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Automatic Decision Making of Timing of Insulator Washing in Coastal

Substations by Pollution Prediction Through Event Matching Model

Satoru GOTOt, Masatoshi NAKAMURAt , Takeo WATANABEt and Takaslii TANIGUCHIS
tDepartment of Electrical Engineering, Saga University, Honjomachi, Saga 840, Japan
SKyushu Electric Power Co., Inc., 1-82, Wat.anabe-Dori, 2-Chome, Chuo-Ku, Fukiioka 810-91, Japan

Abstract tigated the serious damages of the insulator pollu-

Insulators in coastal substations are attacked by tion at the Second Muroto Typhoon in September,
salty wind from seashore and it causes flash-over 1961. It takes only two or three hours to excess
and power failures. Hence, the polluted insulators the pollution deposit from hazardous level when
are washed using much pure water before a flush- the typhoons attack the substations. The rapid
over. In this paper, a method of automatic decision pollution of the insulators is very dangerous, spe-
making of timing for the insulator washing was pro- cially for coastal substations.
posed. The prediction of the amount of pollution
The insulators are washed with much amount of
deposit was used for the aut,omatic decision mak-
pure water before the pollution deposits increase
ing and an event matching model (EMM) was also
to a critical level. In actual field, the polluted in-
proposed for the prediction. The proposed auto-
sulators are washed rat,her frequently to avoid the
matic decision making by EMM was evaluated by
time lost of insulator washing in live conditions
the actual data of a coastal substation in Japan
based on decision making of washing time deter-
and showed satisfactory results.
mined by human experts. The frequent insulator
1. Introduction washing is costly and was caused by the unreliable
Insulators in coastal substations are frequently prediction of the insulator pollution by heuristic
manner. The insulator washing requires much man
subjected to pollution by the wind with much con-
power and pure water, for example 50 [t] pure wa-
tent of salt. Insulator pollution is a big problem
which causes flash-over of the insulators and results ter per washing, then, the suitable decision making
long power failures. Damages caused by rapid in- of insulator washing is required.
sulator pollution especially at typhoons were inves- 2.2 Mechanism of Insillator Pollution
tigated [l,21. To avoid these accidents caused by
the insulator pollution, the insulators are washed The relationship between weather condition and
using pure wat,er before a flush-over occurs, pollut,ion process is very important to know the
best timing of the insulator washing. The mecha-
We have already proposed the automatic decision nism of the insulator pollut~ionis explained as fol-
making of insulator wasliing[3, 4,51 which auto- lows (see Fig. 1);
mated the present decision making. However, the
present decision making is not satisfied with re- i) Waves and/or wind on sea spout salt particles.
gard to the rationality and a inore suitable deci- ii) The salt particles are brought to land by wind
sion making is required. In this study, a method from seashore.
of automatic decision making of washing the pol- iii) The brought salt particles attach to the surface
luted insulators in substations is developed by in- of the insulators in coastal substations.
troducing n new prediction inethod using an event
matching model (EMM). The factors for the pollution deposits are summa-
rized as follows:
2. Insulator Pollution in Coastal
Substations 0 Wind velocity effects on the concentration of
2.1 Problem of Insulator Pollution the salt particles in air and amount of collision
of salt particles to the insulators.
Strong wind from seashore such as typhoon causes 0 Wind direction effects on the concentration of
rapid pollution of insulators. Reference [l] inves- the salt particles in air brought by wind.

