Course № E-5005 Electrical Power System Design for Industrial Facilities

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Principles of Electric Power System Design for Industrial Facilities
Louie J. Powell, PE Saratoga Springs, NY

Industrial facilities utilize electric power in the process of manufacturing an industrial product. The requirements of the industrial manufacturing process drive the specific requirements that the facility must satisfy. Different industrial manufacturing processes have vastly different technical requirements for electric power, but those requirements always come down to decision points regarding a relatively small number of key considerations: Safety – all industrial workplaces are inhabited by people. In the early days of industrialization, debilitating accidents and even fatalities were often accepted as part of the cost of doing business. While tragedies for the immediate families of those affected, these events were viewed as the unavoidable consequence of applying technology to activities that involved inherent risk. Today, however, safety is considered a “prime directive” in industry, and facilities have to be designed to achieve the highest level of protection for employees. Occasional accidents still occur, but injuries and fatalities are almost always investigated thoroughly to determine a root cause, and corrective actions are undertaken to assure that similar events don’t occur a second time. And governmental agencies such as OSHA in the US are empowered to impose severe penalties on employers who fail to properly protect employees from workplace injury. Reliability – A critical requirement in industry is reliability. Industrial facilities are almost always designed to achieve a target production rate – X automobiles per day, Y bottles of beer per month, Z tons of finished paper per week, etc. Failure of the power system will cause a shortfall in production, with direct economic consequences on the owner. Maintainability – industrial facilities also have to be maintained. Maintenance is not an objective unto itself, but rather is required to assure that the safety and reliability designed into the system at the time of its initial construction will continue to be there many years into the future. And maintenance must be possible without compromising either safety or reliability. As a result, it is necessary to anticipate maintenance practices at the time that the facility is first designed. Economy – the industrial workplace exists to produce a product, and in the vast majority of cases, those products are sold in a competitive marketplace that focuses management attention on the cost of production. Accountants have cleverly invented processes to amortize the cost of the facility over the expected future production, and impose intense pressure on reducing per-product cost in order to increase operating margins. As a consequence, every design decision is subject to review on the basis of its impact of final cost, and only those decisions that can be supported in terms of achieving reasonable safety or operating reliability are likely to be approved by management. In this context, electric power, and the infrastructure required to supply electric power, are viewed as simply elements in the cost of doing business, and in this context, it is sometime helpful to identify that there are four elements of the cost of electric power: 1. The cost of the power itself, either in terms of the price that must be paid to a commercial power supplier, or the equivalent in fuel used to generate the power within the industrial facility. 2. The amortized cost of the infrastructure required to deliver electric power to the process. 3. The cost of maintenance.
© 2008 Louie J. Powell, PE Page 1 Rev 1

with a 4-hour maintenance window overnight. lubricants. The distribution system is a utility structure within the industrial facility. The cost of reliability will be discussed in more detail further in this course. there will be pressures to find ways to reduce these costs. paper and petrochemical slightly less so. a new facility might be intended to operate in normal production mode for two 10-hour shifts per day. and waste treatment are utilities. For example. That means that the designer of the facility has to anticipate that the electrical demand will grow over time.4. the rate of energy conversion. One of the challenges faced by the designer of an industrial power system is that while a target production rate is specified at the time of initial design. the expected electrical energy consumption per unit of product is expected to diminish over time as process engineers find more efficient ways to produce the product. PE Page 2 Rev 1 . But the economy objective also limits how much inherent expandability the power system engineer can afford to build into the initial design to allow for process growth. or structure. Discrete manufacturing (“thingmakers”) typically assume a daily operating cycle expressed in terms of the number of shifts per day. the electric power requirement in kWHr for a cement plant can be related directly to the expected output of the plant in tons/day of final product. etc. etc. In addition. raw material supply. But there is also a cost associated with safety – the direct costs of “lost time” accidents. That production rate typically will take into account the expected operating cycle of the plant. for which the plant is designed. that actual target energy requirement for a proposed new facility must be obtained from the engineers who are responsible for designing © 2008 Louie J. In fact. of the power system for an industrial facility is differentiation between distribution and utilization of electric power. Part of that increase is expected to come out of productivity. As a result. while discrete manufacturing tends to require less energy per unit of final product. shutting down only for major. The Basic Requirements of the Distribution System One of the key considerations in the basic architecture. The target production rate translates directly to a capacity figure for each of the utilities that support the plant. Distribution is the process of moving electric power from its source to the point where it is consumed. reliability and maintainability. cooling water. the legal and other indirect costs associated with personal injury. And like any other component of cost in a business. Powell. For example. But another part of the increase in production will inevitably come at the prices of an increased total plant electrical demand. And eventually. byproduct handling. in the automotive industry. A target production rate is always specified when new plants are initially designed. and the techniques used to achieve that rate. the conversion will vary between product lines and between manufacturers. for five days per week. just like potable water. Paper mills and oil refineries typically operate continuously. the usual expectation is that the plant will operate 24/7. or finished automobiles. and that cycle may include an inherent maintenance period. In continuous process industries (“stuffmakers”). the expected rate of production typically will increase over time. The cost of adverse events associated with power. That is. natural gas. thorough rehabilitation once every couple of years. to produce the target number of “jobs”. while retaining safety. that growth in production capacity presents a need for creativity on the part of the power system engineer who will be challenged to find ways to increase the electrical capacity of the infrastructure at minimum costs – avoiding the need to replace otherwise functional equipment. are typically considered proprietary information in that they directly relate to how individual companies achieve competitiveness in their respective markets. The conversion of required infrastructure capacity to the product output target varies from one industry to another – aluminum smelting is very energy-intensive.

having a performance specification that defines the parameters that were expected for the system at the time it was originally designed will help keep the discussion about what should be done about expansion focused on performance. voltage. it may be possible to use benchmark numbers from similar. For example. In fact. there is no true “standard” for the design of an industrial power system. or architecture. and help avoid pointless arguments about “what should have been known” when the plant was first designed. thermal capacity. are not “independent variables” that have inherent significance on their own. and short circuit level. Recommended Practice for Industrial Power Distribution for © 2008 Louie J. while in Europe. frequency is the easiest choice to make because frequency is almost always a given based on location. or architecture of the system. Instead. The other component ratings must be selected as part of the design of the facility. or justifying the costs of modifying an existing system to accommodate load growth. still exist). PE Page 3 Rev 1 . and the criteria discussed here may be helpful in sorting through the competing objectives to arrive a acceptable solutions for individual cases. The reference that comes closest to being a standard is IEEE 141. However. thermal and short circuit capacities that are available for equipment. 2. while there are a number of references available to the design engineer. Reliability Steady-state performance Performance under expected dynamic conditions Protection The discussion that follows presents some criteria in each of these areas that have proven to be helpful in making design decisions. That will avoid questions about “why” certain features are (or are not) included in the design. Africa and most of Asia. older facilities for preliminary planning purposes. the standard frequency is 50Hz. 3.the process to be embedded in that facility. but rather are “dependent variables” that are driven by four key decisions pertaining to expected system performance: 1. however. And a major effort in that design is to make decisions about the basic arrangement. One of the most important steps in designing the power distribution system for a new industrial facility is to clearly define the performance that system is expected to deliver. Fortunately for electric power engineers. for industrial facilities in North and South America. Specifically. is that these component ratings and the so-called “oneline arrangement”. Of these. A key consideration. It’s not difficult to design a system that has inherent capacity for growth. there may be no such thing as a perfect design. the frequency is almost certainly going to be 60Hz (although a few older facilities operating at 25Hz and 40Hz. The real problem faced by the power system engineer is more likely to be either justifying capacity for expansion in the initial design. design is a collection of compromises. Powell. dating back to the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It must be emphasized that there is no formula that automatically guarantees a perfect industrial system design. then the process of design can focus on arriving at costeffective solutions to deliver that performance. The selection of frequency also then drives the range and selection of voltage. If the system is described first in terms of performance. engineers have to make rating choices with respect to frequency. When the time comes to address the issue of expansion. the equipment used to actually construct the electrical distribution infrastructure in an industrial plant has been highly commoditized to the point where it is available in standard unit ratings. 4. These challenges are often more political than technical. Also.

