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Power Circuit

Breakers
Theory and Operation

Agenda

Breaker fundamentals
Types of Breakers
Ratings
Design Tests

Application & Operations


Application Considerations
Operation Considerations

Introduction
What

does a breaker do?


Circuit interruption
Types of breakers
3

Power Circuit Breakers

Waits for current zero to extinguish arc

Typical interrupting times 3-8 cycles

Attempts to prevent arc re-ignition (The


interrupter must build up dielectric faster
than the recovery voltage builds up)

Commutes plasma by removing energy


which is in the form of heat
4

Power Circuit Breakers

The ability of the breaker to interrupt fault


current is determined by two things:
the magnitude of the fault current
the magnitude and rate of rise of the voltage
across the contacts after the current goes out
(both 60 hertz and transient voltages)

Interrupters

Arcing Contacts and medium (oil or gas)


flow

Oil Interrupters:

Recovery
voltage

I
t
Current zeros

Arc goes out

Types of Breakers:
Oil
Air

blast
Air magnetic
SF6 gas
Vacuum
Others
8

Circuit Breaker Year of Manufacture


140
120

N um b e r

100
airblast
80

vacuum

60

airmag
SF6
OCB

40
20

1999

1994

1989

1984

1979

1974

1969

1964

1959

1954

1949

1923

Year
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Interrupting Mediums

Oil
Mineral oil is used to extinguish the arc and to
insulate the live parts to ground
Generally free breathing
May use a single tank or multiple tanks

Air Blast
Stored air is used to blow out the arc and cool
contacts
Very loud operation
10

Interrupters
Oil

11

Interrupters
Oil

12

Oil Breaker (Westinghouse 345G)

13

Oil Breaker
(McGraw Edison CG38)

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Interrupting Mediums

Air Magnetic
A magnetic field is place perpendicular to the
plane of the arc which drives the arc into insulating
fins
Sensitive to moisture
Compact

SF6 (Sulfur Hexa-flouride gas)


Multi-pressure or puffer operation
High speed
15

Interrupters
Air

Magnetic

Magnetic
Field

Insulating
Fins

Arcing Contacts

16

Interrupters
SF6

Gas

17

Puffer Interrupter

18

Self-Blast Interrupter

19

Gas Breaker (ABB PM)

20

10

Gas Breaker (Westinghouse SP)

21

Gas Breaker (ABB PM)

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11

Interrupting Mediums

Vacuum
Contacts incased in a sealed bottle which is under
vacuum
Compact

Others

Gas mixtures (N2, SF6 etc.)


Water
Solid State
Super-conductor???
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Vacuum

24

12

Vacuum (GE PVDB-1)

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Ratings
Continuous
Interrupting
Close

& latch momentary


Voltage ratings
Switching scenarios

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13

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

27

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Continuous (load current)typically


600,1200, 2000 or 3000 amperes
ANSI C37.04 Definition: The established limit
of current in rms amps at rated frequency that
it shall be required to carry continuously
without exceeding temperature limits of its
components.
Select a breaker with a Continuous Current
rating greater than the peak load current.

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14

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

29

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Interrupting Rating (fault current)typically


20, 31.5, 40, or 63 kilo-amperes
ANSI C37.04 Definition: The highest value of
the symmetrical component of the threephase, short-circuit current in rms amps that
the circuit breaker shall be required to
interrupt at rated maximum voltage and on
the standard operating duty.
Select a breaker with a fault duty greater than
the maximum available fault current.
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15

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Cannot

forget X/R!
Standards assume X/R < 17.
What do you do if X/R > 17?
Delay opening.
Increase kA interrupting requirements
for the breaker.
31

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

K Factor: Applies only to OCBs.


Defined as the ratio of the rated maximum voltage to
the lower limit of the range of operating voltage.
The interrupting capabilities are inversely proportional
to the operating voltage (i.e. a reduced voltage
results in an increase in the current interrupting
capability).
Reference Engineering Manual Section 2 SI 4.0
Application Guideline AC High Voltage Circuit
Breakers Based on Short Circuit Capability Criteria.
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16

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Close

and Latch rating is expressed as


a multiple of the rated short-circuit
current.
The maximum current for which the
breaker will close and latch.stay
closed.
2.6 x rated short circuit current
(Interrupting not Momentary).
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Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Rated Maximum Voltage is the highest rms


phase-to-phase voltage for which the circuit
breaker is designed.
The upper limit for operation.
Typically 15kV, 84kV (25kV, 38kV, 46kV and
69kV), 145kV, 245kV, 362kV and 550kV

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17

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Basic Impulse Level (BIL) ,expressed in kV, is


the maximum electrical impulse level
(lightning strike) that the breaker can be
exposed to and not flashover either internally
or externally.
Actual design BIL does not reflect the
maximum impulse that can be generated
because the magnitude of the impulse
depends on the location of the strike.
The designed BIL reflects the insulation
coordination practices used in the design of
electrical systems (Source: High Voltage
Circuit Breakers: Design and Applications) 35

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


A

circuit breaker is a tie between two


networks
Load

Source

Load

Source

TRV

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18

TRV

Fault:

fault
V=0
Transient Recovery

2 per unit

Fault

Voltage

i
t

37
Breaker opens

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

The ability of the breaker to interrupt fault


current is determined by the magnitude of the
fault current and also by the rate of rise of
the voltage across the breaker contacts as
it opens
Transient Recovery Voltage (TRV): is the
transient voltage that appears across the
contacts while interrupting a faulted circuit.

