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1. Introduction

Three-phase systems are commonly used in generation, transmission and distribution of

electric power. Power in a three-phase system is constant rather than pulsating and three-phase

motors start and run much better than single-phase motors. A three-phase system is a

generator-load pair in which the generator produces three sinusoidal voltages of equal

amplitude and frequency but differing in phase by 120 from each other.

The phase voltages va(t), vb(t) and vc(t) are as follows

v a Vm cos t

v b V m cos t 120

v c Vm cos t 240

(1)

,

**whereas the corresponding phasors are
**

Va Vm

Vb Vm e j120

Vc Vm e j240 .

(2)

Va

Ia

Za

Vb

Ib

Zb

Vc

Ic

Zc

In

Fig.1

A three-phase system is shown in Fig 1. In a special case all impedances are identical

Za

(3)

=

Zb

=

**Such a load is called a balanced load and is described by equations
**

V

Ia a

Z

V

Ib b

Z

V

Ic c .

Z

1

Zc

=

Z

.

(5) Since the current flowing though the fourth wire is zero. we obtain In 0 . 2 . 3). 2 The system of connecting the voltage sources and the load branches. as depicted in Fig. In the Y-system shown in Fig. whereas the line-to-line voltages ( or simply line voltages ) are not equal to the phase voltages. the wire can be removed (see Fig. (4) where Va Vb Vc Vm 1 e j120 e j240 1 3 1 3 0. is called the Y system or the star system. The wires connecting the supply to the load are called the lines. Vm 1 cos 120 j sin 120 cos 240 j sin 240 Vm 1 j j 2 2 2 2 Setting the above result into (4). Each branch of the generator or load is called a phase. we have I n Ia I b Ic 1 Va Vb Vc Z . 2.2) n Va Ia Z Vb Ib Z Vc Ic Z n’ Fig. 2 each line current is equal to the corresponding phase current. 2 Y-connected systems Now we consider the Y-connected generator sources ( see Fig.Using KCL. Point n is called the neutral point of the generator and point n’ is called the neutral point of the load.

we obtain 3 1 3 3 Vab Va Vb Va 1 j Va j 2 2 2 2 3 2 Va 2 3 2 2 e j tan 1 3 3 Va 3e j30 . Vca ( see Fig. Vab Va 3 e j30 o . Thus. o (6) We determine the line voltages Vab.3). Vbc.3 The phasors of the phase voltages can be generally written as follows Va V Vme j o Vb Ve j120 Vc Ve j240 .Va a Vb b Vc c n Vab Vca Vbc Fig. Using KVL. (7) holds and similarly we obtain Vbc Vb 3 e j30 o (8) Vca Vc 3 e j30 (9) 3 o . .

Vbc. the line voltages Vab.4 Thus.The phasor diagram showing the phase and line voltages is shown in Fig. a Za=Z Va Vab Vca Zc=Z Zb=Z Vc Vb b Vbc c Fig. Vab Vbc Vca 3 Va .5). (10) The same conclusion is valid in the Y connected load ( see Fig. Vab Vc 30 Va 30 Vca 30 Vb Vbc Fig. Vca form a symmetrical set of phasors leading by 30 the set representing the phase voltages and they are 3 times greater.5 4 .4.

we obtain the node equation Vn Va Vn Vb Vn Vc Vn 0 Z n Za Z p Z b Z p Zc Z p Solving this equation for Vn. Ib. The method consists of three steps as follows: 5 .1 contains perfectly conducting wires connecting the source to the load. The system of Fig.6). we express the currents I a. we have Va Vb Vc Za Zp Zb Zp Zc Zp Vn .3. Zn (14) Hence. Now we consider a more realistic case where the wires are represented by impedances Zp and the neutral wire connecting n and n’ is represented by impedance Zn ( see Fig. Ic and In in terms of the node voltage Vn Ia Va Vn Za Zp (11) Ib Vb Vn Zb Zp (12) Ic Vc Vn Zc Zp (13) In Vn . 1 1 1 1 Zn Za Zp Zb Zp Zc Zp (15) The above relationships enable us to formulate a method for the analysis of three-phase systems.1.6 Using the node n as the datum. an unbalanced system is produced. Three-phase systems calculations When the three phases of the load are not identical. Va n Zp a Ia Vb b Ib Vc c Zp Zp Ic Zn a’ Za b’ Zb c’ Zc n’ In Vn Fig. An unbalanced Y-connected system is shown in Fig.

In such a case we set Z n into (15) Va Vb Vc Za Zp Zb Zp Zc Zp Vn .7. (17) Consequently. When the neutral wire is removed. Hence. where Z a = Zb = Zc = Z.(14). 1 1 1 Za Zp Zb Zp Zc Zp (16) The balanced system can be considered as a special case of the unbalanced system. Z Zp (20) Since Vb Va e j120 and Vc Va e j240 . which can be made applying the one-phase circuit described by equation (18) shown in Fig. Ia Zp Va Z n Va n’ Fig. Find the phase and line voltages using Kirchhoff’s and Ohm’s laws. Ib. the relationships (11)-(13) reduce to Ia Va Z Zp (18) Ib Vb Z Zp (19) Ic Vc . Using (16). we obtain Vn 1 Va Vb Vc Z Zp 3 Z Zp 0 . Ic and In applying (11) .7 This means that the analysis of a balanced three-phase system can be reduced to the analysis of one-phase system depicted in Fig.(i) ( ii ) ( iii ) Determine Vn using (15) Calculate the currents Ia. we have I b Ia e j120 and Ic I a e j240 . the system contains three connecting wires and is called a three-wire system. we need to calculate Ia only using (18).7. Example 6 .