1996 IEEE Annual Report - Conference on Electrical insulation and Dielectric Phenomena, San Francisco, October 20-23,1996
e Wave height effects on the concentration of the 3.2 Pollution Prediction Using EMM
salt particles in air.
e Humidity effects on the percentage of sticking The main factor of the pollution increase is wind
and much moisture causes the high percentage. and t,he main factor of the pollution decrease is
e Rainfall washes the surface of the insulators and rain, hence, we consider the effect of the wind and
causes the decrease of insulator pollution. rain to the insulator pollution, separately. For tlie
comparison of weather in the EMM, the effect of
Although there are many factors for the insulator the wind and the effect of rain are searched by
pollution, in this paper, we mainly concentrated the past data, independently. Four hours data are
the two main factors, i.e., wind and rainfall, be- used for the comparison of weather conditions. The
cause these two factors have main effect to the in- index for the comparison of wind is defined as
sulator pollution and they are easy to collect from 3
a weather bureau near the substation. &(IC) = ( w v ( i ) u 3 ( k- i ) ) (1)
3. Automatic Decision Making of Washing where v(k - i) is the wind velocity from seashore at
Timing Using EMM time k - i and ur, ( i ) is the weights of time progres-
3.1 Basic Idea of EMM sion. Here, the third power of the wind is used for
the index (1) because the index is introduced for
The Event Makching Model (EMM) waq developed the evaluation of the pollut#ionincrease by wind ve-
for the precise prediction of pollution deposit,s es- locit8yand the pollution increase is approximately
pecially for the rapid pollution. The experts in in proportional to the third power of the wind ve-
the substation predict the pollution deposits us- locity which is called as “the third power rule”[ 13.
ing the present and past weather conditions. They
memorized the weather conditions of rapid pol- The index for the comparison of rainfall is defined
lution and decided the insulator washing if the as
present weather condition was closed to the crit-
ical weather conditions. Ir(k) (ZtJr(i)r(k- i)) (2)
The EMM searches the past weather condition where r ( k - i ) is the rainfall at time L - i and 7 4 ( i )
which is closest to the present weather condition is the weights of time progression. The weights in
from the point of view of the pollution deposit as (1) and (2) are exponentially decayed with time as
shown in Fig. 2, and then predicts the pollut,ion = U$.(i) = (1/2)i.
deposits from the past pollution deposit, dat,a cor-
responding t o the matched weather condition. The The time t: of the nearest wind condition is ex-
tracted according to the equation
EMM can be applied for any high nonlinear phe-
nomena such as rapid insulator .pollutions whose t: = argmin IIU,(t)- I,(k)l (3)
causality holds since it uses the actual existings and the time t: of the nearest rainfall condition is
for the prediction. extracted according to the equation
t: = argmin
k IIr(t) Ir(L)l. - (4)
1 .
1 1 1 1

Wind- .......
1 . 1 1 . 1 1

Salt particles
. . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . . Humidity

. . :.....;
i Comparison !.i:
........................................................................ :

Fig. 1. Mechanism of insulator pollution Fig. 2. Comparison of weather information

The amount of pollution increase by wind ve- Table 1 Root mean of the prediction error
locity is extracted by the pollution increase rate (Karatsu substation, April, September and Octo-
per one hour AptU(t:,)at time t:. The amount ber, 1904).
of pollution decrease by rainfall depends on the
present pollution deposit p ( t ) . Hence, the pollu- EMM Simple
tion decrease ratio at time t: is introduced and
the amount of pollution decrease is calculated by
-Apr(t:) = (1 - R(dT))p(l). Here, the calculation
of the pollution decrease ratio R ( t f ) , the effect of [rng/cm2] collected at variable sampling intervals,
wind velocity is subtracted using the conventional depending on the criticality of weather condition.
modeling by “the third power rule.” The pollution deposits are usually measured every
2 hours in day and every 3 hours in night, and at
Finally, the one hour ahead prediction of the pol- the critical weather condition such as typhoon, the
lution deposit are calculated by pollution deposits are measured every one hour.
+ +
F(i 1) ~ ( t )A p w ( t ; ) +
A ~ v ( t : ) . (5)
The data collected during April, September and
The prediction is used for the decision making of
October in 1994 were used for the evaluation of
the timing of the insulator washing.
the EMM. The prediction of pollution deposit at
3.3 Algorithm of Automatic Decision each measuring time was used for the evaluation.
Making by EMM The EMM was compared with the simple model
whose prediction of the pollution deposit was the
The insulator washing must be decided when the same as the present pollution deposits. Table 1
pollution deposit of the insulators becomes haz- shows the root mean squares of the both prediction
ardous level, and unnecessary washing must be error. The error of the EhlM is less than half of
avoided. The automat,ic decision making is based that of the simple method and the results shows
on the predicttion of pollution deposit and the ac- the effectiveness of the EMM.
curacy of the prediction. The one hour ahead pre-
diction of the pollution deposit (5) is used and the 4.2 Evaluation of Automatic Decision
insulator washing is decided when the prediction Making
$(t + 1) exceeds the threshold value A, i.e.,
The proposed automatic decision making is evalu-
Wash if 8(t+ 1) 2 X
{ No wash if p(t 1) < A.+ (6) a k d by the actual data. The pilot insulator which
is used for the measurement of pollution deposit is
The threshold value X in (6) is selected such that washed as same as the actual insulators in the sub-
the percentage of the mis-decision making, i.e., the station. It is impossible to evaluate the proposed
flush-over of insulators, is very small. Hence, the decision making by the original data of the pollu-
standard deviation of the prediction error U is used tion deposits because the present decision making
for the selection of the threshold X as is done when the pollut,ion deposit goes over 0.007
X = pmaz - 4.265~ (7) [mg/cm2]. Hence, to evaluate the proposed deci-
where pmamis the maximum allowable pollution sion making method, the virtual data of the pollu-
deposit for the hot-line washing. By using (7), t,he tion deposits p , ( k ) were constructed as following
percentage of the mis-decision making is equal or procedure.
less than 0.001[%].
i) The amount of the pollution decrease by actual
4. Evaluation of Automatic Decision washing is regarded as zero. Then, the one step
Making by EMM Using Actual Data ahead pollution deposit of the actual washing
keeps the present pollution deposit. The mod-
4.1 Validation of EMM
ification, however, neglects the change of the
We applied the proposed automatic decision mak- pollution deposit from the washing time to the
ing to the actual data collected at Karatsu substa- next measurement time.
tion in Japan. The available data are wind veloc- ii) When the automatic decision making decides to
ity [m/s] , wind direction (16 directions) and rain- wash the insulators, i.e., the prediction exceeds
fall [mm/h] in hourly basis, and pollution deposits the threshold value A, the one step ahead pol-