Or. Maintenance is a major consideration in this analysis. For example. Powell. in the interest of time it may not be possible to fully develop the underlying basis for each criterion. In fact. if electric power is required in the process to maintain environmental controls. the direct impact of an electrical interruption typically is that products cannot be manufactured during the outage. the key issue is how the cost of an electrical service interruption impacts on the cost of doing business. and an uncontrolled hard stop due to a power interruption could lead to an explosion. And in particular. It also should be stated that the criteria present here are all based on fundamental electrical physics. and the cost of the raw materials. There is a branch of electric power engineering that specializes in the study of component failures. that high availability comes at the cost of significant capital investment and an aggressive maintenance program. © 2008 Louie J. There may also be a need to retune the manufacturing process when production resumes. Methods are available to use this information to make informed decisions about alternate system arrangements based on achieving the highest statistical expectation of electrical system availability. Product in process may be spoiled and have to be discarded. in discrete manufacturing. but in reality that reference suggests alternatives rather than one ideal solution to serving the needs of an industrial process. an unexpected interruption could result in release of hazardous materials with both legal and economic consequences. The impact of an electrical service interruption on a continuous process application may be more severe. and also because it is necessary to take equipment out of service to perform maintenance. The n-1 concept. labor and electrical energy invested in that unsalable product adds to the cost of the interruption. Reliability Considerations Every component in an electrical system is a candidate for failure.Industrial Plants. and those maintenance outages may have an impact on the overall availability of the electrical system. it may not be justifiable in every instance. requiring that a portion of the process be rebuilt before production can resume. A more insidious risk is that the electrical interruption could damage the process in some way – a good example might be a plastics extrusion process in which material freezes during the interruption. There is also an unapplied labor cost (employees who cannot actually do anything productive but who are still collecting wages). most industrial facilities can be adequately designed using the n-1 concept. Some chemical processes have inherent instabilities during startup and shutdown. The accounting cost of the interruption is primarily the margin on product NOT produced during the outage. PE Page 4 Rev 1 . there is the risk that the electrical interruption could cascade into a catastrophic failure. it is possible to achieve a very high overall system availability. However. Finally. resulting in even more waste product. Using the analytical approach. both because projected expectations of component reliability are predicated on the presumption that those components are maintained regularly. While an analytical approach to assessing reliability is intellectually interesting. Whether those costs are justifiable depends on the nature of the industrial process that the electrical system must support. assessing the statistical probability of failure together with the expected time required to repair components. However. (the “Red Book”).

it would be very unusual for circumstances to provide two completely independent sources of power in one geographic location. for design purposes they are considered to be a group. That suggests that the double-ended arrangement should also be applied to whatever primary system supplies this substation. The second assumption is that while each component has its own inherent failure characteristic. and power could still be supplied to loads on the critical bus. Obviously. a transformer. A simple. and in fact most industrial system do just that. Fig 2 – Simple Double-Ended Substation In this arrangement. and a load bus.n-1 is the notion that every component of an electrical system is a candidate for failure. transformer or breaker could fail. transformer or breaker results in an inability to supply power to loads served from the bus. however. and still provide power to important loads. and the connection between the transformer and the secondary breaker are actually independent. or perhaps logical groups of components to fail. Failure of any one is addressed through redundancy of the entire group. so practical designs employ redundancy in a way that allows individual components. practical designs group components. So while the transformer. © 2008 Louie J. There are three important assumptions embedded in this simple example. For example. the concept of redundancy would extend as far back into that system as practical. Fig 1 – Simple single-ended substation Fig 1 depicts a single-ended substation consisting of a primary switch. n-1 solution to enhancing the reliability of this design is shown in figure 2. then the system must be designed in a way that allows it to deliver power to all important loads assuming the failure of every component. the connection between the primary switch and the transformer. Ideally. a secondary breaker. Powell. the likelihood that multiple components will fail simultaneously is remote. any switch. One has to do with the system that supplies power upstream of the primary switch. Obviously. there is a limit to how far that redundancy can go. PE Page 5 Rev 1 . Failure of the primary switch.

that then raises two additional questions. and therefore increasingly costly. while figure 4 might be reserved for a “mission critical facility” such as a data center or a hospital surgical suite. Fig 4. First. or vaults (represented by the dashed line). for example. Hence. a more practical design might be the arrangement shown in fig 3. Of course. As a practical matter. Addressing these two concerns leads to the arrangement of figure 4. it is possible that a failure on one half of the load bus might actually jeopardize the other half in spite of the fact that the breaker is present. This example show how an intuitive approach to reliability. can evolve into an increasingly complex. and arcs generate a lot of combustible and potentially conductive gas. © 2008 Louie J. the arrangements in figures 1 and 2 are relatively typical of electrical system designs supporting commercial applications – offices and shopping. Second. it is assumed that the load bus itself is not subject to failure. Double-Ended Substation with Dual Tie Breakers in Separate Vaults In this design. considering the n-1 principle. system design. Figure 3 is typical of what might be found in a great many discrete manufacturing and even continuous process industrial applications. electrical failures involve arcing. Therefore. the single time breaker has been replaced with two breakers.Third. so that an ordinary electrical failure in one cannot communicate to the other. Powell. installation of a tie breaker in the load bus allows a failure to occur on one half of the load bus without affecting the other half. consideration also has to be give to the possibility that the tie breaker itself could fail. and of course that’s not a realistic assumption. and the two halves of the double-ended substation have been placed in separate rooms. Fig 3 – Double-Ended Substation with a Tie Breaker In this instance. PE Page 6 Rev 1 .

Redundancy 10000000 1000000 100000 MTTF 10000 1000 100 10 1 1 2 3 4 Num ber of Transform ers Fig 6 – Improvement in Reliability due to Multiple Transformers in Parallel Figure 6 shows the calculated mean-time to failure for a hypothetical system served by one. “low voltage” refers to applications operating at 1000 volts or below. This is not a casual decision. Figure 5 shows a typical double-ended medium voltage industrial substation that also feeds multiple double-ended low voltage substations. two. 13. three or four transformers. and (less frequently) 34.5kV. but the improvement associated with a third or fourth transformer is inconsequential. Powell.16kV. PE Page 7 Rev 1 . “medium voltage” refers to applications operating at voltages greater than 1000 volts but lower than 72kV. © 2008 Louie J. Typical low voltage industrial applications are at 480v. and in fact is based on an important principle that can be found through a more analytical approach to reliability. Typical industrial medium voltage applications include 4. 1 Under ANSI standards. and shows that adding a second transformer makes a dramatic improvement in calculated mean-time-to-failure. That principle is that the amount of improvement caused by redundancy decreases dramatically as the number of layers of redundancy increases. and illustrates how the concept of double-ending and redundancy can be extended upstream from the load toward the source of electric power. Double-ended arrangements are also very commonly seen in medium voltage2 systems.8kV. 2 Under ANSI standards. The designs shown here call for only one layer of redundancy.Fig 5 – A Double-Ended Medium Voltage bus feeding a double-ended low-voltage substation The double-ended substation shown in figures 2-4 is very typical of low voltage1 substations in industrial or commercial applications.

