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Guide for electrical design engineers

Power Quality

Zbigniew Hanzelka
AGH-University of Science & Technology

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

U 12

I 23=I C
I 12

I 1=I 12-I 31

U 23
I 31=I L

I 2=I 23-I 12
I 3=I 31-I 23
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U 31
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1. Introduction
When the limit values of unbalance factor, specified in standards are exceeded, the use of symmetrizatin systems
is required. A symmetrizator should not cause significant active power losses during operation; it implies that the
symmetrization process shall be carried out by means of reactive elements (LC) or using active methods (power
electronic systems).

2. Symmetrization of the load currents

The further analysis, using the method of symmetrical components, concerns the system node in the configuration
as in Figure 1. An asymmetrical load (A), symmetrical load (S) and compensator (K) are connected to substation bus-
bars of phase voltage U, supplied from three-phase symmetrical system.


I 1K I 3K
E1 U1
U3 (S)
I 1A I 3A


Fig. 1. Diagram of the analysed node

Since the system of electromotive forces (E) and the supply line are symmetrical, it is assumed that the voltage
unbalance at the load terminals is caused by the asymmetry of the load currents. It means that, if the asymmetry
of the load currents is eliminated, the voltages at the point of the load connection form the symmetrical three-phase
system. This is the case of the supply system protection, and the loads connected to it, against the asymmetry caused
by asymmetrical currents of the load (A) and resulting asymmetrical voltage drops across the equivalent impedances
of supply system (on assumption identical in all phases: Z 1 = Z 2 = Z 3 ).
An obvious conclusion from Figure 1 is that the voltage unbalance at PCC, caused by the load asymmetry, can be mitigated
by reduction of the phase equivalent impedances (short-circuit impedances) i.e. by increasing the short-circuit capacity at
the point of load connection, what in practice means connecting the load to the point of the system of higher voltage.

3. The „natural” symmetrization

The first and the most basic operation of the symmetrization process is the arrangement of the actual load
connections between the system phases, in such a way that the current unbalance factor (and hence the voltage
unbalance factor) was the smallest possible value. In case of connecting a single load to the network, the level
of unbalance (measured by the current unbalance factor for zero- or negative-sequence component) does not depend
on phase-to-phase or phase-to-neutral voltage, where the load is connected. Similarly, when connecting two single-
element loads, the level of unbalance does not depend on which voltages the loads are connected. However, when
these loads will have a different character then, in terms of the “natural” symmetrization (i.e. the symmetrization,
which does not require any additional elements), it is important to take into account the character of the loads and
phase angles of the voltages they are connected to.

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

For the system of three loads on nominal voltage 380 V and powers, respectively: P1 = 7.22 kW, Q1 = 7.22 kVAR (ind.);
P2 = 7.22 kW, Q2 = 7.22 kVAR (cap.); P3 = 7.22 kW, Q3 = 0 delta-connected, supplied from three-phase 3x380/220V
network, determine the arrangement of their connections to the network phases, ensuring minimum value of the
current unbalance factor.

From the load active and reactive power the elements of its equivalent admittance can be determined, i.e.: the
susceptance (B = 2 ) and conductance (G = 2 ) (Fig. 2).

UN (P, Q) UN B G

Fig. 2. The load (P - active power, Q - reactive power) and its equivalent admittance
P1 Q1 7.22 kW 7.22 kVAR
Y 1A = G1A + jB1A = 2
−j 2
= 2
−j = (0.0
05 − j 0.05)S
U U (380 V ) (380 V )2
P2 Q2 7.22 kW 7.22 kVAR
Y 2 A = G2 A + jB2 A = 2
+j 2
= 2
+j = (0.0
05 + j 0.05)S
U U (380 V ) (380 V )2
P3 Q3 7.22 kW 0 kVAR
Y 3 A = G3 A + jB3 A = 2
+j 2
= 2
+j = 0.1S
U U (380 V ) (380 V )2

Variant 1 – Loads connected as in Fig. 3:

I 1A
Y12 A
Y 12 A = Y 1A
Y 23 A = Y 2 A 2
Y 31A = Y 3 A I 2A
Y23 A
I 31A
I 3A
I 23 A
Fig. 3. Variant 1 of load connection

