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A3-208

CIGRE 2008

AN OPTIMAL DESIGN TOOL OF SF6 GAS CIRCUIT BREAKER TO IMPROVE THE SMALL CURRENT INTERRUPTING PERFORMANCE H. K. KIM K. Y. PARK K. D. SONG J. K. CHONG Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI) Korea

SUMMARY
SF6 gas circuit breaker (GCB) is widely used in high and extremely high voltage power network due to its excellent interrupting capability. This paper presents the optimal design tool of SF6 GCB to improve the capacitive current interrupting performance. The objective function for the optimization is the minimal difference between the withstand voltage and the applied voltage. To obtain the dynamic gas properties, the axisymmetric Euler equation is solved using the finite volume fluid in cell method. Withstand voltage is calculated using the empirical equation which is the function of the gas density and the electric field intensity. To facilitate the optimization process which requires computationally expensive cost, Kriging model is employed as an approximation model. Approximation models have been widely used to replace the simulation codes, especially for the optimal design of complex and large systems. Sequential approximation technique is employed to improve the accuracy of the Kriging model and to reduce the number of real function calls during the approximation model-assisted optimization. Kriging model is adaptively constructed during iterative optimization process using the updated sample data set including the global and local minima and maxima of objective function obtained by the restricted evolution strategy (RES). The RES is run twice to find the peak and valley points of the Kriging model respectively. Among the RES solutions, several points are selected to enter the sample data set and using the updated sample data set, the Kriging model is reconstructed. The developed optimization tool was applied to the design of 145kV GCB interrupter and the usefulness of the tool was verified by the test. It is found that the prediction of breakdown voltage is quite accurate with the error of less than 5% regardless of the interrupter type. For GCB interrupter shape optimization, the design variables are set on the main nozzle surface. It is verified by the test that the optimized GCB interrupter has better interrupting performance than the original model. It can be concluded that with the aid of highly accurate simulation code and efficient optimization tool, it is possible to considerably save the development costs of GCB in terms of time and money.

KEYWORDS
Gas Circuit Breaker, Interrupter, Capacitive Current Interrupting, Withstand Voltage, Approximation Model, Kriging Model, Restricted Evolution Strategy.

kimhk@keri.re.kr

1. INTRODUCTION
Recently it is common to verify the interrupting performance with the computer simulation tools before the real testing of high voltage GCB. The main test duties for GCB development are usually the capacitive current switching (CCS) tests, short line fault tests, and short-circuit tests. For short line fault tests and short-circuit tests, the physical phenomena during the interruption process have not been fully investigated. Therefore, rigorous analysis techniques which can predict these interrupting performances with reasonable accuracy have not been developed yet. Whereas, the prediction of CCS performance can be made quite accurately as the cold gas and electric field analyses can be carried out satisfactorily with the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) package. The breakdown voltage between contacts during the CCS tests can be calculated by the empirical method [1] or the streamer theory [2]. This paper presents the optimal design tool to improve the CCS performance for SF6 GCB. For that purpose, the optimal design tool must be able to predict the CCS performance with an acceptable accuracy. Moreover, the calculation time for CCS performance should be as short as possible because a number of real function calls are required to find the satisfactory (optimal) solution. In the optimization society, approximation models have been widely used to replace the simulation codes which require huge computational cost especially for the complex and large system design. In this paper, Kriging model [3] is employed as an approximation model because this model is known to be able to approximate a complex and highly non-linear function. To reduce the number of real function calls and improve the accuracy of the Kriging model, sequential approximation technique is used. That is, Kriging model is adaptively constructed during optimization process using the updated sample data set including the global and local minima and maxima of objective function obtained by the restricted evolution strategy (RES) [4]. Initial sample points are obtained by the Latin Hypercube Sampling (LHS) method. The RES is run twice to find the peak and valley points of the Kriging model respectively. Among the RES solutions, several points are selected to enter the sample data set. Then, the Kriging model is reconstructed using the updated sample data set. The empirical prediction method [7] of withstand voltage was applied to 145kV puffer type and hybrid type GCB. We performed CCS tests under various arcing times and peak values of the applied voltage conditions and compared the calculated and the measured breakdown voltages. For shape optimization to improve the CCS performance, the design variables are set on the main nozzle surface. It is verified by the tests that the optimized GCB interrupter has much better CCS performance than the original model.

