels, which provide additional
inertia for dynamic load changes. Fast diesel throttle control and a specially designed fuel
turbocharger provide a proper response for full load rejections. Diesel generation, operating at low
speeds of 400 rpm is a solution for the supply of furnace power.

Steam Generation
Steam is produced in a coal, oil or gas fired boiler, and is admitted to the turbine through a main
stop valve and downstream throttle valves, freely expanding through the turbine and exhausting as
low pressure steam to a condenser. In the event of a furnace load shed, over speed protection is
furnished by the main stop valve, limiting over speed to 6%. Load regulation is provided by the
steam control valves and the speed regulator. Steam turbines operate at speeds of 3000 rpm and
are mechanically more sensitive to furnace dynamic load changes.

Gas Turbines
Gas powered turbines have been used for the supply of open arc furnace load. In this instance,
the system frequency excursions were limited to 0.4% or 0.24 hertz, requiring a thyristor-switched
ballast resistor (static WATT control-SWC) for power system stabilization [3].

Generation Controls
The generating plant supplies two power components to the furnace; the MW or real power
component that is used for smelting and the MVAR or inductive component, which is the stored
energy in the magnetic fields of the power transformers and secondary bus. The MW and MVAR
furnace power requirements are both met by the synchronous generators. For a steady furnace
operation, balances for both the MW and MVAR loads exist between the generation and the
furnaces. A furnace load disturbance, however, upsets the balances.

A transient power system MW mismatch is first drawn from the rotating inertia of the generation
machines, resulting in a speed change, and corresponding frequency swing. Generation speed -
governor controls then react to restore system frequency to the set point value by regulating the
prime mover mechanical power. The speed control loop is typically slow, in the order of 5 to 30
seconds. Significant frequency excursions may result, as seen in the case of hydroelectric captive
generation. Where tighter frequency limitations must be met, additional MW compensation is
required.

Reactive power MVAR mismatches resulting from arc instabilities cause a system voltage change.
The generation voltage regulator senses the change and adjusts the internal field of the generator
to re-establish set point voltage. In doing so, the MVAR output of the generation is matched to the
corresponding new furnace MVAR requirements. This voltage regulation control loop has a
response of 0.5 to I second and is generally too slow for open arc flicker control. In this situation,
an additional source of controlled MVAR compensation may be required. Static VAR
compensation (SVC), consisting of fixed harmonic filters and a thyristor-controlled reactor (TCR)
may be appropriate. Other solutions involve raising the utility fault level with additional generation
and transmission. The fault level is a measure of the short circuit current at the point of interest
and is expressed as the short circuit volt-amperes supplied by the generating sources. Table II
provides typical fault levels for furnace installations. In general, increasing fault level represents a
"stiffer" power supply which reduces the impact of arc-generated voltage flicker and harmonic
voltage distortion to other customers. System fault levels normally increase with increasing supply
voltage. Consequently, many smelter operations are supplied at voltages of 69 kV and higher.

The next section is devoted to the analysis and correction of furnace load disturbances on the
power system.

ANALYSIS, CORRECTION AND CONTROL OF POWER SYSTEM DISTURBANCES


Proper selection and specification of the power equipment for a furnace load requires the detailed
analysis of furnace load profiles operating on selected generation and transmission system
configurations. The analysis involves the examination of furnace steady state and dynamic loads,
solution of the furnace supply circuit equations, simulation of appropriate generator and regulator
control systems, and simulation of corrective compensation equipment.

Presently available software packages, running on engineering work stations, are sufficiently
powerful for power system simulations [4]. Application of furnace resistance and arc models,
equipment control systems and reactive power compensator schemes [5] can be incorporated
within the software packages.

