2008 IEEE Electrical Power & Energy Conference


Negative Sequence Impedance based Islanding Detection for Distributed Generation (NSIID)
Michael Wrinch, Member, IEEE, Jos´ e Mart´ ı, Fellow, IEEE, Mukesh Nagpal, Member, IEEE

Abstract—This paper introduces a novel method of islanding detection for distributed generation networks employing negative sequence impedance measurement. The negative sequence impedance islanding detection method (NSIID) is an improvement on previous impedance measurement techniques for islanding detection because it has a small non-detection zone and large threshold window, which previous techniques have had difficulty achieving. Experiments were conducted on a distributed generator fed commercial building by measuring naturally occurring and injected negative sequence components. Results indicate that naturally occurring unbalanced load conditions are readily measurable and correlate to the system Th´ evenin impedance. The experimental measurements also confirmed the accuracy of the negative sequence components exhibited in simulations, which were employed to analyze islanded conditions. This work further demonstrated that injecting negative sequence current into the distribution network increases the measurability of negative sequence currents, improving the accuracy of our proposed islanding detection technique. Index Terms—Distributed generation, Islanding detection, Protection, Power systems, Symmetrical components, impedance measurement

damage to equipment, liability to utilities, reduced reliability and degraded power quality. Thus, islanding detection is an important and necessary component of distributed generation systems. Of the many islanding detection methods and their derivatives [1] [2], impedance based islanding detection theoretically has a very large threshold window for radial systems with strong utility network connections. Take for example Fig. 1, which illustrates a system consisting of two 25 kV loads, S1 and S2 , that are being fed by the utility and DG. Loads S1 and S2 consume a total power of 1 MW, the source DG has an output power of 5 MVA and the utility has a strength of 100 MVA. The resulting impedances in pu with SBase = 100 M V A and VBase = 25 kV are ZUtil = 1 pu and ZDG = 26 pu. The change in Th´ evenin impedance at the PCC when Breaker A is open and closed would be nearly 26 times. Such a change in impedance in this system would allow for easy threshold settings for islanding detection.

I. I NTRODUCTION HIS paper presents a test case demonstrating the usefulness negative sequence impedance islanding detection method (NSIID). This novel method of islanding detection for the protection of distributed generator (DG) fed systems uses negative sequence symmetrical component to determine the Th´ evenin impedance of the network. NSIID addresses the four challenges associated with impedance based islanding detection methods: 1.installation cost, 2.reduction of power quality, 3.integration complexity, 4.high injection power. The results of the NSIID test case, which was performed on a distributed generator fed 600 V commercial building, show a significant threshold triggering window and fast response between utility connected and islanded states. A. Background Recent interest in distributed generator installations into low voltage busses near electrical consumers has created new challenges for protection engineers that are different from traditional radial system protection methodologies. Typical protection schemes such as those for re-closing and impedance protection, need to be re-thought to account for the unplanned islanding of distributed generator systems. The condition of islanding is defined as occuring when a leg of the power system containing distributed generation is isolated from the power system. This is undesirable because of the potential for
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Fig. 1.

Radially Fed Distributed Generation System

B. Impedance Based Islanding Detection There are several patents and published methods that use the impedance measurement methods to detect islanding. These methods are “Signal Injection” [3], [4] and “Variations in the Voltage and Frequency” [5]. Single non-harmonic frequency injection was found to be an effective impedance measurement method as published by Asiminoaei in [6] and [7] and by Wang in [8]. Though the non-harmonic frequency injection method has demonstrated to be effective, this technique suffers from costly interfacing to the power network, disruptive injections, high injection power requirement and complex integration. The technique used in this paper is also based on impedance measurements, however, here we use unbalanced conditions already present in the power network or small unbalanced injected signals to measure impedance at the fundamental frequency as opposed to measuring at other frequencies.

