# Task 1: Identify typical sources of harmonics in a power system Outcome P2.

1 Describe the follow harmonic effects;a) Give a brief explanation, using appropriate diagrams, as to what is meant by the term “harmonics” in power systems. b) Explain the harmonic problems that can arise due to the magnetising current in a transformer. c) Identify and give a brief description of three other typical sources of harmonics in a power system. a) Give a brief explanation, using appropriate diagrams, as to what is meant by the term “harmonics” in power systems.
Harmonics can be thought of “if explained in very simple terms”, as the pollution of the parent generated frequency. The parent frequency is the fundamental frequency, and the pollution the totalling harmonics.

A graphical illustration to show a General overview of the causes of Harmonics in power systems

etc. In most systems. 240 Hz. for every cycle of the fundamental waveform. 180 Hz. 7th. Where power factor capacitors are fitted. The even multiples of the fundamental frequency are known as even-order harmonics while the odd multiples are known as the odd-order harmonics. In this case. (For other countries with 60 Hz systems. a harmonic with a frequency of 150 Hz is known as the third harmonic (50x3 = 150). the fundamental frequency is 50 Hz. overheating and vibration in induction motors and increased losses in transformers. More often than not. 5th. This distortion can be produced by magnetic saturation in the core of transformers or by the switching of thyristors or IGBTs in electronics drive.) We usually specify these orders by their harmonic number or multiple of the fundamental frequency. harmonic order is 100 Hz. All periodic signals of frequency “f" can be represented in the form of a composite sum. there are three complete cycles of the harmonic waveforms. Of sinusoidal terms of which frequencies are integer multiples of fundamental H1: the HARMONICS (Hn). An important fact is that the vast majority of harmonic currents found in a distribution system are odd-order harmonics (3rd. Interestingly. the harmonic order is 120 Hz. The distortion of a voltage or current can be traced to the harmonics it contains. etc.). the sources of the harmonic currents in a distribution system are the loads in operation within that facility or building.Harmonics are defined (by the IEEE) as voltages or currents at frequencies that are a multiple of the fundamental frequency. For example. 150 Hz. and 200 Hz and so on. Harmonic currents are generated whenever a non-linear load is connected to the mains supply. harmonic currents can damage them and care must be taken to avoid resonance with the supply inductance. Of a possible continuous component (DC component) y (t) = h1 (t) + h3 (t) Graphical illustration to show the addition of harmonics . these are frequently the types of loads that are the most sensitive to distortion in the current and/or voltage. especially the neutral cconductor. The problems caused by harmonic currents include overheating of cables. • • • Of a sinusoidal term at frequency “f": the FUNDAMENTAL (H1). Therefore.

Illustrating amplitudes of the harmonics as a function of their frequency. either sinusoidal or non-sinusoidal. can be resolved into its harmonic components (also known as “orders”) with varying magnitude and phase. or that the magnitude of the non-sinusoidal current waveform is the sum of its harmonic components. . It can be shown that any voltage or current waveform. At any point in time in the graph. it can easily be shown that Isum = I1 + I3 + I5. This is graphically demonstrated in the diagram above. A graphic to show Resolution of Non-Sinusoidal Current Waveform into Harmonic Components.Graphical illustration of a complex harmonic waveform The spectrum of a harmonic signal.