one single-ended low voltage substation (shown in blue) has been set up to spare four other single-ended substations. ethylene plants etc) is there a justification for additional redundancy. In those situations. this arrangement could be extended to any number of other substations if there is sufficient load in the vicinity to justify additional capacity. In theory. The answer to this dilemma is the medium voltage “synchronizing bus” design. Only in very usual cases (data centers. Fig 7 – Low voltage sparing arrangement In figure 7. While the majority of industrial applications utilize simple double-ended low-voltage substations. a design that originated in the automotive industry may have a more attractive initial cost. Powell.Most industrial applications are therefore served using designs that call for only one layer of redundancy. most notably pulp and paper but also petrochemical. The problem that often occurs with generators is that their presence causes a dramatic increase in the short circuit current available on the system. In this arrangement. One is the low voltage sparing arrangement. PE Page 8 Rev 1 . In some industries. and in those instances that additional redundancy is most commonly in the form of local emergency generation that provides a source of energy that is independent of a commercial utility supplier. so there is a desire for the electrical output of the generator(s) to be utilized at a point in the process that is close to where the steam is utilized. so an arrangement is require that permits the generator(s) to be integrated while providing control over short circuit duties. a special concern exists in applications where the concentration of load is heavy enough to require multiple substations to meet thermal requirements. There are two special arrangements that need to be mentioned here for completeness. This generation is typically integrated into the thermal cycle of the process (it is classic “cogeneration” in that steam is produced that is used to both generate electricity and to perform some function in the process). there is a need to integrate local generation. the breakers connecting the sparing bus to the individual load buses are normally open in order to keep the short circuit levels within reason. the impact of a maintenance shutdown is localized to the one area immediately associated with both the steam and electrical loads on that boiler. in that way. © 2008 Louie J.

All electrical components have a fundamental thermal rating. © 2008 Louie J. loads are close enough to constant that one need not be concerned with intermittent loading. short circuit levels and system protection. usually expressed in terms of continuous amperes or kVA. Steady State Performance Considerations The power system in an industrial facility is largely passive. It is important to recognize that the thermal stress on electrical system components is related to the current flow through the electrical conductors making up those components. In most industrial applications. motor starting. it may be necessary to define the thermal duty as part of the specification that the component manufacturer is expected to meet. and in particular more attention to concerns relating to steady-state loading. Powell. Occasionally. For convenience. there is an implied assumption of rated voltage. and then have receive a management request to operate at 115% of design capacity one year later. so it is important that careful attention be given to several aspects of steady state operation. If those issues do arise. In extreme cases. But is can also be a very powerful tool in addressing design challenges in system with cogeneration integrated with the process. guidance can often be found in standards. and rely on the manufacturer’s understanding of the fundamental physics of his equipment to offer assurances that their proposed design is adequate. one will see a rating expressed in kilowatts (or some multiple of kW). That rating describes how much power can flow through the component without exceeding a design temperature rise in an environment where the ambient temperature falls within the constraints defined by the standards against which the component was designed. It’s not at all unusual for a facility to be commissioned one year. PE Page 9 Rev 1 . The most important is that the thermal ratings of the components must be adequate to handle the load that will be imposed on the electrical system by the process. thermal cycling and related issues. And here the challenge of predicting the future is important. And that’s just the beginning.G Fig 8 – Medium Voltage Synchronizing Bus Arrangement The synchronizing bus arrangement requires more careful consideration during the design phase. One should take care to use the actual kVA rating of the generator rather than the kW rating of the prime mover. thermal ratings are expressed either in amperes or kVA. Most often this is associated with generators as is based on the mechanical output of the prime mover. in the case of kVA rating.

and also offers the power system engineer a number of design options. not only does the design provide enhanced (n-1) reliability. it also has the ability to accommodate 87% load growth. o Solution D: Double-ended substation. and the incremental installation cost of the second unit. 750kVA transformers with provision for future 50% forced-cooled capability. 750kVA transformer ratings The total capacity of the two transformers is 1500kVA. or short circuits. Other transformers have other force-cooled ratings. may be equipped with supplemental cooling provisions that increase the continuous thermal ratings of the basic component carcass. but with a singlecontingency failure risk.The fundamental principle is that loading should never exceed the rated thermal capacity of individual system components under steady state conditions. and it is appropriate to consult both manufacturer’s specifications and standards to determine what the actual forcecooled ratings of a specific transformer will be. outdoor oil filled transformers typically have a fan-cooled rating that is 30 higher than the base rating. This design offers enhanced reliability. then that double ended enhancement would have a cost of approximately twice that of the single-ended design. 500kVA transformers with 50% force-cooled capability This design offers identically the same loading and reliability performance as B. Fortunately. unless these conditions occur frequently enough to be considered a cycling load. Powell. For example. most notably transformers. Earlier. Some electrical components. o Solution B: Double-ended substation. © 2008 Louie J. PE Page 10 Rev 1 . the double-ended substation (figure 2) was suggested as a reliability enhancement over the single-ended substation (figure 1). but it will cost only slightly more than A. and an initial assessment is that the incremental reliability comes at a price premium of 100%. 1000 kVA transformer rating This solution provides 20% margin for future growth. There are several potential ways to serve this load: o Solution A: Single-ended substation. But it also offers the ability to expand the load capability to 281% of the initial requirement with the addition of relatively inexpensive accessories and with no additional footprint requirements in the future. o Solution C: Double-ended substation. the ability to manipulate thermal ratings significantly changes that assessment. The premium will be associated with the addition of forced cooling. Since cost is approximately proportional to the installed kVA rating. Consider the case of a low voltage unit substation that is designed to carry a projected initial load of 800 kVA. Therefore. it will cost about 50% more than A. One does not normally have to be concerned about exceeding continuous thermal ratings under abnormal conditions such as motor starting or other impact loading. an initial ability to accommodate 87% load growth and at a cost that is only slightly more than solution B. If all of the components have the same rating.

The voltage at the 480v bus with rated voltage on the. low voltage breakers. it was assumed that the transformer(s) would be the most costly components of any design. The torque produced by an induction motor. PE Fig 9 – Power flow solution for a fully-loaded double ended substation. the motor will produce about 109% rated torque. Motors typically have voltage ratings that are slightly lower than the nominal ratings of the corresponding voltages in a system. cables. © 2008 Louie J. and that ratings could be chosen for other components (switches. In this instance.In this example. Fortunately. Thus. But it is still incumbent on the power system engineer to design a distribution system that will deliver a reasonable voltage to the terminals of motors during all steady state operating conditions. most motors are oversized for their mechanical loads. Figure 9 shows this condition in a power flow solution. etc) that could accommodate any of the rating options available with transformers. A design “rule of thumb” that has worked reasonably well is that systems generally can withstand sustained voltages down to about 95% of rated during “normal” operations. It is not necessary that motors always produce 100% rated torque. of course. Page 11 Rev 1 . But it is necessary that motors produce more torque than is required by the loads that they are driving. motors designed for application on a 480 volt system commonly have a 460 volt rating. it would be appropriate to test these assumptions. the motor will be able to produce rated torque with up to 4% voltage drop in the feeder cables. Voltage spread The most common load served by the power system in an industrial facility is motors. In an actual example. So if a 460 volt motor is applied on a system where the applied voltage is 480v. in the example above. In this context. For example. each with a base rating of 500kVA. or one of several modes that might have been envisioned as a possible mode of operation at the time the system was designed. for example. the load was represented as one 100 horsepower motor plus an aggregation of other loads totaling 1393kVA at 93% power factor. Or conversely. is proportional to the square of applied voltage. the most common variety used in industry. Powell. it would be necessary that the system deliver at least 95% rated voltage at the terminals of motors for this heavy load condition for the design to be considered adequate. Therefore.3 3 See appendix I for an explanation of the information in this figure. solution C involves a potential future load of 1500kVA on two paralleled transformers. “normal” means either the normally intended mode of operation.