the virtual data constructed by the actual data of
the Karatsu substation and proved remarkable re-
duction of number of washings compared to actual
washings. The proposed method has proved iits
effectiveness in reduction of the total cost of the
insulator washing.
The authors are grateful to engineers in Saga
branch of Kyushu Electric Power Company for
1 s 10 1s 20 2s 30 their valuable comments and data acquisition and
Time[day] Mr. M. Yamamoto, a master course student of De-
partment of Electrical Engineering in Saga Uni-
Fig. 3. Prediction of the insulator pollution and versity, for his programming and calculation of the
results of automatic decision making (Karatsu sub- results.
station, April, 1994) R,eferences
[l] Electric Joint Research, vol. 20, no. 2 (1964)
(in Japanese).
[2] Electric Joint Research, vol. 35, no. 3 (1970)
Table 2 Washing times of automatic decision mak-
(in Japanese).
ing and actual decision making by using the vir-
[3] S. Goto, M. Nakaiiiiira, N. Nanayakkara,
tual data (Karatsu substation, April, September
T . Matsunaga and T. Taniguchi: Automatic
and October, 1994) Decision Making of Washing the Rapid Pol-
luted Insulators in Substations, Proceedings
of the 26th ISCIE International Symposinrn
on Stochastic Systems Theory and Its Appli-
cations, pp. 167-171 (1995)
lution deposit is set as the mean of the actual [4] S. Goto, M. Nakamura, N. Nanayakkara and
washed pollution deposits (0.0034[mg/cm2]). T . Taniguchi. Automatization of Human De-
cision Making for ~VashingTime of Pollntrd
The result of the automatsic decision making are Insulators in Substations. Proceedings of the
shown in Fig. 3. In Fig. 3, the actual decision mak- 34th SICE Annual Conference (1995)
ing results are also included. As shown in Fig. 3, [5] S. Goto, M. Nakamura, N Nanayakkara and
the proposed automatic decision making decided T. Taniguchi: Reliable Automatic Declsicm
the washing when the virtual pollution deposits are Making for Washing the Polluted Insulators
closed to the maximum allowable’pollution deposit in Coastal Substations, 1995 Conference on
for hot-line washing p,,, = 0.03 [mg/cm2]. Electrical Insulation and Dielectric Phenoni-
ena, pp. 408-411 (1905)
Table 2 shows the times of insulator washing for
all data. By using the proposed automatic deci-
sion making, the number of washing can be re-
duced and and the virtual pollut,ion deposit never
exceed the maximum allowable pollution deposit
pnaz = 0.03 [mg/cin2]. It indicates that, the pro-
posed automatic decision making required the in-
dispensable washing.

5. Conclusion
A method of automatic decision making for timing
of the insulator washing near coastal substations
was developed. The automatization was based
on the prediction of the pollution deposits by the
EMM. The proposed method was evaluated by