2. CALCULATION OF WITHSTAND VOLTAGE


2.1 Gas Flow Analysis For the analysis of gas flow in the GCB interrupter, CFD technique is widely used considering the moving boundary, shock wave, complicated geometry and so on. In this paper, finite volume fluid in cell method [5] is used to solve the axisymmetric Euler equation. From the CFD analysis, we can get the density and pressure distribution which are used to calculate the withstand voltage. Fig. 1 shows some examples of CFD analysis result. As shown in the figures, very fast gas flow whose Mach number is greater than one is formed around the fixed arcing contact. Shock wave makes the gas density very low, which results in the weak dielectric strength. To validate the CFD analysis, the pressure rise in the puffer chamber was measured and compared with the calculated one. As shown in Fig. 2, calculation result is in good agreement with the measured one.

(a) Mach number (b) Density Figure 1 : Flow distribution from CFD analysis.

(a) 145kV GCB (b) 550kV GCB Figure 2 : Pressure rise in puffer chamber (Cal : calculated, Exp : measured).

2.2 Electric Field Analysis The electric field intensity is calculated by solving the axisymmetric Laplace equation with finite element method. The applied voltage between the contacts is given by (1). Vap (t) = Vmax { 1 cos(2 f (t - Ta)) } , t > Ta (1)

where Vmax is the peak value of applied voltage, f [Hz] is frequency, t [sec] is time, and Ta is arcing time. The reference time for 0 [sec] is the instance of contact separation. 2.3 Calculation of Breakdown Voltage The empirical equation to predict the breakdown voltage is derived from the first breakdown probability which is obtained by the experiment. In that case, breakdown electric field intensity Eb is the function of gas pressure P, E b = A Pn , where A and n are constant related to the geometry and the electric field nonuniformity. Then the breakdown voltage is given in equation (3), Vbd = Eb/Eo = A Pn / Eo , (3) (2)

where Vbd is the applied voltage when breakdown occurs between the electrodes, Eo is the local electric field intensity. For the ideal gas, the gas pressure can be expressed by the gas density through the state equation, and the final equation of breakdown voltage is

Vbd =

a b , Eo

(4)

where a and b are coefficient which should be determined by the experiment.

3. OPTIMIZATION FRAMEWORK
3.1 Approximation Model A. Latin Hypercube Sampling Method To determine the initial sample data efficiently, various design-of-experiments (DOEs) have been developed which attempt to spread sample points around the design space in some appropriate

manner. The popular DOEs in computer simulation-based approximation are factorial design, LHS method, composite central design, orthogonal array, D-optimal design and so on [6]. Among them, LHS method is one of the frequently used DOE in the design and analysis of computer experiments because this method provides good uniformity and flexibility on the size of the sample. B. Kriging Model When the simulations such as FEM become computationally expensive, the number of simulationbased function evaluations required for the optimization should be carefully controlled and approximation models have been widely employed to replace the simulation codes. The frequently used approximation models are polynomial regression method, Kriging model, radial basis function method, artificial neural network and so on [6]. Among them, we employed Kriging model because it is flexible and quite robust in approximating complex multi-dimensional functions, making it well suited for engineering problems. 3.2 Restricted Evolution Strategy for Multi-Modal Function Optimization In this study, the RES is employed as a multimodal function optimization method [4]. The main feature of the algorithm is the separation of neighboring solutions, which is very different from the conventional evolution strategy. In the RES, the evolution range is used instead of the niche radius and it is modified during the optimization process by checking the convergence rate. The method adopts the concept of an elite set, which stores superior solutions with some distance between each other. The members of the elite set are replaced with superior solutions during the evolution. Fig. 3 shows the schematic illustrations to briefly explain the concept of the RES. Fig. 3 (a) shows the initial location and evolution range for each solution. In case of a general evolution strategy, solution 1 and 2 are removed and finally all the solutions approach to the global peak C. On the contrary, in the RES, each solution searches its neighboring local peaks. Hence, solutions 1 and 3 converge to the local peaks B and C, respectively. During the evolution, solution 2 approaches to the same peak B along with the solution 1 and is eliminated from the elite set. When the removed solution 2 is newly generated, it has more chance to be located around the empty peak A which is not explored as shown in Fig. 3 (b).