While it may be possible to perform much of the analysis required to determine the thermal ratings of system components using a simple spreadsheet. With the primary voltage depressed 5%. well below the threshold of acceptability. That is especially true if the design involves significant lengths of feeder cables or a medium-voltage synchronizing bus design. that would equate with 95. increases in load tend to amplify voltage drop.480 reactive locally (at the 480 v bus). That can be demonstrated quite BUS-1 dramatically by adding a capacitor bank to the system simulated in figure 9.7% of rated motor voltage leading to about 92% rated torque.000) 0. The only accurate way to assess these considerations is by computer simulation that can deal with the nonlinear equations required to describe the performance of those loads One solution to the possible problem presented in this example is to take advantage of the voltage taps that are usually present on transformers.480 0.517 (90. it is not necessary for the entire reactive demand to be supplied from the primary.766) Fig 10. 0 It has been said that “vars don’t travel well”.000 (500. 13. 97 4@ -4 . This simulation shows that a 500kVAR capacitor bank causes the voltage at the 480v.5% boost position would cause the secondary voltage in this example to be a completely acceptable 97. the 2. .759 703.800 13.759 1.845) 1407. It might be possible to arrive at a conclusion that if the combination of reduced primary voltage and heavy loading is not likely to occur frequently enough to worry about this being unacceptable performance.8% of the nominal 480 volt value.2% of rated.000 (474. 1300. This illustrates a critical point. bus to be higher. The reactive demand of the 480v loads is unchanged. Powell. Motors have a constant kVA characteristic in response to changes in bus voltage. However. The reason for this is that motors and other actual power system loads are non-linear.087 (43.543) (34.5% boost tap would elevate the secondary voltage to 91. Power flow solution with the addition of a 500kVAR capacitor bank © 2008 Louie J. Moving the transformer taps to the 2.5 .923) 703. That’s a profound consideration.680) 81.923) (34. Voltage spread is primarily a function of reactive power flow through system inductive reactance.800 because the capacitor bank supplies some of that 0.543 (90. PE Page 12 Rev 1 0. the voltage delivered to the secondary would be 89. thereby reducing the amount of voltage drop experienced in the BUS-2 transformers (181. 0 00 @ 0.543) 690. Designing the power system in a way that provides local reactive sources helps improve the overall voltage profile of a system. As a result.transformer primaries were depressed to 95% of rated. it is not possible to gain complete insight into the performance of a power system without using a true power flow model.543 690.3% with rated voltage on the primary.

they found that the actual savings that would result from switching from existing © 2008 Louie J. If there are sources of harmonic currents in the system such that there is a need for the capacitors to be configured as harmonic filters. The fact is that the components that make up the power system (mainly switchgear. it is important that the process of designing the industrial system anticipate the need to manage reactive power demand on the host utility. In the late 1970’s. Certainly. with a practical upper limit usually considered to be about 103% of rated. and the greatest opportunity for improving overall operating efficiency is in the way that motors are selected to meet individual process requirements. or it may be formulated in other ways. However. there may not be a lot that can be done with the power distribution system itself to enhance operating efficiency. a question that is often debated is what is the optimum location of power factor capacitors. But when they did the analysis. Most losses are incurred in motors. then resistance and real power determine the angle of the voltage phasors. One of the more subtle approaches is to define demand limit in terms of total apparent power (MVA). the acceptable spread of steady-state voltage is commonly 95% to 103%. That said. transformer and cables) are quite efficient and are responsible for only a very small fraction of the losses incurred by typical industrial systems. however. If power factor capacitors are needed to address steady state voltage spread and to relieve thermal loading in cables and transformers. It’s not unusual for system to operate with elevated voltages. then the optimum solution is to apply capacitors at the terminals of loads and arrange for them to be switched on and off with their associated loads. then the optimum solution is to install one capacitor bank on the load-side of the revenue meter. That is.If inductance and vars determine voltage drop and the magnitude of voltage. and those limitations may necessitate the addition of other capacitor banks in order to achieve the overall power factor improvement target for the system. In recent years. PE Page 13 Rev 1 . while setting the power consumption measurement on real power component of consumed energy (kilowatthours). and with many typical reactive penalty arrangements. And there are exceptions to each of these general rules. Voltage angle is normally not a concern in the design of industrial power systems. It should be noted. The answers are: If the power factor capacitor is needed ONLY to reduce the reactive demand at the point of metering. Powell. Must electric utilities impose a penalty on industrial customers with low power factor. the opportunity exists to select between traditional motor designs and those with reduced losses. That penalty may be expressed directly in terms of power factor. the economic payback is less than one year. Steady-state supply and management of reactive power is also an economic consideration. that there are limitations in the amount of capacitance that may be switched in combination with motors. Incidentally. the designer also must be sensitive to the fact that the sustained voltage cannot be too high. The concern that is usually most vexing is designing the system to deliver at least 95% of rated voltage everywhere and at all times. many industrials were tempted by the promise of economic savings. industry has become much more concerned about efficiency and losses. when manufacturers started offering higher efficiency motors. Ordinary capacitor banks are a relatively inexpensive way to supply and manage steady-state reactive power. then the optimum solutions will usually be to provide the smallest number of capacitor banks possible. Regardless of how it is done. and operating economy clearly needs to be taken into account in designing industrial power distribution systems.

or “crowding” the bucket back toward the cab. But because motors come in standard frame sizes. the power input to a rolling mill increases sharply when the raw stock enters the mill. the use of higher efficiency motors does appear to make economic sense when new systems are being built. Then. o Even some continuous loads have cyclical nature. o In the metal rolling industry.standard motors to higher efficiency motors of the same rating would not pay for the cost of retiring the older machines and buying new motors. draglines have a dramatically cyclical characteristic. Real power peaks as the shovel is digging into the bank. and of course the load that is of interest is the impact load. The most common example of impact loading is motor starting. but then drops and may actually reverse direction as the bucket is emptied. and motors that are oversized relative to the actual mechanical requirements of the load they drive will incur higher energy losses. Impact Loading Impact loading is a generic term for the concerns associated with sudden changes in electrical load. Motors are most efficient when they are operated at a point fairly close to their electrical ratings. o The load associated with dynomometers (in the automotive industry) can swing between net-motoring and net-generating. The principle that seems to be involved here is that the mechanical engineer responsible for the driven load adds a margin when specifying the brake-horsepower requirement of the load. Voltage change (%) ≈ ∆MVAR × 100 MVAshort circuit [1] © 2008 Louie J. the application is handed of to an electrical engineer who adds an additional margin to determine the theoretical rating of the motor. One way to quickly approximate the effect of a change in reactive demand is equation [1]. Reactive power also goes through a cycle that may be a bit less extreme. but there are other fairly common examples in industry. the motor that is actually chosen will be larger than the theoretical rating. a nonparochial design process in which there is a single assessment of margin and economy would help avoid this kind of problem. the reactive demand of a slab mill increased 70MVAR in a few seconds. A more important consideration is that the motor must be sized properly for the load. However. o In the mining industry. Again. The second is the pervasive concern for short circuits. In one rather notorious instance. Dynamic Performance Considerations The third major set of considerations for the designer of an industrial electrical distribution system relate to system performance during or in response to changes in dynamic changes on the system. the reactive swing may be of far greater concern than the real power impact. For typical industrial systems there are two general sets of concerns. Powell. The major concern with impact loading is for how the load affects voltage. Obviously. PE Page 14 Rev 1 . but that may actually be more significant because of the effect on voltage. One relates to motor starting or other impact loads. Reciprocating compressors are notorious for applying a pulsating demand on the electrical system. The result is a process that almost certainly will lead to oversized motors..

