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We now will study the various types of disturbances occurring in power system with their magnitude and duration:
Complete interruptions: This is our country biggest problem when we study about power quality, the reasons are many. In the European standard EN 50160 two terms are used:
Reasons for interruptions are: Power system faults(such as LG,LLG,LLL,LLLG), Equipments failure, Control system malfunctions, Delayed reclosing of the protective devices, Insulation failure of a permanent fault outcome of relay protections working, Environmental related damages, Difference between Generation and Load which leads to leading to load shedding and this happens because of overloading of lines or transformer. Frequent Local interruptions such as maintenance work of instruments, improvements in existing network etc. and this can take several hours. In such cases, the industries, household customers and utilities will face difficulties and losses. We have no proper mechanisms to inform our customers for such outages.
Flickering, spikes and surges i.e., Brownouts: It is a visible change in the brightness or intensity of the lamps due to fluctuations in the supply voltage. The main causes are equipments having continuous load variations such as large motors starting and static frequency converters etc. Other reasons include transformer on load tap changer, loose connections in the transformer bushings. Variations in generation’s capacity such as in case of wind turbines. Frequent tripping can also be included in this category. Effects of voltage fluctuations include unwanted tripping of relays and problems with sensitive equipments such in case of laboratories.
Low Voltage: The main reason for this is overloading. If the voltage doesn’t lie with the specified limits of the instrument then it may cause damage to sensitive equipments. Some of the voltage variations can be reduced by using voltage stabilizer, which ensures a constant output voltage.
High Voltage: High voltages are mainly caused due to large load changes and power lines switching. If voltage reaches too high value then it can damage electrical equipments. Causes of high voltages are transients, tap changers etc. Devices used to control high voltages in a system are surge protectors or surge arrestor.
Transformer Failure: This can be caused by many reasons such as deterioration of insulating oil, unbalanced loading, overloading etc. As transformer just transfers energy from one circuit to another so chances of its failure are very low. Usually a minimum of 10% of the distribution transformers will fail every year in any utility. The replacement of transformers usually takes a lot of time (depends on the size) and thus causing interruption to a larger area. The probability of failure of power transformers is very less as compared to that of distribution transformer.
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