Wide-Area Protection Qualifications

Power system protection is a well-established field of study that deals with the protection of the system through the isolation of faulted transmission equipment from the rest of the system. Protection systems are an integral part of the Power System and are designed to monitor conditions, detect abnormalities and react in an autonomous fashion to isolate problems in fractions of a second. The design of these protection systems is a challenging undertaking because reacting at the wrong time or in the wrong way can exacerbate the problem rather than prevent it. As a result of advances in software and computing power, there are commercial software-based tools available in the market today that make it possible to model a power system, simulate an array of problem scenarios and study how the protective schemes will react. Quanta Technology has developed and executed a process to diminish the challenges with successful utilization of these tools:

• Errors in system modeling can skew or invalidate the results.
• These tools generate such large volumes of data that interpreting the results in a non-automated fashion is impractical, especially when the system to be analyzed consists of more than a few transmission lines.
• Reaching a conclusion on whether the system passed or failed the simulation, as well as assessing the risk and prioritizing the remedial actions is difficult because of data overload.
• Comprehensive documentation of the work and the results is a critical activity that is mandated by regulatory entities such as the National American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) for some types of studies.
• Protection expertise required to identify and correct issues identified by the available tools.