I (2) a2 Y 12 A +Y 23 A + aY 31A
The current unbalance factor: kI % = 100% = 100% = 68.3%
I (1) Y 12 A +Y 23 A +Y 31A

1 3 1 3
a = exp( j1200 ) =− + j a2 = exp( j1200 ) =− − j
2 2 2 2

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Three-wire network voltages Three-wire network currents

400 40

300 30

200 20

100 10
Voltages [V]

Currents [A]
0 0

-100 -10

-200 -20

-300 -30

-400 -40
0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
Time [s] Time [s]

Fig. 4. Voltage waveforms: Example 1 – Variant 1 Fig. 5. Current waveforms: Example 1 – Variant 1

See Figures 4 and 5.

Variant II - Y 12 A = Y 1A Y 23 A = Y 3 A Y 31A = Y 2 A

I (2) a2 Y 12 A +Y 23 A + aY 31A
The current unbalance factor: kI % = 100% = 100% =18.3%
I (1) Y 12 A +Y 23 A +Y 31A

This is the minimal value of the current unbalance factor, which can be obtained connecting the impedances
to phase-to-phase voltages in various configurations. This configuration has been taken for further considerations (Fig. 6).
Three-wire network currents



Currents [A]




0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
Time [s]

Fig. 6. Waveforms of currents: Example 1 – Variant 2

In cases, where the negative component cannot be sufficiently reduced solely by means of the more uniform
distribution of the loads between phases, compensators are used. The purpose of the compensation systems is usually
the elimination or mitigation of the negative- and zero-sequence component of currents at the point of connection
of asymmetric load. Such process is called symmetrization.

4. Compensator/symmetrizator
In the three wire MV systems, usually operated as the isolated neutral point or compensated systems, asymmetrical
loads are connected on phase-to-phase voltages. In such case, there is no zero-sequence component of currents,
therefore the symmetrization resolves into elimination or mitigation of the negative-sequence component. The
LV systems are typically four-wire networks, with grounded neutral point, thus the negative-sequence and zero-
sequence components are present. The symmetrizator (K) is connected in parallel to the asymmetric load (A) (Fig. 1).
The symmetrizator causes the currents I1K, I2K, I3K, which adding to the load currents I1A, I2A, I3A, result in the balanced
system of the source currents I1, I2, I3, according to the equation:
I1 = I1A + I1K I 2 = I 2 A + I 2 K = a2 I 1 I 3 = I 3 A + I 3K = aI1 (7)

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

As the currents drawn from the network form a balanced system, therefore the negative-sequence and zero-sequence
components are equal zero:

1 1
I ( 2 ) = (I1 + aI 2 + a2 I 3 ) = 0 I ( 0 ) = ( I1 + I 2 + I 3 ) = 0 (8)
3 3

The load to be balanced can be represented in general as a circuit of six elements in the star/delta connection (Fig. 4),
where individual elements are connected to phase-to-neutral, as well as to phase-to-phase voltages. The impedances
Z 12 A , Z 23 A , Z 31A Z 1A , Z 2 A Z 3 A (or admittances Y 12 A , Y 23 A , Y 31A Y 1A , Y 2 A Y 3 A ), which in the diagram represent the actual
load, can be functions of time.

1 2 3 0

Z 12 A (Y 12 A ) Z 1 A (Y 2 A )

Z 23 A (Y 23 A ) Z 2 A (Y 2 A )

Z 31A (Y 31A ) Z 3 A (Y 3 A )

Fig. 4. General diagram of the three-phase unbalanced load

To establish the rules of compensation and symmetrization, the values of specified impedances should be assumed
constant, and generally different from each other. This does not exclude considerations on their variability in time.
These impedances can be regarded as a “representation” of the time-varying load, but only in the specific, selected
instants of time – the sampling instants. The set of such constant values of impedances represents the load at discrete
instants of time.
The compensation of asymmetric load will be understood as the compensation of reactive part of the positive-
sequence symmetrical component (reactive power compensation for the fundamental frequency) and of the zero-
sequence component (for three-phase, four-wire systems) and negative-sequence component for the fundamental
frequency. Among various possible methods, the inductive-capacitive systems are of particular importance. Their
practical applications are certain solutions of static follow-up compensators.