A summary of furnace load disturbances, power supply standards and corrective measures is
presented in Table III. Technical selection of corrective measures is assisted by power system
studies. The results of representative case studies for furnace power supply analyses covering
voltage flicker, frequency fluctuations, arc harmonic filtering and furnace unbalance are presented
below.
Table III - Correction of Furnace Load Disturbances

Standard Spec Corrective Measures


Arc Based Distrubances
Furnace MVAR swings cause UIE 2 0.28 % at 7 ➤ Separate the furnace and
excessive voltage flicker which hz motive bus
disrupts other sensitive loads on the (sinusoidal) ➤ Increase Power Supply Fault
system. Level
➤ MVAR Compensation
Equipment
➤ Series Buffer Reactors
➤ Restrict, Change Operations

Furnace MW swings cause Individual ➤ Separate Motive Load Bus


excessive frequency swings which Utility ➤ Electrode Regulation Control
damage motive load drives Requirements ➤ Generation Controls
➤ Dynamic MW Compensator

Excessive Arc Harmonics IEEE Std. 519 ➤ Harmonic Filters

Operations Based Disturbances


Start up and shut down load can be Utility 2-10 ➤ Computer Assisted Control
delayed by scheduling of water or MW/Minute
steam

Sustained unbalanced furnace load 2% Voltage ➤ Increase unbalance ratings of


occurring due to electrode breakage Unbalance. rotating machines
or other sustained furnace operation Derate ➤ Automated control of furnace
with unbalanced furnace power. Motors to phase power set points.
95% of
Nameplate

CASE 1 VOLTAGE FLICKER


Open arc furnace operation on a Utility grid was measured and calculated with and without
operation of MVAR compensation by a thyristor-controlled reactor (TCR) and fixed capacitor
scheme [6].

The furnace, power system, and arc parameters, denoted in Figure 7 are:

Generation GRID
Fault Level at Incoming Bus 2100 MVA
Furnace Operating Power 60 MW
Power Factor 0.9
Total Fixed Capacitors 110 MVAR
TCR Rating 140 MVAR
Equation (1) kl 0.20
MEASURED DATA WITH TCR
Flicker Voltage Magnitude at 7 hertz 0.3 % - 0.4 %
Flicker Voltage Magnitude at 20 hertz 0.4 % - 0.8 %

Initial GRID MW and MVAR power flows were calculated using a Gauss Seidel load flow pro-ram
[7]. An empirical arc model was developed which includes the described arc instabilities,
measured arc reactance, and measured harmonic current source generation for open arcs.
Numerical calculations were carried out using a commercial software package [4]. Simulation
calculations verifying SVC correction of low frequency flicker and amplification of high frequency
flicker are in progress.

CASE 2 FREQUENCY DYNAMICS


Furnace load trips on a captive power system were causing excessive frequency fluctuations of +
15 %. Calculations were required to determine the magnitude and ramp rate of the MW
compensation needed to reduce the frequency fluctuations to 6% for a 50 MW load shed.

The furnace, power system, and arc parameters, denoted in Figure 7 are:

Generation 190 MW Captive


Fault Level at Incoming Bus 850 MVA
Furnace Operating Power 52 MW Shielded Arc
Power Factor 0.92
Equation (1) kl 0.217
The calculated frequency swings for both uncompensated and compensated furnace load trip are
shown in Figure 9.

A calculated ramp rate of 10 MW/sec, immediately following a furnace trip reduces the frequency
swing to 6%. Process control and equipment modifications are presently in progress to implement
the above strategy. This design parameter was obtained from numerical simulation of the
generator electromechanical and control loop differential equations representing the machine
equations, voltage regulator and speed governor control, a shielded arc model and electrode
regulator equations. The simulation software was written using commercial software [8].

CASE 3 REVIEW OF HARMONIC FILTER DESIGN


A performance review of harmonic filters for open arc load and thyristor-controlled reactor
operation was carried out.

The furnace, power system, and arc parameters, denoted in Figure 7 are:

Generation 45 MW CAPTIVE
Fault Level at Incoming Bus 240 MVA
Furnace Operating Power 27 MW Open Arc
Power Factor 0.7
2nd Harmonic Filter 18 MVAR
3rd Harmonic Filter 12 MVAR
5th Harmonic Filter 15 MVAR
TCR Rating 55 MVAR
Equation (1) k1 0.20
Harmonic filters are designed to provide a current sink for arc and TCR generated harmonics,
thereby reducing the magnitude of the net harmonic injection into the utility grid. The filters also
minimize parallel resonance of the power factor correction capacitors, and limit the harmonic
voltage distortion of the utility bus [9].
The source harmonic currents and the calculated net harmonic injection into the generation are
provided below.