56 j269. we find 220 2 155. Vc Va e j240 220 2 j 2 2 Using (16).68 j54.5 j61.2 23. the impedance of any connecting wire is Z p 2 j2 and the phase impedances of the load are Za 2 j4 . Zc 2 j4 .18 j34. We wish to determine the line currents. The effective value of the generator phase voltage is 220V.63 A .5 j61.8 Since the circuit of Fig. Zb 4 j2 . whereas the load is unbalanced. n Va Zp Vb Zp Vc Ia Vab Ib b Vca Zp Za a Ic c Zb n’ Vbc Zc Vn Fig. The phase generator voltages are Va 220 2 V 1 3 155.44 97.2 18. The system is supplied with a balanced three-phase generator.44 155.49 j19.5 j61.Let us consider three-phase system shown in Fig.44 4 j6 6 4 j6 Vn 97.56 j269.94 A Za Z p 2 j4 2 j2 Ib Vb Vn 155.2 V .44 97. we compute the line currents using (11)-(13) Ia Va Vn 220 2 97.56 j269.56 j269.44 V .44 V Vb Va e j120 220 2 j 2 2 1 3 155. we apply equation (16) to compute Vn.70 A Zb Zp 4 j2 2 j2 Ic Vc Vn 155.56 j269. 1 1 1 4 j6 6 4 j6 Next.8. Zc Z p 2 j4 2 j2 7 .5 j61.2 42.8 is a three-wire system.56 j269.

Hence.9. we obtain Pav 3 Veff L 3 Ieff L cos 3 Veff L Ieff L cos (23) Similarly. The reading of the wattmeter W1 is PW1 1 1 Re Va I a Vm a I m a cos a Veff a I eff a cos a Pa . Veff L 3Veff . Ieff is the effective value of the phase current and is the angle of the impedance. we use three wattmeters connected as shown in Fig. we have ~ Pav 3Pav 3Veff I eff cos (22) In the balanced Y systems. The total average power consumed by the load is the sum of those consumed by each branch. (24) In the unbalanced systems. we add the powers of each phase Pav Veff a I eff a cos a Veff b I eff b cos b Veff c I eff c cos c (25) Px Veff a I eff a sin a Veff b I eff b sin b Veff c I eff c sin c . using (22). (26) In order to measure the average power in a three-phase Y-connected load. the phase current has the same amplitude as the line current Ieff I eff L . the average power consumed by each load branch is the same and given by ~ Pav Veff I eff cos (21) where Veff is the effective value of the phase voltage.4 Power in three-phase circuits In the balanced systems. hence. we derive Px 3 Veff L I eff L sin . whereas the line voltage has the effective value Veff L which is 3 times greater than the effective value of the phase voltage. 2 2 8 .

* a * Vac Ia W1 * b * Vbc c Ib Load W2 Ic Fig. Thus.10) and the asterisk terminals of each wattmeter are short-circuited ( see Fig. W2 and W3 measure the average power of the load branch b and c. the sum of the three readings will give the total average power. Note that in the case of a balanced Y-connected load all three readings are identical and therefore we use only one wattmeter. we can use a method exploiting two wattmeters.* a’ * Ia Za W1 Va Ib * b’ Zb W2 * n’ Vb * c’ * Zc Ic W3 Vc Fig.10). In this method two wattmeters are connected by choosing any one line as the common reference for the voltage coils of the wattmeters. 2 (28) 9 . For measuring average power in a three-phase three-wire system. (27) PW2 1 Re Vbc I b . 9 Similarly. This method of the average power measurement is valid for both balanced and unbalanced Y-connected loads. The current coils are connected in series with the other two lines ( see Fig. respectively.10 The indications of the wattmeters are PW1 1 Re Vac I a 2 .

it holds I a + I b + I c = 0 or Ia + Ib = . Va Ia a Vac b Ib Vbc c Ic Za Vb Zb Vc Zc Fig. (32) . 2 2 PW1 PW2 The sum of PW1 and PW2 gives PW1 PW2 1 Re Va I a Vb I b Vc I a I b .I c .Vc. 2 2 1 1 Re Vb Vc Ib Vb Ib Vc Ib .11. we obtain 1 1 Re Va Vc Ia Va Ia Vc Ia . 2 (29) Currents Ia.Vc and Vbc = Vb . Ic satisfy KCL Ia + I b + I c = 0 Hence. 2 (31) Equation (31) says that the sum of the two wattmeters readings in a Y-connected system equals the total average power consumed by the load. .The load is shown in Fig. Ib.11 Since Vac = Va . (30) Substituting (30) into (29) we have PW1 PW2 1 Re Va I a Vb I b Vc I c Pav . Let us consider a balanced Y-connected load and calculate the instantaneous power delivered by the generator to the load p t va t ia t v b t i b t vc t i c t where 10 .

v b t . i b t Vm cos t 120 i c t Vm (34) where v a t . 11 . the total instantaneous power p(t) delivered by a three-phase generator to the balanced load is constant and equals the average power consumed by the load. i b t . v c t are the voltages of the load branches. i c t are the currents of the load branches and is the angle of the load impedance. We substitute (33)-(34) in (32) p t VmI m[cos t cos t cos t 120o cos t 120o cos t 240o cos t 240o ] and use the trigonometric identity cos x cos y 1 cos x y cos x y .v a t Vm cos t cos t 240 v b t Vm cos t 120o v c t Vm and (33) o i a t Vm cos t cos t 240 . 2 Since cos 2t cos 2t 240o cos 2t 480o 0 we obtain p t 3 Vm I m cos 3Veff I eff cos Pav 2 (35) Thus. i a t . 2 finding p t 1 VmI m 3 cos cos 2t cos 2t 240o cos 2t 480o .

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