5. The compensator/symmetrizator parameters

The symmetrization and compensation of the fundamental harmonic reactive current is a process, which in practice
consists in connecting in parallel to the asymmetric load the asymmetric reactive elements (reactors, capacitors)
of such values as to fulfil the conditions (9):

I (A2 ) + I (K2 ) = 0 I (A0 ) + I (K0 ) = 0 Im I (A1) + I (K1) = I0 (9)

where: I (A0 ) , I (A1) , I (A2 ) , I (K0 ) , I (K1) , I (K2 ) are symmetrical components of the asymmetric load and compensator (index (K))
currents, respectively for the zero- (0), positive- (1) and negative-sequence component; Im I (A1) denotes the reactive
part of the positive-sequence of the load current component (imaginary part in complex numbers notation); I0
is the value of reactive current, which is the measure of the load non-compensating level permitted in the supply
conditions by electrical power supplier. Thus, according to the presented notation, the processes of the reactive
current compensation and symmetrization (for the zero-sequence and negative-sequence component) have been

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For the load as in Fig. 4, the relations, describing the values of the negative- and zero-sequence symmetrical
components can be written as follows (according to (8)):
⎡1 ⎤
( )
I (A2 ) = U⎢ (Y 1A + aY 2 A + a2 Y 3 A )− a2 Y 12 A +Y 23 A + aY31A ⎥


I (A0 ) = (Y + a2 Y 2 A + aY 3A )
3 1A

If the expressions (10) are not identically equal zero, and the asymmetry level is inadmissibly high, the load symmetrization
is needed and can be made by connecting a symmetrization-compensating device with elements B1K B2K , B3K , connected
to the phase-to-neutral voltages and B12K B23K , B31K , connected to the phase-to-phase voltages. The problem resolves into
finding the compensating susceptances, which in connection with the admittances to be compensated will constitute
a symmetric load. The relations, where the parameters of symmetrizator/compensator are expressed as a function
of the equivalent impedances (admittances) of the load to be compensated/symmetrized, will be presented further in
this paper. This is particularly useful when designing a symmetrizator. The symmetrizator parameters can be expressed
as a function of other quantities, which describe a compensated load, i.e.: the current symmetrical components, values
of phase currents or powers, instantaneous values of phase voltages and currents, etc.

6. Symmetrization of a star-connected load with neutral conductor

– elimination of the zero-sequence symmetrical component
In this case the process of compensation comprises of two stages. The first one concerns the elimination of the
zero-sequence symmetrical component – elimination of the current in neutral conductor. The configuration in Fig. 5
has been taken for further considerations; it is distinguished by the minimum value of the current unbalance factor
(the values of elements as in the EXAMPLE 1).

I 1A Y 2A
I 2A Y 1A

I 3A Y 3A

Fig. 5. Three-phase four-wire network - star-connected load


U1 = 220 V U 2 = a2 220 V U 3 = a220 V

I1A = U1Y 2 A = 220⋅(0.05 + j 0 , 05) = (11+ j11)A

I 2 A = U 2 Y 1A = (−15.026 − j 4.026 )A

I 3 A = U 3 Y 3 A = (−11− j19.052)A

The current in neutral conductor: I N = 3I ( 0 ) = I1A + I 2 A + I 3 A = (−15.026 − j 26.026 )A

where I ( 0 ) is the current zero-sequence symmetrical component. The negative-sequence symmetrical component:
I (A2 ) = (I1A + a2 I 2 A + aI 3 A ) = (1.342 + j 2.325)A

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

The positive-sequence symmetrical component: I (A1) = (I1A + aI 2 A + a2 I 3 A ) =14.667 A

I (A2 )
The current unbalance factor: kI % = 100% = 50%
I (A1)

I1 I 1A Y 2A
I2 I 2A Y 1A

I3 I 3A Y 3A


Fig. 6. The elimination of the zero-sequence component (EXAMPLE 2)

Supply network currents Supply network currents

[A] [A] 40

20 20

0 0

-20 -20

-40 -40
0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
[s] [s]
current in neutral conductor
current in neutral conductor
[A] 0.02
[A] 40




-40 0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
[s] [s]

Fig. 7. Waveforms of currents: EXAMPLE 2 – before Fig. 8. Waveforms of currents: EXAMPLE 2 – after
the elimination of zero-sequence component the elimination of zero-sequence component
The elimination of the current zero-sequence component is performed by means of the two-element symmetrizator
in the example configuration as in Fig. 6.