if the fundamental amplitude is 240 volts. • • • • .) are usually larger in amplitude than evenordered harmonics..e. Nuisance tripping of molded-case electronic circuit breakers that sense peak current. Typical problems caused by high current and voltage harmonics include. For instance. the voltage THD can be calculated as follows: THD voltage (%) = √ (20²+15²) X 100% = 10. especially the 3rd.An illustration to show the “none” superimposed wave forms Voltage distortion (i. 5th. etc. Overheating of distribution system equipment (bus bars.42% 240 PROBLEMS DUE TO HARMONICS An observed characteristic of harmonic currents in a typical building distribution system is that odd-ordered harmonics (i. Harmonic fluxes in motors that lead to decreased efficiency. heating. Zero-crossing synchronization problems with devices such as digital clocks. and conductor insulation). Overloading of conductors and transformers. Excessive harmonic current can produce distorted voltage drops in the power source impedance.e..). and the 5th harmonic amplitude is 15 volts. This value is then multiplied by 100% to produce a percentage. is generated indirectly as a result of harmonic currents flowing through a distribution system. lugs. These triple-N harmonics. or THD. tend to amplify in the shared neutral conductor of 3-phase 4-wire systems. THD is calculated by taking the square root of the sum of the squares of all harmonics above the fundamental and dividing by the fundamental amplitude. the 3rd harmonic amplitude is 20 volts. 7th. deviation from the pure sinusoidal wave-shape).. • • Resonant interaction with capacitor banks that can lead to overheating and premature failure. 3rd. the 3rd. A measure of harmonic content has been defined as Total Harmonic Distortion. and excessive vibration. etc. such as power electronic devices. 6th. tend to produce harmonic currents that are predominantly triple-N or multiples of 3 (i.e. Another observed effect is that single-phase non-linear loads. 9th.

eddy current losses are of most concern when harmonics are present.A flow diagram to show Harmonic effects b) Explain the harmonic problems that can arise due to the magnetising current in a transformer. the harmonic distortion level of the current increases substantially. . and eddy current and resistive losses in the windings. If the transformer saturates (due to over-voltage). The effects of harmonics inside the transformers involve mainly three aspects: a) increase of iron losses (or no-load losses) b) increase of copper losses c) presence of harmonics circulating in the windings a) The iron losses are due to the hysteresis phenomenon and to the losses caused by eddy currents. Of these. whereas the losses due to eddy currents depend on the square of the frequency. the losses due to hysteresis are proportional to the frequency. the harmonic spectrum of the load current must be known. By definition third harmonic currents are present in the magnetizing current (a small portion of the transformer full load current). because they increase approximately with the square of the frequency. Losses in transformers are due to stray magnetic losses in the core. Before the excess losses can be determined.

In the case of delta. This type of transformer is called a K-rated transformer In trying to explain what is happening with the currents inside the transformer I will make reference to the two diagrams which follow. (the right half show the production of the top have of the Hysteresis Loop . Since the magnetizing characteristic B-H is nonlinear. under these circumstances. since the losses by Joule effect increase. the current waveform obtained from magnetizing curve is not sinusoidal. the excitation current Ie is split into two components: the magnetizing current (I μ) and the current which is proportional to the iron core power losses (Ife). This displacement can be explained by means of excitation current waveform. the windings correspond to a barrier for triple-N harmonics. the harmonics flow through the windings and do not spread towards the network source since they are all in phase. These two first aspects affect the overheating which sometimes causes a de-rating of the transformer c) The third aspect is related to the effects of the triple-N harmonics (having uniform polarity harmonics) on the transformer windings. the conductors offer a smaller cross section to the current flow. These currents are displaced from each other by an angle Π/2. Since most loads produce high levels of the 3rd harmonic (one of the triples). For this reason. Illustration to show the magnetic saturation. and has a hysteresis loop. As the frequency rises (starting from 350 Hz) the current tends to thicken on the surface of the conductors (skin effect). The circulating harmonics in the primary of the transformer creates heat because of their higher frequencies.b) The copper losses correspond to the power dissipated by Joule effect in the transformer windings. the harmonic content is reflected back and thus the source is reduced. a transformer that can handle the excess heat is required. Whatever the type of transformer it is necessary to pay attention to this type of harmonic mechanism for a correct sizing of the transformer. In the first. In case of delta windings. If the coil is supplied with sinusoidal voltage the flux Φ must be sinusoidal too. The triple-N harmonics are trapped and circulate in the delta primary of the transformer.

(b) flux and magnetisation current waveforms The Hysteresis Loop It is usual to plot the magnetization M (vertical axis) of the sample as a function of the magnetic field strength H (horizontal axis). . since H is a measure of the externally applied field which drives the magnetization.Transformer magnetisation (including hysteresis): (a) magnetisation curve.