The NSIID Method The islanding detection method presented in the paper. Position 3 is at the solar panel DG inverter system where negative sequence current injection islanding detection experiments were performed. . The impedance was calculated through the assumption that both the negative sequence. takes the theoretically accurate concept of impedance measurement and extends it into the symmetrical component [11] impedance domain. The experiments for negative sequence impedance islanding detection were conducted at the points “1”. Likewise. this building could potentially island in the local network. Realistic simulation conditions were created by matching the loading and unbalanced conditions measured from Position “1” and “2”. however. and positive sequence. [Ill ] = [ia ll ill ill ] is the corresponding three phase current vector leaving the load during this state. [Vhl ] is the three phase voltage vector under normal load and [Ihl ] is the three phase current vector leaving the load. the variable [E0 ] represents a constant voltage source. Position “1” is the main building feeder where natural unbalanced currents and voltages were measured for a 24-hour period. The bold letters “A” and “B” in Fig 2 represent the the breakers where DG islanding could occur.5 kV to the 69 kV interface. C. if a large array or other generating technology was installed. The method employs the assumption that the impedance of an islanded network is much greater than a utility connected network as seen in Equation 1. “2” and “3” in the building’s electrical system as seen in Fig 2. The solar panels on the roof did not at the time of this work have the capacity to supply the entire building’s energy demand. Equation 4 and Equation 5. The electrical reach of negative sequence impedance measurement was also investigated. The negative sequence impedance is calculated using Equation 2 where V2 is the negative sequence voltage at the point of measurement and I2 is the negative sequence current at the point of measurement. zba . zcc . Details of the distribution system in the single line diagram were supplied by the local. The variables with a subscript ‘2’ in Equation 1 indicate negative sequence components. Z1 . . The impedances shown in Fig 2 are in pu with a base power of 100 MVA. Z2 . . . In another application. Z2−Island Z2−T he ´venin >> Z2−Utility−Connected V2 ≈ − I2 (1) (2) B. The single line diagram is on the left hand side of Fig 2 and the associated impedances are shown on the right hand side of Fig 2. zaa . The data was then converted to symmetric components using matlab scripts.2 Similar techniques using unbalance conditions have been previously applied for islanding detection and impedance measurement. NSIID. zab . System Description The system employed to test the NSIID method was a four storey 600 V commercial building in British Columbia.5 cycles). . . A. [E0 ] = [E0 ] = [Vhl ] + ·[ZABC ] · [Ihl ] [Vll ] + [ZABC ] · [Ill ] zab = a a − vhl vll b ihl − ib ll (3) (4) (5) II. The impedance was found to be accurately measurable through a multivariable solution of positive and negative sequence component injections. of [ZABC ]. The purpose of this experiment was to demonstrate how negative sequence impedance could be used for islanding detection on a low voltage bus. Limited access to Position “3” prevented direct voltage and current measurements. The building schematics did not specify the distribution cable and transformer impedances. which provides a solution for the elements. impedances were equal. . Combining Equations 3 and 4. results in Equation 5. The base voltages are listed on each bus. Negative-sequence current injection on the order of 2% to 3% allowed for fast islanding detection in less than 60 ms(3. These experiments were conducted at various locations in the building. using the existence of naturally and artificially produced unbalanced conditions [12]. a b c T vll vll ] represents the three phase The vector [Vll ] = [vll b c T voltage under low load conditions where. Position “2” is a 208 V feeder on the building’s 3rd floor where unbalanced injection experiments were performed. but detailed simulations were run to demonstrate the performance of the negative sequence islanding detection technique at the DG inverter’s terminals. . Position “B” is . Position “A” is the breaker at the 12. Experimental Method The experiments conducted used both naturally occurring and injected negative sequence symmetric components to calculate the Th´ evenin impedance out of the building. The negative sequence component was created by inserting a line-to-line unbalanced source of varying frequency across two of the three phases. zcb . In these equations. A single line diagram with an associated impedance diagram from the 69 kV utility distribution system to the 600 V office building is shown in Fig 2. an unbalanced source has been used to monitor a ship’s impedance network for stability [10]. utility provider. Karimi in [9] described the use of negative sequence current injection and measurement for islanding detection in simulation. where a controlled voltage source inverter was used to make the injections. NSIID C ASE S TUDY: 600 V F ED C OMMERCIAL B UILDING This section details the case study performed on a 600 V network using the NSIID method including a description of the test system. The impedance values of these components were found by measuring the voltage drop through components during two different loading conditions using Equation 3. the experimental method employed and the observed results. Canada with a solar panel installation. The data for all the experiments were acquired using the AEMC 3945 three phase power analyzer and logger.