Supply network currents:

I1 = U1(Y 2 A + jB1K ) I 2 = U 2 (Y 1A + jB2K ) I 3 = U3 Y 3A

The condition for the current in neutral conductor to become zero takes form:

I1 + I 2 + I 3 = 0

Reactive part of neutral current: Im( I1 + I 2 + I 3 ) = 0 and
Active part of neutral current: Re( I1 + I 2 + I 3 ) = 0
Substituting the numerical values:
0.05 - 0.0683 + 0.866B2K - 0.05 = 0 and 0.05 + B1K – 0.0183 – 0.5B2K + 0.0866 = 0

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Hence: B1K =−0.0789 S B2K = 0.0789 S

Y Σ1 = Y 2 A + jB1K = (0.05 − j 0.0289 )S
Y Σ2 = Y 1 + jB2K = (0.05 + j 0.0289 )S
Y Σ3 = Y 3 + jB3K = 0.1S
I1 = U1Y Σ1 = 220⋅(0.005 − j 0.0289 ) = (11− j 6.358 )A
I 2 = U 2 Y Σ2 = (0.006 − j12.705)A
I 3 = U 3 Y Σ3 = (−11+ j19.052)A
I1 + I 2 + I 3 ≅ 0
The current zero-sequence component has been eliminated (Fig. 8).

7. Symmetrization a three-wire load

7.1. Symmetrization of a delta-connected load

and symmetrization compensation
of the admittance of the reactive part of
Y23A the load admittances

G23 A G31A G31A − G23 A

B12K = −B12 A + − + + B0 = −B12 A + B0 +
3 3 3

G12 A G31A G31A − G23 A

B23K = + −B
B23 A + + B0 = −B23 A + B0 +
3 3 3

G12 A G23 A G31A − G23 A

B31K = − + + −B31A + B0 = −B31A + B0 +
3 3 3 (11)

compensation compensation symmetrization of the load

and symmetrization and symmetrization
of the admittance of the admittance
Y12A Y31A

In practice, the susceptances of a static compensator perform both processes simultaneously, that means
symmetrization and reactive current compensation and then the resulting values of the susceptance are defined
by (11), where B0 represents the permissible level of non-compensation. As it results from (11), the three susceptances
that are necessary for reactive current compensation and symmetrization can be expressed through real and
imaginary components of the load admittance. The first elements of the right side of the relation (11) represent
the components of the compensation susceptances, necessary for the compensation of the imaginary part of the
adequate load admittance. The second element represents the components of the compensator that are necessary
for the symmetrization of the real parts of the load admittance. These relations clearly indicate that the process
of compensation can also be treated as an activity concerning each of the interphase load admittances separately.
E.g. for the load Y12A compensation of the imaginary part is achieved through parallel connection of a susceptance (-B12)
followed by symmetrization of the remaining part of such a single interphase load by connecting the symmetrizing
susceptances respectively: (G12A/ 3 ) for the voltage U12 and (-G12A/ 3 ) for the voltage U31. The compensation process
of such a load with its indication diagrams has been presented in Fig. 9. For a symmetric system of supply voltages
of positive sequence, such a circuit is equivalent to three star-connected resistors, each of them having a conductance

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

The above considerations illustrate the well known Steinmetz rule of symmetrization, according to which any single-
phase active load (or active-reactive one, after its equivalent susceptance has been compensated), connected e.g.
between phases 1-2 (Fig. 9), can be symmetrized by means of reactive elements LC of such values, that the currents
fulfil the relations (12).
I23 = I31 = I12 A (12)
The obtained relations (11) transform any three-phase asymmetric load into the symmetric, resistive or resistive-
inductive load with a defined level of reactive current. For a symmetric system of supply voltages of positive sequences
the generated circuit is equivalent (for B0 = 0) to three, star connected resistors, each having a conductance value
G = G12A + G23A + G31A.
The condition for the compensator elements selection can also be expressed as a function of the phase reactive
powers of an asymmetric load:

Q1A + Q1K = Q2 A + Q2K = Q3 A + Q3K = Q0 (12)

Q1A, Q2A, Q3A - the load phase reactive powers,
Q1K, Q2K, Q3K - the compensator phase reactive powers,
Q0 - assumed non-compensating level.