Harmonic Arc & TCR Harmonic Residual Utility Attenuation


Number Generation Harmonic Current Factor
I3 Iu I3/Iu
% of Fundamental % of Fundamental
2 1.7 0.22 7
3 3.3 0.2 17
4 1.3 0.2 6
5 3.5 0.2 17

The filters reduced the total harmonic distortion factor [10] to 4.6% on the interconnected rolling
mill bus, thereby meeting the maximum distortion limit of 5.0%.

The calculations involve representing the power system with equivalent harmonic impedances and
solving for harmonic filter currents and residual utility currents at each harmonic frequency.

CASE 4 UNBALANCE COORDINATION OF FURNACE AND MOTIVE LOAD


Both immersed six electrode load and large synchronous motors are supplied from a common bus
connected to a Utility grid. The maximum sustained furnace unbalance acceptable to the motive
load operation was calculated. The calculations were used to set the negative sequence relay
settings.

The furnace, power system, and arc parameters, denoted in Figure 6 are:

Generation GRID
Fault Level at Incoming Bus 11 80 MVA
Furnace Operating Power 18 MW Immersed Electrode
Power Factor 0.97
Motive Load 3x5OOO HP
The furnace transformer connection was grounded WYE with an insulated transformer neutral
cable. Maximum furnace power with 4 electrode operation (two out of service) is 12 MW, resulting
in a bus voltage unbalance of 1.2%.

Furnace unbalance limits are normally given' by either the negative sequence rating of the
generation, or the NEMA bus voltage unbalance of 2% [10]. Analysis of these limits involve
calculation of furnace load negative sequence current, by multiplying the furnace three phase
currents, in vector format by a transformation matrix.

CONCLUSIONS
The design of electrical power systems for smelters incorporating one or more high power electric
furnaces must take into account:
➤ Furnace operating characteristics, whether immersed electrode, open or shielded arc.
➤ Furnace power load relative to generation capacity.
➤ The method and source of power generation.
Arc-based disturbances can be corrected enabling high power furnace operation on weak power
supplies. Appropriate power system calculations are required for the design of the power supply
system. Each furnace power supply application requires individual evaluation to establish the
parameters at the interface between generation and furnace load.

REFERENCES
1. J. Arrillaga, D. A. Bradley, P. S. Bodger, "Power System Harmonics", Wiley, New York,
1985, Chapter 4.

2. R. Seebald, J. Buch, D.J. Ward, "Flicker Limitations of Electric Utilities", IEEE Transactions
on Power Apparatus and Systems, Vol. PAS 104, No. 9, Sept. 1985, 2627-2631.

3. D.J. Chee-Hing, F.M. Wheeler, "The New ISCOTT Meltshop, In Trinidad", Electric Furnace
Conf. Proc., 1981, 39, 48-56.

4. V. Brandwaj n, " Electromagnetic Transients Program (EMTP) Revised Rule Book, Version
2.0", EPRI EL-6421-L, Vol. 1, Research Project 2149-4.

5. Hatch Associates, "Static VAR Compensation of Voltage Flicker from Electric Arc
Furnaces", CEA Project 042-T-818, in progress.

6. R. M. Mathur, Ed., "Static Compensators for Reactive Power Control", CEA-Cantext,


Winnipeg, Canada, 1984.

7. Roettger Eng. Co., "LOADFLOW 2.2", Naples, Florida, May 1989.

8. The Math Works, Inc., "MATLAB", MA, USA, 1985 - 1990.

9. M.A. Pesonen, "Harmonics, Characteristic Parameters, Methods of Study, Estimates of


Existing Values in the Network", Electra, No. 77, Pg- 35-53.

10. NEMA Standard MG1-20.55.