The input of these power supplies normally consists of a full-wave bridge rectifier and a DC filter capacitor which produces an alternating pulse current waveform rich in third harmonic. Illustration to show a comparison of different types harmonic sources Switched Mode Power Supplies: Typically found in single-phase electronic devices such as computers and other business and consumer electronics. these devices use a switching regulator to precisely control the DC voltage. Switch mode power supply rectifier . the cumulative effects of many devices may create concerns. Identify and give a brief description of three other typical sources of harmonics in a power system.c). Though they are not used in large power applications. particularly for 415/230 Volt Y (wye) systems.

Harmonic spectrum of a typical PC Fluorescent lighting: These devices produce a mainly third order harmonic current on the order of 20% to 30% of the fundamental current. Their great disadvantage is that they generate harmonics in the supply current. Overall they are only a little more efficient than the best magnetic ballasts and in fact. but at a cost penalty. Electronic lighting ballasts have become popular in recent years following claims for improved efficiency. . So called power-factor corrected types are available at higher ratings that reduce the harmonic problems. Electronic ballasts have slightly different characteristics but display similar levels of harmonics. most of the gain is attributable to the lamp being more efficient when driven at high frequency rather than to the electronic ballast itself. The harmonic current spectrum is shown below. Harmonic spectrum of a Typical Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) These lamps are being widely used to replace filament bulbs in domestic properties and especially in hotels where serious harmonic problems are suddenly becoming common. Smaller units are usually uncorrected.

Light dimmer or heating regulator Three-phase rectifier with front end capacitor Three-phase rectifier with DC filtering reactor .Pulse-Width Modulated Converters: These devices use an external controller for switching the input transistors allowing the current waveform to be shaped more desirably. these converters are limited in power and typically used in applications less than a few hundred kilowatts. However. The Wave shapes of current absorbed by some other non-linear loads.

utexas. Colmenar.. La Laguna.T. 2. Spain.References Power System Harmonics……………………………………………N.copperinfo.George J.uk/power-quality/harmonics/neutral-sizing.. Carpio and A. R.Harmonics in Practice Copper Development Association http://www.uk/power-quality/downloads/pub-145-harmonics-in-practice. Hogeschool West-Vlaanderen http://www. Avda.co.co.p df Significant issue of harmonics in power quality and how they affect electronic equipment pt 1.com/vcmcontent/StaticFiles/pdf/Harmonics_Primer_Part_1_PROTECTED.uk/power-quality/downloads/pub-144-harmonics-transformers-kfactors. Hogeschool West-Vlaanderen & Prof Angelo Baggini.Harmonics. Wakileh .co.copperinfo.shtml Pub144 . MA. 12. analysis. Hawaiian Electric Company http://www.I.uk/power-quality/harmonics/transformer-selection-rating. Watson.copperinfo. C. Università di Bergamo http://www. De La Rosa Power Quality and Utilisation Guide -Causes and Effects David Chapman http://www.com/ICREPQ'09/P1. of Electrical & Computer Engineering University of Texas at Austin http://users.co.L. Hernandez.uk/power-quality/power-quality-guide.p df Understanding Power System Harmonics Prof.pdf Pub145 .S. Harmonics and power systems……………………………………….copperinfo.D. J.E. Jos Arrillaga Power systems harmonics: fundamentals. Mack Grady. Castro.U. and filter design…….heco. Department of Electrical. Hawaiian Electric Company http://www.ece.shtml Selection and Rating of Transformers Prof Jan Desmet.com/vcmcontent/StaticFiles/pdf/Harmonics_Primer_Part_2_PROTECTED.pdf . IES La Laboral de La Laguna. Madrid 28040. Department of Electricity.icrepq.N.I. Tenerife.copperinfo.Francisco C.edu/~grady/Harmonics_Notes_Grady_June_2006_print. Ciudad Universitaria. Dept.Transformers and K-Factors Copper Development Association http://www. Lora y Tamayo. Juan del Rosal. http://www. Electronic and Control Engineering E.pdf Harmonics in Power Systems J.heco.pdf Significant issue of harmonics in power quality and how they affect electronic equipment pt 1.shtml Neutral Sizing in Harmonic Rich Installations Prof Jan Desmet.co.