For the compensator delta-connected elements, the interphase reactive powers can be determined with respect to
the load phase reactive powers, according to the relations:

Q12K =−Q1A − Q2 A + Q3 A + Q0
Q23K =+Q1A − Q2 A − Q3 A + Q0 (13)
Q31K =−Q1A + Q2 A − Q3 A +Q

I1 I1
1 1

I 12
G 12 I 12
I 31=I L
2 2 1 G
I2  12
WL 3
G 12
WC = I 23=I C
I3 = 0 3
3 3

(a) (b)

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U 12

I 23=I C
I 12

I 1=I 12-I 31

U 23
I 31=I L

I 2=I 23-I 12
I 3=I 31-I 23

U 31

Fig. 9. (a) A single-phase system before the symmetrization;
(b) single-phase system with the symmetrizator;
(c) phasor diagram, which illustrates the process of symmetrization
For the loads configuration as in the EXAMPLE 1 – Variant II, susceptances of the delta-connected symmetrizator/
compensator are:

B12K =−B12 A − (G23 A − G31A ) = 0.0211S
B23K =−B23 A − (G31A − G12 A ) = 0 S
B31K =−B31A − (G12 A − G23 A ) =−0.0211S

The sign „+” preceding the susceptance denotes its capacitive character, the sign „-„ the inductive character.
The capacitance of the capacitor connected between phases 1-2 is determined from the relation:
B12K 0.0211S
C12K = = ≅ 67.2 μ F
2 π f 2⋅ π ⋅50 Hz
The inductance of the reactor connected between phases 3-1 is determined from the relation:
1 1
L31K = = ≅150 mH
2 π fB31K 2⋅ π ⋅50 Hz ⋅0.0211S

The load and compensator are shown in Fig. 10. After connecting the compensator/symmetrizator:

I1* = I12
* *
− I 31 = ( 43.89 + j 0.001)A ≅ 43.89 exp( j 00 )A

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

I 2* = I 23
* *
− I12 = (−21.945 − j 37.988 )A ≅ 43.87 exp(− j1200 )A

I 3* = I 31
* *
− I 23 = (−21.945 + j 37.987)A ≅ 43.87 exp( j1200 )

The phase currents of supply network constitute the three-phase symmetrical system.

I 12*
I 1* I 12 A

Y12 A B12 K I 31A

Y31A B 31K
I 2* I 23 A

Y23 A B 23K *
I 31

I 3* I 31

Fig. 10. Delta-connected asymmetric load with the symmetrizator

Three-wire network voltages



Voltages [V]




0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
Time [s]

Three-wire network currents




Currents [A]




0 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.1
Time [s]

Fig. 11. Voltage and current waveforms (EXAMPLE 3)

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7.2. Star-connected asymmetrical load

The symmetrization of a star-connected load is analysed after star-to-delta transformation. Further procedure of the
symmetrizator parameters selection is analogical as in section 7.1.

8. Static compensators
Reactive power static compensators are widely used in transmission and distribution systems, cooperating with
medium and large power, rapidly variable loads, which are the most disturbing for the electric power system. Static
compensators can perform various tasks, such as compensation of the fundamental component reactive power,
symmetrization and mitigation of voltage fluctuations (flicker). Also some active filters configurations have a capability
of symmetrization.

8.1. Static VAR compensators

The purpose of a compensator (with control and measuring system) is to measure adequate electric quantities
of the load and generate in the compensator such currents, that the resultant load: compensator – compensated load,
as seen from the supply network, was symmetrical, and the fundamental harmonic reactive current drawn from the
network did not exceed the value permitted in the supply conditions.
Generally, static compensators are the systems, which comprise reactors and/or capacitors controlled by means
of semiconductor circuits.
They can be treated as the values of susceptances, controlled according to the needs of compensation/symmetrization.
Thyristors in these systems are used as switches or phase-controlled elements. In practice various solutions
of compensators are applied. Among the most often used compensators is the FC/TCR compensator with fixed
capacitor and controlled (variable) reactor current.

