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The 19th International Symposium on High Voltage Engineering, Pilsen, Czech Republic, August, 23 – 28, 2015


1, 3* 1 2 1 1 3
Y. Y. Wang , C. Z. Tian , Y. B. Shao , J. H. Huang , S. Q. Wang and Y. M. Li
State Grid Henan Economic Research Institute, Zhengzhou, China
State Grid Henan Electric Power Research Institute, Zhengzhou, China
Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, China
*Email: <>

Abstract: As the rapid development of electrical industry, higher standards have been set
for the reliability of electrical equipment. Gas insulated substation (GIS) is widely used
nowadays because of its small volume and high operational reliability, and online
monitoring of partial discharge (PD) in GIS has become the focus of current research.
Pattern recognition of the PD signals acquired is proved to be effective to grasp the
different characteristics of typical defects in GIS. In this paper, three defect models are
tested by acoustic method including the metallic protrusion, the floating potential and
inner defect model, the PD data of which acquired after repeated experiments were
analysed. Four spectrograms were calculated and displayed including the pulse count
distribution n, the maximum pulse height distribution qmax, the mean pulse height
distribution qn and the discharge amplitude distribution (q). The graphic differences
of three defects are preliminarily summarized. 32 PD parameters were calculated as the
possible input of improved back propagation (BP) neutral network, including discharge
asymmetry, phase asymmetry, the cross-correlation factor, and the number of peaking,
the phase median, skewness and kurtosis. Combined with three parameter-selecting
schemes, which are respectively proposed based on the repeatability, the statistical
features of the PD data and the distance criterion, the results of pattern recognition were
compared. It is found that the scheme based on the class distance criterion is
comprehensively optimal.

radical basis function NN in [4]. Y Xiao et al

reported two defect models of GIS can be
recognized by adaptive resonance theory NN with
With the rapid development of electrical industry,
repetition rate and main frequency of the PD pulse
Gas insulated switchgear (GIS) has been widely
as input variables [5].
used in power system nowadays for its compact
structure and high reliability. However, severe In this paper, an improved back propagation (BP)
accidents can be caused by sudden breakdowns. NN is constructed to differentiate three defects in
Early detection and analysis of partial discharge GIS including the metallic protrusion, the floating
(PD) signals are proved effective to evaluate inner potential, and the inner air gap. Feature extraction
insulation condition. of two-dimension phase-resolved partial discharge
(PRPD) spectrum is discussed, and selection
Feature parameters extracted from PD spectrums
principles of input variable are compared.
usually consist of statistical feature, fractal feature,
wavelet feature, and moment feature. Statistical
feature is preferably adopted in pattern recognition 2 EXPERIMENTAL SETUP AND PRPD
of GIS for its easy application and rich information SPECTRUM
content. As for the analysis method, it ranges from
direct observation of graphic feature to genetic
algorithm (GA), neural net (NN), fuzzy logic (FL),
expert system (ES) and grey correlation analysis
[1-2]. Researches show that NN can be Schematic of the testing circuit is shown as Figure
successfully applied to the pattern recognition of 1, where T1 is a regulator, T2 is an isolation
defects in GIS, whereas, the method of feature transformer, T3 is a testing transformer, R is a
extraction and the type of NN affect the accuracy protective resistance approximately 300 kΩ, and
of recognition evidently. Cx represents the defect model. The isolation
transformer is adopted to minimize the harmonic
It is proposed by Hans-Gerd Kranz that NN and interference from the grid. PD signals are acquired
minimum distance classification can be applied in by the acoustic sensor and then real-time
the pattern recognition of PD signals acquired by transmitted to AIA compact tester.
acoustic method [3]. Differential box counting, multi
fractal dimension and graphic center of the PD Defect models investigated include the metallic
spectrum were extracted and then classified by protrusion, the floating potential, and the inner air
gap, with the structural diagrams shown in Figure 2. then n stands for the sum of discharge count in
The top and bottom of the three models are made all phase windows of m cycles. As for n and
of aluminium, the sidewall of the cylinder is made qmax, the following equations are established.
of plexiglass, the inner diameter is 100mm, the qmax ( )  max{q1 ( ), q2 ( ), qm ( )} (1)
height is 60mm, and the pressure tolerance is
1MPa. In the metallic protrusion model, the
equivalent radius of the curvature for the needle is  q ( )