(a) Initial location and evolution range of each point (b) Final location of each solution Figure 3 : Schematic illustrations of the RES.

3.3 Optimization Framework Using Adaptive Kriging Model The accuracy of Kriging model depends on the number of sample points and their location in the design space. Generally, the larger the number of sample points, the more accurate Kriging model. However, too many sample points require a large amount of computation to evaluate the real cost function. In this study, to improve the accuracy of Kriging model and to reduce the number of real cost function calls, an adaptive approximation technique is employed. The main idea of the proposed technique is that the function shape can be figured out by the peak and valley points of the function and that by running the RES routine twice, the peak and valley points can be found. The main procedure of the proposed optimization framework is as follows:

1) Obtain the initial sample data set using LHS method and evaluate the real cost function value for each sample point with simulation code. 2) Construct the initial Kriging model using the initial sample data set. 3) Find the minima and maxima of the Kriging model by running the RES. The function minimization and maximization are carried out to search the valley and peak points of Kriging model. 4) Add new points to the sample data set including the valley and peak points and evaluate the real cost function value for each added point. 5) Rebuild the Kriging model using the updated sample set. 6) Check convergence using the previous and present optimal solution found by the RES. 7) Repeat 3) - 6) until the convergence criterion is satisfied.

Figure 4 : Procedure of proposed optimization framework.

The points added to the sample data set are selected among the RES solutions using the following fitness value.
Fi = w fi + (1 w) di ,

(5)

where w is the weighting value, fi is the normalized cost function value, and di is the normalized minimum distance between RES solution i and sample points. If w is large, then the point is added at the location of the better function value. If w is small, the added point is located in the uncertain region where the sample points are sparsely distributed. Fig. 4 shows the procedure of the proposed optimization framework which is composed of LHS method, Kriging model and the RES.

4. SHAPE OPTIMIZATION OF GCB TO IMPROVE CCS PERFORMANCE


4.1 Verification of Withstand Voltage Calculation During the interrupting process, if the applied voltage between the contacts is larger than the withstand voltage, dielectric breakdown occurs and circuit breaker fails to perform the capacitive current interruption. Therefore, the larger the difference between withstand voltage and applied voltage is, the higher interrupting capability GCB interrupter has. In that sense, to predict the CCS performance of GCB, we introduce the following performance index: V (r , z , t ) Vap (t ) (6) Fbd = min bd 100 [%] Vap (t ) where Vbd(r,z,t) is the withstand voltage at position (r, z) calculated by (4), Vap(t) is the applied voltage between the contacts, and t is the time measured from current interrupting instance.

If Fbd is greater than zero, then the withstand voltage is always higher than the applied voltage. And the higher Fbd is, the better CCS performance is. To validate the calculation method of withstand voltage, 145kV GCBs were tested. In the test, the arcing time and the peak value of the applied voltage between the contacts were varied and the breakdown voltage was recorded. Fig. 5 shows the geometry of GCB interrupter used in the test. In the figure, (a) is a puffer type and (b) is a hybrid type GCB interrupter. Table I shows the CCS performance index calculated by (6) and test results with regard to the arcing time and the applied voltage peak. For the puffer type GCB interrupter of table (a), in case of Vpeak of 345kV, the calculated Fbd is 0.1%, which means the successful interruption with the margin of 0.1%. However, in the real test, breakdown was observed. Except this case, the predicted CCS performance shows good agreement with the test result. For the hybrid type GCB of table (b), in case of Vpeak of 351kV, the calculated Fbd is 2.7%, which also indicates the successful interruption with the margin of 2.7%, but the breakdown was observed. Fig. 6 shows the comparison of the waveform of applied voltage and the calculated withstand voltage in case of puffer type GCB interrupter. In case of Vpeak of 327kV, Vbd is always higher than the applied voltage with considerable margin, which means the GCB interrupter has sufficient dielectric strength against the applied voltage. Whereas, in case of Vpeak of 374kV, Vbd is lower than the applied voltage in some period, which predicts breakdown. In the test, a breakdown was observed in this case. In summary, the calculation method of withstand voltage adopted in this paper could quite accurately predict the result of CCS test.