8.1.1. Compensator/symmetrizator FC/TCR

So-called FC/TCR circuits are the most commonly used static VAr compensators/stabilizers in industry. They are
composed of a Fixed Capacitor (FC) connected in parallel to a Thyristor-Controlled-Reactor (TCR). FC is most commonly
a passive filter, filtering the harmonic/harmonics of a load and/or of the TCR. This solution is an example of the indirect
compensation method in which the sum of the basic (1) TCR current harmonic – ITCR(1) and the load reactive current
– IO(1) is constant, and equals the FC current – IFC(1) (Fig. 12a). The TCR current waveform for three sampled control
angles α is shown in Figure 12b (single-phase circuit). The control angle (with respect to the positive voltage zero-
crossing) and the basic current harmonic of TCR can vary in each supply voltage half-cycle, within the range of values
α ∈( , π ) .
With the increase of the angle α the fundamental harmonic of the reactor current decreases, what is tantamount to
the increase of its equivalent inductive reactance for this harmonic and to the decrease in the fundamental harmonic
reactive power, drawn by the reactor. The fundamental harmonic of the reactor current is expressed by the formula:

ITCR(1) (α ) = 3UBK = (IK (1) − IFC (1) ) = [2( π − α ) − sin 2( π − α )] (14)

where: α – control angle of the switch T thyristors, IFC(1) – capacitor current, ITCR(1)(α) – reactor current (fundamental
harmonic), Im - the reactor current amplitude for α = . Thyristor are fully conducting for α = π/2. BK is the controlled
susceptance of the TCR step, its value is controlled by changing the conduction angle of thyristors. The resultant
compensator current ik(t) is the sum of the capacitor and reactor currents:

ik (t ) = iFC (t ) + iTCR (t ) (15)

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

If the current in the reactor branch is equal zero (α = π), then the compensator feeds reactive power to the supply
network and its current has a capacitive character. When thyristors are fully conducting, and the reactor power
is greater than the capacitor power, the compensator draws reactive power and its current has an inductive character.
The compensator current is controlled from IFCmax to ITCRmax in a continuous manner. The disadvantage of this system
is generation of the current harmonics, which results from the phase control of thyristor switch (Fig. 12c).
In the three-phase configuration (Fig. 13a) the single-phase TCR’s (as in Fig. 12) are delta-connected in parallel with
fixed capacitors; together they constitute a triangle of equivalent phase-to-phase susceptances for the supply network
(Fig. 13b). Their values vary independently and continuously as a result of changes in the control angles (α12, α23, α31). This
way, the circuit implements the Steinmetz procedure in order to compensate and symmetrize the three-phase load.

Fig. 12. (a) Conceptual diagram;

(b) TCR current waveforms;
(c) harmonics amplitudes per unit of basic current component amplitude

I 12K
I 12L (α 12)

α12 I 12C B 12K

2 I 31L ( α31) I 31K

I 31C B 31K
α31 I 23K
I 23L (α 23)

B 23K
α23 I 23C

(a) (b)
Fig. 13. Diagram of FC/TCR static compensator

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8.1.2. TSC/TCR (Thyristor Switched Capacitor/ Thyristor Controlled Reactor)

In this configuration a capacitor bank is divided into the steps, switched by means of thyristor AC switches, according
to the compensation/symmetrization needs. Synchronization of the instant of switching with respect to the supply
voltage waveform guarantees elimination of overvoltages and inrush currents, normally associated with capacitor
switching. Also reduced are the values of current high harmonics, as related to the FC/TCR structure of the same
nominal power.

8.1.3. STATCOM
The newest solutions of compensating systems are the STATCOM devices, based on AC/DC converters. The STATCOM
compensator can be considered as a controlled voltage source (VSI inverter in IGBT or GTO technology) connected
to the power supply system through the reactors (Fig. 14), or as an inertialess, three-phase synchronous machine,
whose phase voltages – their amplitude, phase and frequency – are independently controlled. The reactive power/
current flow is controlled by means of the voltage amplitude control. Due to the independent control in each phase of
the system, the compensator enables voltage symmetrization by elimination of the negative-sequence component.
The relationship between the values and phase angles of the supply network voltages (Ubus) and the compensator
output voltages (UVSC) (before and after the reactor Xr – Fig. 14) determines the value and character (inductive or
capacitive) of the compensator current (power). At the zero phase shift between voltages Ubus and UVSC, only reactive
current flows. When Ubus < UVSC the current is capacitive, for Ubus > UVSC the current is inductive (Fig. 15). This way the
compensator can be a source or a load of reactive power. The STATCOM compensators are characterized with the
following basic features:
• they can simultaneously perform combine functions of reactive power compensation, load symmetrization
and filtering of harmonics,
• do not require use of passive components; their overall dimensions are several times smaller than those
of SVC compensators of analogical power,
• compared to the TSC/TCR and FC/TCR system they have better dynamic properties,
• due to the development in power electronics their prices show a declining tendency.
i i
ux ux