44% 17.4 MVA 0. Typical. traditional induction motors have starting currents that are about six times normal full load current. If a more exact numerical assessment is required.In this equation. the voltage change will be [3] Voltage change (%) ≈ 0. Today. of course. MVAshort circuit is the short circuit “stiffness” at the point where the impact load is applied. and the other with the motor represented by its starting impedance. and the voltage change is relative to the steady-state voltage that existed prior to application of the impact. then it is again necessary to employ a system power flow model to simulate the conditions that exist before and after the application of an impact load. However. The power factor of motor starting current tends to be in the range of 15-20%. it remains a convenience for system planners to think in terms of the equivalent short circuit MVA level.4 [4] Another way to arrive at an estimate of the voltage impact from motor starting is by performing two successive power flow simulations.0575 [2] When starting. More commonly.6 × 100 ≈ 3. it is possible to arrive at a quick estimate of the voltage dip that will accompany starting of an induction motor.75% on their own base.6 MVAR Therefore. Standard low voltage unit substation transformers have an impedance of 5. circuit breaker standards define breaker short circuit ratings in amperes. a step change of 10MVAR would lead to a 2% voltage change on a system with a 500MVA short circuit stiffness4. where MVAshort circuit = kAshort circuit × kV × 3 . so Stiffness = 2 × 500 = 17. one without the motor. Synchronous motors tend to have lower starting currents – perhaps four to five times full load. for example.391 kVA = 17.5 times full load. for variable speed applications) have significantly lower starting impacts. but not always. In the past. it was routine to express short circuit levels in terms of MVA. So. And the magnitude of the starting current is several times the rated full load current of the motor. The short circuit stiffness can be approximated by dividing the transformer kVA by the transformer impedance. so the initial demand of the motor is predominantly reactive. from [1]. and it is necessary to calculate short circuit levels in compatible terms. Powell. the concern is for starting of motors. And. a typical 100 horsepower motor will impose an impact load on the system of ∆Load = 6 × rated kVA = 600 kvar = 0. PE Page 15 Rev 1 4 . © 2008 Louie J. Using equation [1]. Special “soft start” motors can be specified that have starting currents as low as three times full load. motors that are served through electronic power converters (typically. For the sake of consistency. while the starting current of higher-efficiency motors can be as high as 8. consider the system depicted in the power flow solution in figure 9 consisting of two 500kVA transformers supplying a 100 horsepower motor.

Generally.0 0.000) 1219.939 (310.691) (250. 00 0 BUS-1 (310.939 699.Before start (620. 99 9@ @ Page 16 Rev 1 0.a 3. Note also that this answer is very close to that calculated by the quick approximation formula [1].691) 677.670) (597. consider the example presented in figure 11.6% of rated.150) 664.374) MSHp = 100 MSPF = 12% Fig 11 – Steady-state power flow simulations of a system before and after starting a motor Note that the simulations show that starting the motor will cause the voltage to dip from 95% of rated to 91. PE 0. That leads to the question of whether power factor capacitors might also help with impact loading.300) 1328.000 650.198 After start 0. The problem of motor starting is a special case of the more general problem of impact loading.000 (502. To illustrate that point.670) 699. © 2008 Louie J. The answer. the major issue involved in impact loading is the increase in reactive loading. 0 1.676 0.008) 135. It was noted in the discussion of steady state loading that addition of power factor capacitors can be an effective means to address voltage spread problems. although there are instances in which changes in real power loading can be just as disruptive.150) 664.58% dip.099 BUS-1 (597.420 (469. 0 .000) 650.099 (502..000) (250. in general. BUS-2 BUS-2 1300.9 95 0@ -4 . 91 6@ -3 .932 (536. is that capacitors are not helpful by themselves.000 (500.676 677. Powell. but with a 500kVAR capacitor bank applied on the 480v bus.

368 694. 00 BUS-1 (59. 0 .68%.581 BUS-1 (363.2 0.58% to 3.417) 139. 0 1.506) (363. 97 BUS-2 BUS-2 1300. but rather is an actual consequence of the physics of the electrical circuit.68%.and post-impact voltage by about the same amount compared with the example of figure 11.3%.9% of rated to 94. while a capacitor bank is most helpful in addressing steady-state voltage profile issues.506) 694. Instead. dynamic source of reactive support is required to address voltage dips associated with impact loading.000 (444. the effect of the capacitor bank is to change the baseline from which the dip occurs.Steady-state power flow simulations of a system before and after starting a motor with a capacitor bank supporting system voltage This example shows that the starting the motor will cause the voltage to drop from 97.838) 1217. This is not a numerical oddity. the capacitor will be less able to provide reactive support of voltage. or a change of 3.627) 678.1 0.121 (468.000) 0.979) 1323. First. it may actually aggravate impact-related voltage issues.580) (10. That is. A power factor capacitor is passive shunt device –an impedance. 94 3@ -4 .000 (294. The reactive flow in the capacitor is directly proportional to the square of the voltage applied across the capacitor – and as the bus voltage is depressed by the impact load of the starting motor.581 (294.223 9@ -4 . the presence of the capacitor elevates both the pre.989) 661. The simplest example would be to associate a © 2008 Louie J.324 (565. More significantly.580) 650.Before starting (119.000 650.123) 0.223 678. 99 9@ 0.163 After starting 0@ 0.368 (59.000 (478. Powell. the presence of capacitors appears to actually amplify the magnitude of the voltage dip – from 3. PE Page 17 Rev 1 0. There are two important points to note here. A dynamic reactive source is one that provides progressively greater reactive support as the bus voltage becomes lower. Hence.000 (500.627) (10.989) 661.548) MSHp = 100 MSPF = 12% Fig 12 .