approximately 90 m, and the distance between

qmean ( )  i 1
the needle and the ground electrode is adjustable. In equation (2), the sum of the discharge count is
In the floating potential model, the upper electrode divided by m rather than k to minimize the
is an aluminium cylinder with the diameter of influence of discharge randomness on qn. As
10mm and the length of 10mm, the diameter of the
for (q), the horizontal axis is the discharge
insulation ring is 30mm, the floating potential is
capacity, and the vertical axis is the discharge
also made of aluminium with the diameter of 10mm,
count of a certain discharge capacity. It contains
the length of 15mm, and the sharpened tip with the
the information of both amplitude and count of the
curvature radius of 4mm. In the inner air gap model,
PD pulse, and the processing method is similar as
three layers of epoxy are glued together with an
that of n.
inside air gap.
Typical PRPD spectrums of three defect models
are listed as in Figure 3. As for the metallic
protrusion model, the needle-to-plane distance is
set to 5mm, the applied voltage is 14.5kV, and the
filled gas pressure is 0.45MPa. As for floating
potential model, the distance between the floating
potential and the HV electrode is set to 0.09mm,
the applied voltage is 14.5kV, and the filled gas
Figure 1: Schematic of the testing circuit pressure is 0.1MPa. As for the inner gap model,
the diameter of the air gap is set to 2mm, the
applied voltage is 10kV, and the filled gas pressure
is 0.1MPa.

(a) Metallic protrusion (b) Floating potential

(c) Inner air gap (a) Metallic protrusion (b) Floating potential

Figure 2: Structural diagram of the defect model



Due to the randomness of PD, various distribution

spectrums containing information of multiple cycles
are usually adopted for signal analysis. The
following four types of spectrums are calculated
and displayed, including the phase distribution of
(c) Inner air gap
pulse count n, the phase distribution of pulse
peak qmax, the phase distribution of mean Figure 3: PRPD spectrums of three defect models
discharge capacity qn, and the amplitude
distribution of discharge count (q). As for the As shown in Figure 3, graphic features of PRPD
spectrums of phase distribution, every cycle of spectrum of the three defects differ a lot. As for the
power frequency (50Hz) is divided into several metallic protrusion, the discharge amplitude in the
phase windows. If the cycle count measured is m, positive half of the voltage cycle stabilizes at 2mV,
each cycle is divided into n phase windows, and however, camel-back curve of the amplitude is
the discharge count in each phase window is k, observed in the negative half. The discharge count
distribute evenly in the whole cycle, except for the
phase interval between 200° and 250°. As for the Qs N 
floating potential model, phase intervals of PD Q (7)
include 0~50°, 150~250°, and 330~360°, and the Qs N 
amplitude range of PD distribute at 20~40mV, Qs  and Qs  refer to the sum of discharge capacity
20~60mV, and 20~40mV respectively. As for the in positive and negative half cycle respectively.
inner air gap model, two symmetrical camel-back
curves of the PD pulses are observed in the phase N  and N  stand for the corresponding discharge
intervals of 0~100° and 150~250°. Despite of the count. Q reflects the asymmetry of PD in the
obvious difference in graphic features of three positive and negative half cycle.
defects, it is difficult to tell them apart by sole direct   inc

/ inc

observation. Therefore, it is essential for the
feature extraction of two-dimensional spectrums
in c  and in c  refer to the inception phase of
and construction of BP network. discharge in the positive and negative half cycle
 xi  yi   xi  yi / n (9)
SELECTION OF PD SPECTRUMS [ xi2  ( xi ) 2 / n][ yi2  ( yi ) 2 / n]
xi and yi stand for the discharge capacity of the
3.1 PARAMETER EXTRACTION phase window numbered i in the positive and
negative half cycle respectively, and n refers to the
Statistical operator is the characteristic description phase window count. cc reflects the shape
of the distribution function extracted from a large asymmetry of the positive and negative half cycle.
amount of raw data. The statistical operator of PD Q, and cc all describe the distribution difference
contains skewness (Sk), kurtosis (Ku), local peak between the positive and negative half cycle in the
count (Pe), cross-correlation factor (cc), discharge PD spectrum, and all range from 0 to 1, where 0
asymmetry (Q), phase median (), phase stands for the asymmetry of discharge capacity,
asymmetry (). Based on the selection method inception phase of discharge and shape between
adopted by Haefely TE571 PD tester with minor the positive and negative half cycle, and stands for
adjustment, 32 statistical operators are extracted symmetry.
from four two-dimensional spectrums as follows.
n: S k  , K u  , Pe  , cc , Q ,   ,  3.2 PARAMETER SELECTION
qmax: S k  
, K u , Pe 
, cc ,  
Selection of 32 parameters is essential for the
qn: S k  
, K u , Pe 
, cc ,   algorithm simplification, boost of calculation speed,
and the increase of recognition accuracy. Three
(q) : S k , K u , Pe
schemes of parameter selections are proposed,
Sk, Ku, Pe and for both positive and negative and the whole 32-parameter scheme is calculated
cycles of n, qmax and qn need to be for comparison. PD data to be analysed are from
calculated. The calculation formulas for the 60 experiments (20 per defect type) with various
statistical operators are listed as equation (3) to (9). experimental conditions.
   xi  Pi (3)
3.2.1 Data repeatability
xi stands for discrete value of the phase window
numbered i, and Pi stands for the probability of xi. Poor reproducibility of some parameters is found
 x     Pi after repeated experiments. The first scheme is