(a) Puffer type

(b) Hybrid type Figure 5 : Test model of 145kV GCB.

(a) Puffer type GCB

Table I : Calculated Fbd and test result. (b) Hybrid type GCB

800 700 600 voltage [kV] 500 400 300 200 100 0 0 5 time [ms] 10 15 Vap Vbd

800 700 600 voltage [kV] 500 400 300 200 100 0 0 5 time [ms] 10 15 Vap Vbd

(a) Arcing time = 3.4ms, Vpeak = 327kV (b) Arcing time = 3.25 ms, Vpeak = 374 kV Figure 6 : Comparison of applied voltage (Vap) and withstand voltage (Vbd) for puffer type GCB.

4.2 Design of Nozzle Shape to Improve CCS Performance As explained above, the larger Fbd value is, the better CCS performance is. Therefore, Fbd itself is a cost function (objective function) and the optimization problem can be expressed as follows: Maximize Fbd , subject to Fbd > 0 .

(7)

In (7), the condition Fbd > 0 is necessary for the successful interruption. The design variables for the optimization are shown in Fig. 7. X1 and X2 control the shape of nozzle upstream and X3 adjusts the nozzle throat length, and X4 and X5 modify the shape of nozzle downstream. Fig. 8 shows the optimized nozzle shape for each type of 145kV GCB interrupter. For both models, the upstream and downstream nozzle shape is changed considerably compared with the original model. However, the nozzle throat length of the optimized GCB interrupter is almost the same as that of the original model. The test result for the optimized puffer type GCB interrupter is shown in Table II. In Fig. 9 (a), we can see that the optimized GCB interrupter has the improved CCS performance. The withstand voltage of the optimized GCB interrupter is always higher than the applied voltage between the contacts and Fbd value should be significantly larger than that of the original model. As shown in Fig. 9 (b), at the tip of the fixed arcing contact where the density becomes low due to the very fast gas flow, the minimum density of the optimized GCB is higher than that of the original one, which contributes to the improved CCS performance.
X1 = [ -4 X2 = [ -3 X3 = [ -3 X4 = [ -5 X5 = [ -5 4 ] mm 3 ] mm 3 ] mm 5 ] mm 5 ] mm

Figure 7 : Definition of design variables.

(a) Optimized shape of puffer type GCB (b) Optimized shape of hybrid type GCB Figure 8 : Comparison of original and optimized nozzle shape.

Table II : Fbd and test result for optimized GCB (puffer type).

(b) Density at the tip of fixed arcing contact (a) Withstand voltage (Tarc = 3.25 ms, Vpeak = 374 kV) Figure 9 : Comparison of original and optimized GCB.

5. CONCLUSION
In this paper, the optimization tool to improve the capacitive current switching capability has been developed and successfully applied to the 145kV puffer type and hybrid type interrupter. The withstand voltage is predicted by the empirical method with the computed SF6 gas density and electric field data. It is found that the prediction of breakdown voltage is quite accurate with the error of less than 5% for both puffer and hybrid type GCB. It is also verified that the optimized GCB interrupter has better capacitive current switching capability than the original one. It is expected that the automatic design tool with an efficient optimization algorithm can be widely used for the development of other high voltage equipment.

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