there is one very notable exception to that generalization. The exact threshold is a variable. those fault interrupting devices must be rated to interrupt the short circuit currents that the system is capable of producing. transient depressions of system voltage cause motors to produce less mechanical torque. The currents that flow into a short circuit are much higher than normal load currents. a fault can be a destructive event that results in a significant energy release at the point of the fault and doing considerable damage to the components that make up the power system. it is common to limit the lowest voltage under motor starting conditions to be no lower than 80% of rated system voltage. Short Circuits Short circuits (faults) are relatively common occurrences on electric power systems. The most notable examples of this problem are very slow speed applications such as autogenous grinders in the mining industry and cement kiln drives. PE Page 18 Rev 1 . or perhaps even a few seconds. Transient voltage dips are an unavoidable consequence of step loading and motor starting. and this can result in significant torque transients when the voltage dip is corrected. Whether that is actually a problem really depends on how long the transient voltage depression lasts. a voltage dip that lasts only a few cycles of time. Like steady-state voltage spread. On that basis. Powell. but they may be more sensitive to voltage dips than magnetically latched contactors and may require special provisions to assure ridethrough. it is also possible to purchase solid-state reactive compensators that can react very quickly to changes in reactive loading. The other issue is that the instantaneous magnitude of voltage drops low enough to cause some kind of magnetically-latched control device to drop out. but the traditional rule of thumb is that limiting the instantaneous magnitude of voltage to no less than about 75% of rated should avoid contactor dropout. The reduction in torque can cause some slow-speed mechanical systems to slow down sufficiently that there is a significant difference between the phasor angle of the residual magnetic field in the motor and the system voltage. it is important to know whether there is really a problem. The primary means of protective against short circuits is by means of protection devices – sensors and relays in combination with circuit breakers. Before opting for a solution to transient voltage disturbances. Alternatively. As a result. There are really two separate issues involved in answering that question. Synchronous motors are also effective as dynamic sources of reactive support. and that is subsequently removed from the system after the motor accelerates to rated speed. Every power system must be equipped with fault interrupting devices that are intended to automatically open in the event of short circuits. In most instances. As the magnitude of the potential short circuit currents that a system can produce increases. will not cause any problems with operating motors. However. © 2008 Louie J. it is necessary to resort to larger (and therefore more expensive) circuit breakers that have the rated capability to interrupt those higher currents. The most traditional example of this is that motor starter contactors will open if the applied bus voltage drops too low. Computers and PLCs also have an undervoltage drop-out characteristic. And under the National Electric Code.switched capacitor with the starting motor – a capacitor that is applied at the instant that the motor contactor is closed.

So designing a system to address short circuits is a challenge in balancing these competing objectives. one designs a system to serve identified loads. the audible noise that accompanies the short circuit. are factors that limit the maximum short circuit stiffness. Instead. Motors applied through power converters (as adjustable speed drives) have a significantly lower impact upon starting that do single-speed motors with across-the-line start. the ability to start motors is a major factor driving the required short circuit level (and hence. First. The first is that the magnitude of load drives the selection of transformer ratings. Powell. In addition. there is an advantage to design for a larger number of smaller substations instead of combining all loads on a small number of larger substations. then the ratings of the transformers supplying a system are critical. As noted earlier. So. While the size of individual motors is driven by process non-electrical process considerations and generally has to be accepted as a given. process load requirements dictate the size of motors and other cyclic loads. PE Page 19 Rev 1 . the power engineer may be able to influence the choice of starting means for those larger motors. one should design the system for a maximum available short circuit level of about 250MVA. the magnitude of available short circuit current comes down to the Thevenin equivalent driving point impedance at each point in the system – and lower impedances mean higher short circuit currents. but there are also concerns with the concussive impact of a fault. Obviously. as discussed earlier. Second. practiced system designers more typically talk in terms of MVA in order to eliminate system voltage from consideration.In addition. the required rating of substation transformers). Ultimately. and the possibility of shrapnel being projected away from the fault point. with regard to unit substations. But transformer rating is also closely tied to the load to be served by the system. Not only does the arc associate with a short circuit throw off a significant amount of radiant heat. there are both economic and real estate penalties in using a larger number of substations. Since the actual impedance of a transformer is primarily determined by its rating. in many instances the ability to throttle back the speed of the drive translates © 2008 Louie J. and these in turn determine the minimum short circuit stiffness that the system must have to be able to cope with those loads. and the available short circuit level is a consequence of that selection. That leads to an important but seldom documented observation: in an ideal system. one generally does not design a system to achieve a desired short circuit level. But the desire to choose lower-rated (and therefore less costly) switchgear. There are two important implications from this observation. and then has to deal with the short circuit level that is necessary to support those loads That observation in turn leads to several conclusions about how loads should be served. combined with the desire to minimize arc flash hazards. That is. if the load that must be served is 10MVA. but the ratings of transformers is probably the most important. for example. While this ratio can be expressed in terms of current (amperes). in recent years engineers have become much more aware of the potential hazard to individuals in the vicinity of a short circuit. the available short circuit will be in the neighborhood of 25 times the maximum load to be served by that system. There are a number of factors that have a bearing on the available short circuit current – the presence and ratings of motors and generators and the voltage are significant. so the designer is faced with a tradeoff. That is because substations built around transformers with lower ratings have lower available short circuit currents.

8kV.4kV through 6. that voltage is generally viewed as obsolete. and it is difficult to purchase switchgear designed specifically for 2.8kV is occasionally seen as a distribution voltage. the ideal system voltage is also determined by that load. 2.9kV although higher voltage ratings are seen on very large machines.9kV and 13.8kV.4kV used to be a relatively common system voltage. There are also other options for reducing the starting impact of larger motors.000 HP or larger).16kV might be a good voltage choice.2 kV are voltages used by distribution utilities in some areas. especially in the pulp and paper industry.into savings in energy consumption. and could be a practical motor voltage when the motor is applied through a captive transformer served from a higher-voltage bus.2kV Class (6. so there selection has to be part of an overall trade-off evaluation. 4. Obviously. It is generally not an ideal voltage for industrial distribution. Under ANSI standards. 4. o 12. and 4. Under ANSI standards.16kV) 15kV Class (13. Powell. o The technical and economic tradeoffs involved in motor design result in the situation where the optimum machine voltages tend to range from 2. and it may be necessary to resort to a higher voltage in order to select commercially available switchgear for a desired fault level.16kV switchgear has a maximum voltage rating of 4.9kV might appear to be an ideal voltage for a system serving a large population of motors. But if the load to be served is 15MVA. Typically. the availability of short circuit ratings in medium voltage switchgear is tied to voltage level (Table 1).9kV) 5kV Class (4.8kV requires at least 7. PE Page 20 Rev 1 . for example.76kV and may not be applied at 4. if the load to be served is 10MVA. On very large motors (typically 10. then the optimum fault level is 250MVA. applying larger motors through adjustable speed power converters may be an attractive option. that voltage has not been well supported by switchgear manufacturers. Table 1 – Typical Short Circuit Ratings of Medium Voltage Circuit Breakers under ANSI Standards Short Circuit Rating Voltage Rating 7. While 6. Today. these voltages are only used in industrial systems when those systems are being fed © 2008 Louie J. most typically. while also reducing the magnitude of the impact. Motor starting reactors and autotransformers are an old solution that still works quite well.4kV.4kV may still be an economically appealing voltage for motors. However. o 4. That arrangement transfers the starting impact of the motor to a higher voltage bus that almost certainly will have a higher available short circuit level.2kV class switchgear.8kV) 250 MVA 350 MVA 500 MVA 750 MVA 1000 MVA 1500 MVA X X X X X X X So. the optimum fault level will be 375MVA and one could choose between 6. There are a few special voltage considerations worth mentioning: o 2. these solutions require capital investment and real estate. Therefore. it is not uncommon to see the motor applied on a dedicated “captive transformer”. Therefore. The second major observation derived from the “25:1” rule is that because the available short circuit level is a consequence of the load that must be served. 15kV switchgear is used.47kV and 13.