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19

Transient
Recovery
Voltage:

TRV

bus

line
fault

Initial Rate
of rise
V

Crest recovery
voltage
Total TRV = bus - line

TRVbus = 1 - cos t/sqrtLC

TRVline = 1 - cos t/sqrtLC


t
Time in hundreds of microseconds

39

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Standard C37.011 defines the TRV envelope


that breakers must meet for rated current
(Maximum TRV per standards is 2.4 per unit
of rated breaker voltage)

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20

41

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Some

breakers were able to clear bus


faults with no problem but were unable
to interrupt faults a short distance out on
the line even though the fault current
was less than the bus fault.
The cause of this becomes clear when
the transient recovery voltage is
analyzed for both scenarios:
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21

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Short

Line Fault: A fault that occurs a


relatively short distance downstream
from the circuit breaker on its load side.
Also known as a kilometric fault since
this is generally considered to be the
critical distance for maximum severity of
the recovery voltage.
Allegheny specifies full nameplate
interrupting for a 90% short line fault
43

Short Line Fault:


Vbus

Vline
TRV

Vbus

TRV= Vbus - Vline

Vline

44

22

TRV

V
Fault i
t

Very steep rate of rise for TRV caused by


the short length of the transmission line

45

V
Fault i
t

Adding shunt capacitance


attenuates the rise
46

23

Insert bushing
shunt capacitance
on line side

Short Line Fault:


Vbus

Vline
TRV

TRV= Vbus - Vline

47

Bushing shunt
capacitance

48

24

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

49

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings

Short Line Fault:


SF6 breakers up to 50 kA dont require external
shunt bushing capacitors.
Most breakers rated at 63 kA require external
shunt bushing capacitors to meet Short Line Fault
requirements of the standards.
Mainly breakers above 100 kV.

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25

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


1200pf,

3000pf and 12,000pf are typical


values for external bushing capacitors.

51

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Operating

Duty Cycle: A series of circuit


breaker operations and time delays.
Defined by ANSI as:
O-15 SEC-CO-3 MIN.-CO.
The first time delay can be reduced to
0.3 seconds for breakers designed for
high-speed reclosing.
0.3 seconds is the mechanical resetting
time.
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26

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


A

derating factor R is applied to OCBs


based on their reclosing duty.
This does not apply to SF6 breakers.

53

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Asymmetrical

Current Rating: Maximum


RMS current, at rated frequency,
including DC component against which
the breaker is required to operate.
Function of the system X/R
Standards assume X/R of 17

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27

Power Circuit Breaker Ratings


Momentary

Rating:

Short time current rating


The current, equal to the rated symmetrical
short circuit current, that the breaker is
required to carry for a specified time.
Time = Allowable Tripping Delay

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Application of Circuit
Breakers

56

28

Switching
Surges:

Voltage doubles when closing in on an


open line = 2 P.U. at open line terminal

Z0= L/C
Assume that High Speed Re-closing traps a negative 1 P.U. charge on the
line. Then when the breaker re-closes the maximum voltage at the open end
can approach a maximum of 3.5 - 4.0 P.U. for multiple reflections depending
on damping (R):
3.5 P.U.

Trapped charge = -1.0 P.U.

57

Breaker Applications
Closing

resistors are used to reduce


the switching surge created at the far
end of a transmission line when it is
energized
Once breaker is closed the resistor is
removed from the circuit.
Not designed to handle continuous load
current or fault current.
AP uses closing resistors on EHV breakers
Typical value: 400-450 ohms.
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29

Closing resistors:
bypass

Rc
Z0= L/C

Rc
VS

Z0

V0

V0 = VS

Z0
(Rc + Z0)

59

Closing resistors:
2.0 P.U.

Rc
Z0

V0

V0B second close


V0R first close

Rc > Z0
V0R first close

2.0 P.U.

V0 = VS Z0

V0B second close


(Rc + Z0)
Rc < Z0

Optimum closing
resistor size =
surge impedance

2.0 P.U.

V0R first close = V02 second close

Rc = Z0

60

30

Breaker Applications

Grading capacitors.
Applied on circuit breakers with more than one
gap per pole
Grading capacitors are applied across the
contacts of each interrupter to divide the recovery
voltage during interruption
Insures that the first gap to interrupt does not see
the whole TRV

61

Grading capacitors
500kv PM breaker
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