Sk  i
(4) proposed based on the exclusion of these
 3
parameters. Take the metallic protrusion defect
is the standard deviation of xi. The spectrum is with the same experimental conditions as in 2.2 for
of full symmetry when Sk equals zero, leans to the example, the repeatability of 32 operators in four
right side when Sk is below zero, leans to the left spectrums after three experiments are shown in
side when Sk is above zero. Figure 4. It can be seen that operators with poor
 x     Pi repeatability in the metallic protrusion defect are

Ku  i
3 (5) Ku in n, Sk and cc in qmax. As for the
- +
 4
floating potential, operators with poor repeatability
The spectrum fits the normal distribution exactly are Ku , cc in nSk and Ku in q. And when it
when Ku equals zero, is flatter than the normal comes to the inner air gap, the operators with poor
distribution when Ku is below zero, is steeper than repeatability are Ku , Ku in qmax, Ku , Ku , cc in
+ - + -
the normal distribution when Ku is above zero.
qn, and Pe, Sk in q. Based on the above, 13
Pe   Peak ( xi ) (6) statistical operators with poor repeatability are
proposed including Ku , cc in n, Sk , Ku , cc in
+- + +-
When dyi 1 / dxi 1  0 and dyi 1 / dxi 1  0 both are
qmax, Ku , cc in qn, Pe, Sk, Ku in q.
satisfied, xi is treated as a local peak and Peak (xi)
equals 1.
n is the total sample count of one defect, which is
20 in this paper. xi stands for an operator of one
sample in one defect. x refers to the average value
0.4 n-Pe+
of xi. Distribution of the mean value and absolute
0.2 value of RSD of 32 operators are presented in

-0.2 Figure 5 and 6, where the operators from left to
right are , Q, cc, , , Pe , Pe , Sk , Sk , Ku , Ku in
-0.4 + - + - + -

n, cc, , , Pe , Pe , Sk , Sk , Ku , Ku in

+ - + - + -

qmaxcc, , , Pe , Pe , Sk , Sk , Ku , Ku in

-1.0 + - + - + -

1 2 3 qnPe, Sk, Ku in q It should be noted that all

the phase medians are divided by 180 for
(a) n normalization.
0.8 Qmax-sk-
0.6 Qmax-Ku-
0.2 Qmax-u-
0.0 Qmax-Pe-






1 2 3
experiment Figure 5: Average value of 32 operators
(b) qmax
0.7 Qmean-sk+
0.6 Qmean-sk-
0.5 Qmean-Ku+
0.4 Qmean-ku-
0.0 Qmean-u-

-0.1 Qmean-Pe+
-0.2 Qmean-Pe-

1 2 3
Figure 6: Absolute RSD of 32 operators

(c) qn
If the difference of the average value of a certain
2.0 Q
operator among three defects is above 0.05, the
operator is considered as separable for the
1.4 q-sk
recognition. The following four groups are selected
from 32 operators.

0.4 1) Absolute RSD of all three defects are below 0.2,
and the average is separable. , in qmaxSk
0.2 -

in qnSk in qAbsolute RSD of two


defects are below 0.2 with separable average.in


1 2
n, in qnAbsolute RSD of all three
(d) q defects are above 0.5 with separable average.  in
n, Ku , Ku in qmaxAbsolute RSD of two
+ -
Figure 4: Repeatability of statistical operators in defects are above 0.8 with separable average. Ku ,
metallic protrusion
Ku in nKu , Ku in qn
- + -

Therefore, the left 19 operators are selected in the When the average value of an operator in three
first scheme. defects is separable, the smaller the absolute RSD
value, it is easier for the BP network to tell different
3.2.2 Statistical characteristics defects apart. However, as for operators with large
absolute RSD value, more information is obtained
In the second scheme, 32 operators are grouped in the learning process of the network. Therefore,
by the absolute value of relative standard deviation, the second scheme contains the operators listed in
with the calculation formula in equation (10). the four groups mentioned above. Meanwhile, sub

 (x  x ) 2 scheme with only the operators with large or small

i 1
absolute RSD are proposed for comparison.
RSD  (10)
3.2.3 Class distance criterion
The third scheme is proposed based on the
dispersion degree of the sample in feature space.
If the pattern vectors of the three defects locate at
different areas of the feature space, these defects
are considered as separable. According to the
distance separability criterion, with the increase of
class distance and decrease of divergence within
class, the discrimination gets easier.
In an M-dimensional feature space defined by a
candidate feature set X = [x1, x2, ..., xM], if d(Xim,
Xjm) represents the distance between the sample
numbered m in the defect type numbered i and the
sample numbered m in the defect type numbered j,
the calculation formula is as equation (11). Figure 7: Distance among class of 32 operators

d ( X im , X jm )   (x
k 1
ik , m  x jk ,m ) 2 (11)

where: i, j range from 1 to N, m ranges from 1 to M.