Speed is another matter. Even so. reliability and selectivity can generally be achieved by applying traditional.directly from the distribution utility at those voltages and without intervening transformers. time-current curves are always log-log plots.3 sec current Fig 13 – Selective Coordination of Overcurrent Protection Devices5. 2. Powell. It’s important to recognize that this is a traditional measure. every time. the speed of the protection system itself is a measure of the quality of system design. Economy – protection must be achieved at the lowest practical cost. economy. Protection Considerations The final aspect of system design is protection. 5 By tradition. and references such as IEEE 241 – Recommended Practice for Protection and Coordination of Industrial and Commercial Power Systems (the “Buff Book”) are highly recommended.3 sec 0. in order to achieve selectivity. but the portion is isolated must be as small as practical. That desire may lead to the application of faster protective functions that. 4. Of these. Page 21 Rev 1 © 2008 Louie J.3 sec 0. These solutions are well documented in the technical literature. The ultimate test of a design is whether it can be easily and economically protected using simple. commercially available protection equipment. Speed of the protection system is primarily a consequence of the design of the system in combination with economy. The most common form of protection in an industrial system involves time overcurrent devices. could also distort traditional economics. well-tested protection solutions. 3. time D C B A 0. Hence. and in today’s world there may be a desire for faster fault clearing times to manage the energy release associated with arc flash. Selectivity – while the protection system must isolate portions of the system that have failed. A rule of thumb is that the protection system should contribute about 10% of the total cost of an industrial electrical distribution system (and the electrical distribution system itself should cost about 10% of the total capital investment in the industrial facility). Speed – the protection system should be as fast as possible while achieving the objectives of reliability and selectivity. and the traditional rule is that it should be possible to detect and clear a fault at any location in one second or less. even though the system may go for years with no events that require action by the protection system. There are four fundamental objectives that must be met by the protection system: 1. Reliability – the protection system must work as expected. the one-second criterion is still a valid measure of system performance. reliability and selectivity. PE .

then the limit of acceptable system design is one that can be adequately protected by this array of protective devices. and D is the secondary main breaker.Figure 13 illustrates an array of four protective devices. Finally. B is the substation feeder supporting the motor control center. if the one-second rule is to be met. However.9 seconds or less for the maximum fault. Note that it is still possible to achieve the maximum one second clearing time but only if devices C and D have a higher pickup sensitivity that devices A and B. Note that it would not be possible to insert any additional time-overcurrent protective devices into this system without causing the time delay associated with device D to exceed the one second criterion. Note that at the maximum fault level. in that instance the interpretation of the conclusion might differ because of differences in the kinds of equipment used to provide protection. Therefore. C and D. Therefore.. the time current curves have been redrawn with devices A and B having the same pickup sensitivity. the system must be designed to require no more than three layers of timeovercurrent backup protection at any voltage level. PE Page 22 Rev 1 . so that the slowest device (device D) will operate in 0. Device A is termed a “primary protective device” and includes an instantaneous overcurrent element. the time differential between the devices is 0. A. In Figure 15. that are arranged selectively. The pickup sensitivity of a protective device is related to the full load that it is designed to carry – for obvious reasons. and with devices C and D having different sensitivities. C is the tie breaker. Figure 13 could also be applied to a medium voltage system with fundamentally the same conclusion – there can be no more than three levels of time overcurrent backup protection in a well-designed system. there is one other criterion in the world of protection that provides insight into the quality of design of a system. while devices B. device A is in a motor control center. Here. Fig 14 – Low Voltage Substation that might Fig 14 depicts a typical double-ended low correspond to the protection in Fig 13. This time-current curve can then be used to translate the one-second criterion into a system design criterion – if this curve depicts the limit of acceptable system operation. C and D are time-overcurrent devices that provide backup protection in the event A fails to operate in addition to perhaps providing primary protection to other areas in the system. That consideration therefore discourages insertion of sub-buses or other complications into this system. B.3 seconds. voltage unit substation that might have protection characteristics such as those in figure 13. the © 2008 Louie J. the pickup sensitivity must be great than full load current. Powell.

“n-1”. the system specification should identify the target power factor that the owner wishes to achieve for the purpose of managing that penalty. Note that statements of reliability in “nines” is vague and not at all meaningful when designing a system. The System Performance Specification The “performance specification” does not have to be a long document. Power factor – power factor is important in system performance. Note also that it may necessary to establish different reliability targets for different components of the load. time D C B A 0. but it does need to explicitly define the expected range of parameters that may either be calculated as part of the design process. the backup breaker must have a significantly higher full load rating than the largest feeder breaker. However. the largest feeder breaker should be no larger than one-third the rating of the main breaker in a substation. a captive transformer connection for larger motors. Load to be served – load should be identified by process elements. eg. Expected voltage spread – including minimum and maximum steady-state voltage levels. © 2008 Louie J. Critical attributes of performance include: Reliability – “n-0”. and loads that would otherwise violate this rule should be viewed as candidates for special treatment. or that may be measured on the physical system after it is constructed. Powell. As a practical rule of thumb. if the host utility imposes a power factor penalty at the revenue meter. steady state voltage spread). and power factor improvement will mainly be needed to address other system performance issues (eg. but the power factor of loads will be what it will be. or for systems demanding a more rigorous approach to reliability.3 sec 0.message here is that in a well designed system. PE Page 23 Rev 1 .3 sec 0. a quantitative measure of reliability such as mean-time-to-failure (MTTF). Thermal rating limits – It would normally be assumed that power system components would require continuous thermal ratings that exceed their expected continuous loading.3 sec current Fig 15 – Feeders should have higher current ratings than mains.

Limits should be established for the minimum voltage that can be tolerated under expected impact load conditions. Note that the National Electrical Code may impose minimum required margins between electrical loading and ratings. That means that the minimum margin legally required between short circuit current and short circuit rating is only slightly greater than zero. Given the critical safety issues involved with short circuits. but more importantly. it is helpful to define in the specification the size of the largest motors that will expect service at. etc. including the maximum fault clearing time. The National Electrical Code requires that circuit breakers be rated to interrupt the maximum short circuit current that they will encounter in their application. In recent years. The system specification should clearly state the expected maximum radiated arc flash thermal energy rating for each voltage level in the system. whether protection will be applied on a per-phase basis (as opposed to an application in which one protective device monitors multiple phases). defining the margin at the outset eliminates second guessing about what should have been anticipated about provisions for future expansion. it may be appropriate to specify a minimum margin between loading and component limits. this thermal energy level must be coordinated with the maintenance procedures expected to be followed in the facility. and possibly exceed. for example. Specifying a minimum margin establishes the principle that there should be some margin. © 2008 Louie J. the target minimum coordinating time margin between fault protective devices. 480v versus 4. most industrial system designers prefer to specify a finite minimum design margin target (such as 10%).16kV. operators of industrial electrical systems have become acutely aware of the concerns associated with arc flash. While a limit on the minimum impact load voltage ultimately does provide guidance on how large motors should be started. but it is important that the system specification clearly define the expected modes of neutral grounding at each voltage level in the system. Powell. Obviously. and the specification should clearly delineate between margins mandated by the Code and additional margins that the owner/operator of the facility may be able to utilize for future growth. This material has not addressed the issue of system grounding. Various protection parameters need to be specified. the voltage dip specification. it is sometimes helpful to go one step further in the system specification to delineate horsepower thresholds that at least meet. That is. PE Page 24 Rev 1 .However. It is also helpful for the specification to define the minimum voltage level required for motors of various horsepower ratings.

Appendix I Several power flow diagrams have been included as figures in this material. The following defines the conventions used in preparing these diagrams. PE Page 25 Rev 1 . © 2008 Louie J. Powell.