5 pu. When Breaker “A” was opened. power per phase is plotted in Fig 3 and filtered over 15 minute windows to remove noise for viewing. The following experimental impedances results are expressed in pu for a 100 MVA base capacity. Winter 100 Phase A Phase B Phase C 90 Apparent Power. The building . the positive 1 sequence impedance is Z1 = V I1 . As Breaker “A” and “B” were opened. Experimental Results 1) Position 1: 600 Volt Main Feeder: The purpose of the experiment at Position “1” (Fig 2) was to determine if the naturally occurring negative sequence components could be measure accurately to determine the Th´ evenin impedance of the system feeding the building for islanding detection. meaning that Z1 equates to the building’s load demand on one phase.000 pu in a similar amount of time. The negative 2 sequence impedance Z2 = − V I2 means that Z2 equates to the Th´ evenin impedance out of the building.6 pu impedance has been obtained by calculating the Th´ evenin impedance from the impedance diagram in Fig 2 from the 600 V bus at Point 1 to the 69 kV utility feeder. the negative sequence increased from 27 pu to 150 pu in less than 0.6 pu and the average Th´ evenin impedance towards the building was 480 pu. The opening of Breakers “A” and “B” were simulated using the equivalent Simulink model as shown in Fig 6. heaters and lighting with an average per phase steady state Th´ evenin impedance of 480 pu and the Th´ evenin impedance of the system feeding the building was 11. while the negative sequence current ranged The positive and negative sequence impedances at this feeder vs.000 pu is very large meaninless number and it can be considered to be inifinite. the negative sequence voltage on the 600 V bus ranged from 0. Testing island and non-island states poses an experimental challenge as the main power switches in this case study could not be simply opened and closed. The experimentally measured negative sequence impedance correlates to the actual Th´ evenin impedance away from the building averaging at 27. While the solar panel is not connected. The Simulink model was validated by comparing the voltage quality and unbalance at various nodes with actual system measurements. The average negative sequence impedance measured was 27.0 A to 11. The voltage and current was taken from the main 600 V feeder simultaneously over a 24-hour period at a sampling rate of once per minute.02 s. The actual Th´ evenin impedance towards the utility was 11.5 pu and the average positive sequence impedance measured was 500 pu. Commercial Office DG Fed System Single Line Diagram Fig.14 V to 0. 86. This took place during a January weekday with the outdoor air temperature ranging from from 5 to 10 degrees celcius. From this data. time are shown in Fig 4 for direct comparison of the two. Therefore.3 from 1. The primary consuming loads of the building were computers. When Breaker “B” was opened. the negative sequence impedance quickly increases.63 V.4 kVA. The median three phase power over a 24-hour period was 205. The model was created using the schematic given by the local utility and by modeling live unbalanced conditions previously measured on the live system. 10 15 Time − 1PM to 1PM (hours) 20 Commercial Office 24 Hour Power Demand a breaker at the 12 kV to 600 V transformer.5 pu (Fig 5) and was not affected by the building load profile throughout the day as the positive sequence impedance highlights (Fig 4). where the respective base voltages depend on the bus of interest. the negative sequence increased from 150 pu to 86. The 11. 2. the non-islanded states have been directly measured on the live system and compared to the actual impedance values while the islanded states were validated using a model of the building constructed using the Matlab Simulink Power Systems Library. The negative sequence is shown on its own in Fig 5. The negative sequence impedance varied randomly by ±17. kVA 80 70 60 50 40 5 Fig.6 pu. Building Power Demand Over 24 Hours. The 480 pu impedance was obtained from the average 2 daily demand on the building and the equation Z = V S . 3.7 A. In the twenty-four-hour period. C.

Position “2” is shown in Fig 2 on the single line diagram in the left and the impedance diagram on the right. The experiment was run from one of the office building’s third floor 208 V power sources. The delta connected phase combinations of AB. For example. ZLoad and Z2 Measured Over 24 Hours Fig. Experiments of the non-islanded state were run on the live system while islanded states were simulated. Zsys ≈ a b c 1 v2 v2 v2 + + 3 ia ic ib 2 2 2 (6) Fig. or if there is another significant negative sequence source that corrupts the measurement. The impedance changes were determined through simulation with Breaker “B” being opened. this is where negative sequence currents were injected and the negative sequence a and ia In Equation 6 the variables v2 2 are the negative sequence voltages and currents. represent the negative sequence impedance versus injected power. BC and CA.6 pu (Position “1”) as shown in Fig. the change in negative sequence impedance was far more significant rising to near infinite levels. respectively. from the 208 V bus to the 208:600 volt transformer the impedance from the was 92 pu and the transformer’s impedance was 35 pu (8%). 2. The Th´ evenin impedance of the system measured from the third floor 208 V feeder at Position “2” was 253. Some inaccuracy of the negative sequence impedance measurement is expected due to the other unbalanced loads in the system.6 pu impedance can be broken down into several components: from the experimental setup (Position “2”) to the first breaker the impedance was 120 pu. listed in the legend. This is described by Equation 6. Specifically.6 pu. when Breaker “B” was opened. with phase a as the reference phase. leaving Phase C open on the 208 V bus. The experiment used a three phase injection averaging method developed to improve the accuracy caused by other external unbalanced loads.4 Fig. Phase AB represents a load being placed on phases AB only while leaving phase BC and CA open. . 6. 4. Z2 At Position 1 During Breaker A and B Opening impedance was measured. creating an ideal negative sequence injector [13] as shown in Fig 7. The 253. 5. Injections of negative sequence currents were created by connecting a variable load from Phase A to Phase B. However. The Th´ evenin impedance from the transformer towards the feeding system was 11. 2 demonstrated how negative sequence components can be injected when there is not enough naturally occurring unbalance of the phase voltages and currents. Safety limitations led to the experiment being carried out on the higher impedance 208 V bus at Position “2” instead of on the lower impedance 600 V bus. Z2 Measured Over 24 Hours DG cannot support the power requirements inside the network contained within Breaker “A” and so the voltage collapses when Breaker “A” is opened. The measured impedance from injecting negative sequence components is shown in Fig 8. 2) Position 2: Negative Sequence Injection on the 208 Volt Bus: This experiment at Position “2” in Fig.

