Mitsubishi Electric Achieves Successful Fault Current Interruption using 160kV DC Circuit Breaker

October 15, 2019

Mitsubishi Electric Corporation announced that its 160kV mechanical HVDC circuit breaker (mechanical DCCB) prototype has successfully interrupted the peak current of 16kA that reproduces a fault in a real system within 7 milliseconds: a testing requirement specified in PROMOTioN (Progress On Meshed HVDC Offshore Transmission Networks) project. The testing was conducted as part of the EU-funded research project PROMOTioN at the KEMA high power laboratories of DNV-GL, an international testing and certification service based in The Netherlands.

Following the successful test, Mitsubishi Electric is now proceeding commercialization of the DCCB. The proven reliability of its components is expected to help to develop stable, reliable and economical dc grid.

Background and Test Results

HVDC transmission is a lower cost alternative to AC transmission and benefit from lower power loss over long distances. It is effective to connect offshore wind farms to onshore power grids in Europe, especially in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. In recent years, the requirement for higher reliability and lower cost DCCBs has risen, driven by the need to expand HVDC transmission networks and ensure more continuous and stable operation.

AC current can be interrupted at current zero existing every half cycle, but in case of DC interruption, current zero have to be artificially created, since it lacks natural current zero. In addition, convertors are used to convert AC to DC prior to transmission, and it is therefore necessary to interrupt any abnormal current before the convertors shut down in cases of voltage drops occurring during any faults. High-speed interruption within a few milliseconds is therefore required for DCCBs. Mitsubishi Electric has successfully interrupted DC current with its mechanical DCCB prototype, which is capable of creating zero current artificially within such miniscule timeframes.

Features of Mechanical DCCB

  1. 1)High-speed abnormal current interruption
    • High-speed fault current interruption is realized through the adoption of electro-magnetic repulsion drives in the circuit breaker.
  2. 2)Low conduction losses
    • Mitsubishi Electric’s concept is high efficiency HVDC transmission is realized by transmitting the current by physical means only, which involves minimal conduction loss, contrasting with the use of semiconductors.
  3. 3)Low cost and small footprint
    • Inexpensive mechanical contact less susceptible to operating conditions is used in contrast to interruption methods using semiconductor elements. Without the need for clean room and cooling systems, low cost small footprint protection facilities for HVDC transmission can be realized.

Source

Related Articles



Editor’s Pick: Featured Article

Weidmüller’s u-control 2000: The Automation Controller

Weidmüller’s u-control 2000: The Automation Controller

Weidmüller’s scalable engineering software, u-control 2000, adapts individually to your requirements. And, the u-control is powerful, compact and fully compatible with Weidmüller’s I/O system u-remote. This article looks at what makes u-control the heart of your automation.

Programmable logic controllers (PLCs) are one of the main components of any automated system. A typical control system has inputs, outputs, controllers (i.e., PLCs), and some type of human interaction with the system, a human machine interface (HMI), for example.

Read More



Latest Articles

  • How the OS33C Safety Scanner is Making Workplaces Safer and More Efficient

    June 18, 2024 In today’s fast-paced and demanding industrial environments, ensuring workplace safety and operational efficiency is paramount. However, customers often face a range of challenges that hinder their productivity and increase costs. Enter the OS33C Safety Scanner, a revolutionary solution that addresses these issues head-on, making workplaces safer and more efficient than ever before…. Read More…

  • Ensure Food Safety With Clean Compressed Air

    June 11, 2024 Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP), which fall under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), stipulate the cleanability and cross-contamination standards that food processing plants must follow, ensuring food is safe for consumption. One easy way to meet cGMP and FSMA guidelines is to upgrade your pneumatic systems with proper air filtration systems…. Read More…