In designing a system to address reliability. on the impact of an interruption in the supply of electric power to the process. management will demand that the cost be managed and potentially reduced. Safety 2. and the power system engineer usually has little influence over how the process consumes electric power. Maintainability 4. While these ratings may ultimately be related to o o o o o o o o o o o o o © 2008 Louie J.Review: Here are the major points you should remember from this course: o The power distribution system in an industrial facility is the responsibility of a power systems engineer. The four major objectives in the design of an industrial power distribution system are 1. elements are often grouped in a way that failure of one element requires that there be redundancy for the entire group. and the challenge to the power system engineer is to make informed decisions about frequency. Single-point failure modes should be identified. All electrical system components have thermal ratings that define the maximum loading they can withstand without overheating. one layer of redundancy is sufficient. Adding additional layers will add additional theoretical reliability. Powell. and in particular. The risk of failure can be minimized but never eliminated. In industry. it comes down to whether the cost of addressing a single-point failure mode exceeds the cost of living with that single-point failure if and when it does occur. There are significant differences in requirements between discrete manufacturing businesses and continuous process businesses. This is referred to as the “n-1” principle. The key to reliability is redundancy. the role of that power system is to deliver electric power to the process. In most instances. The overall architecture. what matters is whether the failure of a component results in failure of the electrical system to deliver power to the process. voltage. or one-line arrangement of the electrical system must be driven by the requirements of the manufacturing process it serves. the main advantage is to add insight into the elements contributing to reliability. Except for special instances in missioncritical facilities. PE Page 26 Rev 1 . but the incremental performance improvement generally does not justify the added cost. Adding one layer of redundancy greatly increases overall system reliability. and every component of the system is a candidate for eventual failure. Economy Industry constantly strives for growth. Ultimately. Power distribution systems are built up using standard components. it rarely contributes anything of value to the design process. and the power distribution system for an industrial manufacturing system will almost inevitably be called upon to support increases in the production at that facility. Reliability 3. The expression of that principle is that the most common “building block” in designing an industrial power system is the double-ended unit substation depicted in Figure 3. Predicting steady-state loading requirements while allowing for the uncertainties of load growth is a major challenge. and like any other cost of business. While assessing reliability numerically is interesting. Whether every single-point failure mode must be eliminated really depends on the requirements of the business. Ultimately. thermal capacity and short circuit capacity in selecting those components. However. electric power is a COST of doing business.

That criterion is based on the fact that the voltage rating of motors is typically less that the voltage rating of the system that supplies those motors. system are rated 460v. System voltage drop is a result of the interaction of the inductive reactance of the system components. in per unit of rated torque. Power engineers need to recognize that these ratings may be the mechanical output ratings of the generator prime mover (turbine. PE Page 27 Rev 1 . Some components (eg. In particular. or perhaps the manufacturer. Careful exploitation of these forced cooled ratings can result in considerable savings in capital investment. Most motor applications include design margins that mean that the motor is not actually required to produce rated torque. to determine how cyclic loading relates to the continuous thermal rating of power distribution system components. and taking care to more carefully match motor ratings with the actual mechanical torque requirements of their driven loads can result in an overall improvement in energy efficiency in a manufacturing process. The optimum location of those capacitors depends on the objective for adding them to the system design Capacitors intended mainly to reduce reactive demand at the point of revenue billing should be installed in one bank at a point adjacent to the point of metering. and need to also ascertain the actual MVA rating of the generator itself. Transformer voltage taps are helpful in reducing steady-state voltage spread. © 2008 Louie J. however. and the ability to add forced cooling may be an option to address future load growth. etc). and the flow of reactive power to loads. The real-power energy losses in an industrial electric power distribution system are generally negligible. The only accurate way to predict voltage spread in advance of commissioning of a system is by means of a steady-state power flow simulation that can correctly address the nonlinear relationship between load and voltage. Generator ratings are often expressed in terms of real power (kW or MW). the use of higher efficiency motors. For example. and in a fashion such that capacitors are switched on and off at the same time that their associated loads are switched on and off. ∆MVAR can be estimated to be six times the motor horsepower rating. a system can tolerate steady-state voltages between 95% and 103% of rated. Some loads have cyclic characteristics. The voltage dip associated with an impact load can be estimated from the formula: ∆MVAR Voltage change (%) ≈ × 100 MVAshort circuit In the specific case of motor starting. it is usually necessary to consult either the applicable industry standards. In those instances. The addition of power factor capacitors is another cost-effective way to address steadystate voltage spread. transformers) may have forced cooling capabilities that increase the inherent continuous thermal capacity beyond that of the basic component carcass. Powell. often opportunities to improve efficiency at the points of electric power consumption. The torque produced by a motor. Unfortunately. Capacitors intended mainly to remediate system voltage drop should be distributed across the system adjacent to loads. the motors that would normally be applied on a 480v. is approximately proportional to the square of applied per unit terminal voltage. In most cases.o o o o o o o o o o o current flow in the conducting elements making up those components. those design margins are generally not known to the power system engineer. There are. engine. it is typical for the ratings to be expressed in terms of the total power (kVA or MVA) equivalent.

and may require special provisions to ride through transient voltage dips. An undocumented but effective criterion is that the available short circuit stiffness should be about 25 times the magnitude of peak stead-state loading.2kV are utility distribution voltages and make sense for industrial distribution only if the industrial system is to be fed directly from the utility distribution system. Consideration must be given to the thermal energy released by faults and the resulting requirements for personnel protection. Consideration should be given to applying very large motors (typically 10. 12. PE Page 28 Rev 1 . In general. 4. Magnetically latched contactors drop out when the instantaneous voltage falls below about 75%. to reduce the fault clearing time.o o o o o o o o o o o o o o The addition of power factor capacitors will change the baseline for the voltage dip associate with starting motors or other impact loads. The maximum fault clearing time using time overcurrent protection should be kept to one second or less. In general. Powell.8kV is a poor choice of voltage for industrial distribution. That consideration may result in the desire to reduce the available short circuit level. © 2008 Louie J. While the designer of a system has the freedom to choose any voltage that makes sense. but in general will make the magnitude of dip greater than would be the case without capacitors. A common rule-of-thumb is that the voltage dip associated with an impact load should not force the instantaneous voltage below 80-85% of rated system voltage based on avoiding contactor dropout. a modular design involving a larger number of individually-smaller unit substations is superior to a design that relies on a smaller number of larger substations. the system design should not require more than three layers of timeovercurrent backup protection at any given voltage level In general. there are a few voltage choices that are not recommended: 2. Application of the “25:1” rule is helpful in deciding the optimum voltage of a mediumvoltage distribution bus in an industrial system.47kV and 13. The captive-transformer design minimizes motor starting voltage drop.4kV is obsolete as a distribution voltage although it may make sense as a machine voltage in a captive transformer application.000 HP are above) in captive-transformer arrangements. Microprocessor devices may have a higher undervoltage dropout level. the system design should result in a minimum 3:1 ratio between the pickup threshold of a backup overcurrent device and the pickup threshold of the largest feeder overcurrent device. The loads to be served will determine the short circuit levels that the system must have to support those loads. Reactive solutions to motor starting or other impact loads must be dynamic reactive sources that increase their reactive output as the impact forces a decrease in bus voltage. Adjustable-speed power converters can significantly reduce the voltage impact associated with starting a motor. and also transfers the application of the associated large motor to a higher voltage bus that is likely to have greater short circuit stiffness such that the impact is less significant. The National Electric Code mandates that the short circuit rating of fault interrupting devices be sufficient for the available short circuit currents that the system can produce. or both. Starting reactors and autotransformers may be useful in reducing the starting impact of larger motors. and the ability of these system to allow the speed of the motor to be adjusted to match the requirements of the load may also result in enhanced energy efficiency.

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