2 pu in under 0. the inverter would inject negative sequence components into the network to measure the negative sequence impedance. ZLoad and Z2 .2 pu to detect . The measurement’s average was 277 pu as depicted in Fig. This may make threshold settings for an islanding detection relay to detect Breaker “B” opening very difficult at this postion because of the small 11. the impedance measurements did not stabilize until the injected power was over 1000 watts.5%. The negative sequence impedance in the simulation was 39. To do this. After the initial stabilization of the islanding. As Case Study 2 demonstrated. The level of output unbalanced voltage at the inverter’s terminals was set to 2. Negative Sequence Impedance Per Phase to Phase Load Experiment The system was islanded by opening Breaker “B” in simulation. which is the most difficult case for many islanding detection techniques. this system was integrated into the building directly through an inverter connected to a 208:600 V transformer on the main bus of the building. 9.2 pu. At the time of the experiment. the negative sequence impedance increased to 567. When Breaker “B” was opened.015 s. Additionally. The Th´ evenin impedance of the system under non-islanded conditions from the solar DG was 37 pu. more accurate impedance readings were made with only 100 watts of injected power. there is a small change in impedance between an islanded condition and a non-islanded condition. The small change of 20 pu relative to the 200 pu steady state impedance is not adequate for accurate islanding detection. This variation would allow an islanding detection relay threshold to be comfortably set between 39. 7. 9. The change between an islanded and non islanded state is only 20 pu is due to the high input impedance from the 208 V bus. 8. The changes in impedance are shown in Fig. Steady state conditions for the experimental simulations were also set so that there was nearly zero power flowing from the utility into the building. Islanded and non-islanded conditions were simulated in the network by monitoring the negative sequence components. Negative Sequence Injection Experimental Setup The measured impedance from this experiment gave negative sequence impedance results ranging from 500 pu to 100 pu on different phases. 8. individually unbalancing each phase and subsequently measuring the negative sequence impedance allowed a more accurate impedance averaging technique to be employed.5 higher than the small change of 11. Fig. When the averaging technique was employed with filtering.6 pu that occurs from opening Breaker “B”. Fig. however. Negative Sequence Transition to Islanded States Simulation Fig. The actual impedance of 253 pu is much 3) Position 3: 600 Volt Solar Panel Coupling: The experiment at Position “3” shown in Fig 2 was performed at the point of electrical coupling of the solar DG system.6 pu change relative to the 253 pu total impedance. The purpose of this experiment was to show how negative sequence islanding detection can be used directly by the inverter. The negative sequence injection technique was performed by lowering the voltage on each phase individually for several cycles. The resulting calculated impedances.2 pu and 567. quickly increased when Breaker “B” was opened to island the system.

vol. August 5 2003. Building Solar DG Islanding Detection III. no. 2nd ed. Yazdani. 2004. G. Jos´ e Mart´ ı (F02) received the electrical engineer degree from Central University of Venezuela. “A digital controlled pv-inverter with grid impedance estimation for ens detection. Symmetrical components as applied to the analysis of unbalanced electrical circuits. Corzine. 2005. Additional improvements in measurement accuracy were found by employing the three phase unbalance impedance averaging method. Borup. in less than 4 cycles. R. He is a Professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of British Columbia.” vol. however. [13] W. Canada. degree in 2002 from Memorial University of Newfoundland. [10] J. pp. Mart´ ı. 2004. He is known for his contributions to the modeling of fast transients in large power networks.E. 23. Teodorescu. B. Burnaby.D. Blaabjerg. Begovic. Canada.P. in 1981.” Power Delivery. 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Michael Wrinch (M01) Received his B. Saskatoon. and T. The natural load unbalance of the building served as an effective means for passively measuring negative sequence Th´ evenin impedance towards the utility at the test building’s 600 V feeder. 53. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Saskatchewan. [3] C. and U. in 1990. D. W. Ropp. [7] ——. 2004. in 1974. F. 1767. no. “Provisional patent application: Method and apparatus for finding th´ evenin equivalents in a power system and detecting voltage stability conditions. 2007. He is an active member of the IEEE and he is a Professional Engineer in the province of British Columbia. 22. Islanding detection at its 208 V bus was dependant on the impedance of the connection to the 600 V bus. H. He is a PhD candidate at the University of British Columbia. Canada. D ISCUSSION Islanding detection using negative sequence impedance measurement on a 600 V bus has been demonstrated. W. and S. p. Zhihong Ye. pp.A. 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