u bus

u bus u bus
u vsc u vsc u vsc

u bus < u vsc u bus > u vsc

Fig. 14. Schematic diagram of a compensator (VSC) Fig. 15. Phasor diagrams for different
connected to the supply network relations between Ubus and UVSC

8.2. Static series compensators

The series compensator can be provided with an additional - aside from the load voltage control - function of
symmetrization. The concept of such a compensator and block diagram of the example design is shown in Fig. 16.
The series voltages applied to individual phases of the system - ΔU XSR , (X = 1, 2, 3) can be expressed as the sum of two
three-phase systems, which execute two independent processes:
- Symmetrization. This function is performed by means of the three-phase system of series voltages, determined
on the basis of the measurement of negative-sequence component of load voltages. In result of adding
appropriate components of series voltages ( ΔU XS for x = 1, 2, 3) to the source voltages, the symmetric system
of voltages is obtained at the point B (Fig. 16).

Mitigation of voltage unbalance

- Stabilization of the voltage positive-sequence component value. For this purpose, to the source voltages
has to be added the symmetric system of series voltages ( ΔU XR for x = 1, 2, 3), which guarantees an increase
or reduction of the load voltages, according to the stabilization needs –Fig. 16.

Unbalanced system of the Balanced voltages system with
supply network voltages controlled values

U1 ΔU 2SR U 01

U2 ΔU 2S ΔU 2R

ΔU 3SR U 02

U3 ΔU 3S ΔU 3R

U 03

Fig. 16. Procedure of symmetrization and control of the load voltages by means of the series compensator
The example of a practical system, shown in schematic diagram in Fig. 17, of comprises three single-phase dc/ac
PWM converters connected in series with the supply line through three single-phase transformers. The load voltages
are measured and used for determination of the symmetrical components and hence to the determination of the
converters switching patterns, which ensure obtaining the series voltages. It is also possible to employ a three-phase
inverter with asymmetrical switching functions in individual branches of the converter. The symmetrization and
control / regulation of the load voltage are then performed by means of controlling the amplitude and phase angle
of reference voltages.

Power Quality




Filters of the
(1) (2)

Control (U (1) ) reference

(U (2) ) reference

Fig. 17. The schematic diagram of series system of stabilization symmetrization of the load voltage
1. ANSI C84.1: 1995, American national standard for electric power systems and equipment – voltage ratings.
2. Engineering Recommendation P29: Planning limits for voltage unbalance in the United Kingdom.
The Electricity Council (U.K.), 1989.
3. Gyugyi L., Otto R.A., Putman T.H.: Principles and applications of static, thyristor-controlled shunt compensators.
IEEE Transactions Vol. PAS – 97, no 5, Sep./Oct. 1978.
4. IEC 61000-2-1, 1990: Electromagnetic compatibility-Part 2: Environment-Section 1: Description of the
environment - Electromagnetic environment for low-frequency conducted disturbances and signalling in
public power supply systems.
5. IEC 61000-2-5, 1995: Electromagnetic compatibility-Part 2: Environment-Section 5: Classification
of electromagnetic environments.
6. IEC 1000-2-12, 1995: Electromagnetic compatibility-Part 2: Environment-Section 12: Compatibility levels for
low-frequency conducted disturbances and signalling in public medium-voltage power systems.
7. IEC 61000-4-27, 2000: Electromagnetic compatibility – Part 4-27: Testing and measurement techniques
– Unbalance, immunity test.
8. IEEE P1159.1: Guide for recorder and data acquisition requirements for characterisation of power quality events.
9. Miller J. E.: Reactive power controlled in electric systems. John Willey & Sons 1982.
10. UIE Guide to quality of electrical supply for industrial installations. Part 4: Voltage unbalance. 1998.

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