N is the number of defects which is 3 in this paper,
M is the total count of candidate feature which is
32, D is the count of training sample which is 20.
As for the class distance as in equation (12),
1 N N
1 D
Jm   
2 i 1
P (i )
j 1
P ( j )   d ( X ik ,m , X jk ,m ) (12)
D k 1
Figure 8: Distance within class of 32 operators
where: P(i), P(j) stand for the prior probability of the
corresponding defect, which is 1/3. Distance and from the input layer to invisible layer.  is the
among class and within class of 32 parameters are learning rate ranges from 0 to 1, dk stands for the
shown as Figure 7 and 8, where the operators from expectative output, ok stands for the actual output,
left to right are Sk , Sk , Ku , Ku ,cc in qmaxSk ,
+ - + - +
xi refers to the input, yj refers to output of the
hidden layer, and k refers to error signal of the
Sk , Ku , Ku ,cc in qnQ, Sk , Sk , Ku , Ku , , cc
- + - + - + -

in n, ,  in qmax,  in qn,  output layer.

in nPe in qPe , Pe in qmaxPe , Pe in
+ - + -
Three measures are taken to improve traditional
nPe , Pe in qnSk, Ku in qIt is found
+ -
BP network, including the addition of momentum,
that Ku , Ku in qmaxqnn and Ku in q
+ -
adjustable training rate, and the introduction of
are of large class distance. However, the distance steepness factor, listed as equation (16) to (18).
within class of these operators for inner defect is
also large, which violates the distance separability ∆W(t) = X + ∆W(t-1) (16)
criterion. 10 operators are selected after overall is the coefficient of the momentum, and ranges
consideration including Q,  in n, Sk , Sk , cc
+ -
 
from 0 to 1. The addition reflects the experience of
in qmaxSk , Sk ,  ,  in qn
+ -
former adjustments, and increase the calculation
speed when the error surface fluctuates violently.
4 RESULTS AND DISCUSSION 1.05 (t) E(t+1)<E(t)
 (t+1) = 0.7 (t) E(t+1)>1.05E(t) (17)
NETWORK Proper adjustable learning rate could help boost
the convergence rate of the network, and the initial
Unipolar sigmoid function, as in equation (13), is  of nerure in the hidden layer should be larger
selected as the activation function of BP network. than that in the output layer.
1 1
f ( x)  (13) ok  (18)
1  e x 1  e netk / 
Calculation formulas of weight adjustment in three- Steepness factorIs introduced in the original
layer BP network are listed in equation (14), (15). transforming function to increase the convengence
 jk   (d k  ok )ok (1  ok ) y j (14) rate. Besides, raw data are pre processed into the
l range from 0 to 1 in order to be comparable to the
vij   (  ko jk ) y j (1  y j ) xi (15) output range of unipolar sigmoid function, as in
k 1 equation (19), where xi is the raw data, and xi is
where: Δ jk, Δij stand for the adjustment of the
the processed data.
weight vector from the output layer to the neure,
xi  x min (19) training sample in further study. Sub scheme 3) is
xi 
x max  x min a combination of 1) and 2), with high recognition
Table 2: Results comparison of pattern recognition
Data of 90 experiments obtained from AIA are Defect Correct/Total Average iteration
analysed (30 per defect), 20 samples out of 30 are type 1 2 3 1 2 3
randomly selected as the teaching sample, and the Metallic
9/10 5/10 8/10
left 10 are treated as the test sample. The output protrusion
Floating 1899 5730 4308
parameters are defined as O1, O2, and (O1, O2) = potential
10/10 5/10 8/10
(0.01, 0.01), (0.5, 0.5), (1.0, 1.0) represents the Inner air gap 7/10 8/10 10/10
metallic protrusion, floating potential, and the inner
air gap defect respectively. The governing error of 4.2.3 Distance among and within class
iteration E is defined as equation (20).
Comparison between the third scheme and the
1 n
E   Ep (20) whole-parameter scheme is presented in Table 3.
n i 1 It is shown that the third scheme is of the best
where: n is the total count of teaching sample. The recognition accuracy, with a satisfying speed of
network training stops when E<0.01 or N>15000, iteration. Compared with the schemes mentioned
the initial and  both are 0.05, the initial weight above, the scheme proposed by class distance is
matrix are randomly generated. The parameters comprehensive optimal.
are adjusted to get the optimal group, and the
Table 3: Results comparison of pattern recognition
group of test parameters stay the same in one
learning and recognition process. Defect type
Correct/Total Average iteration
10-input 32-input 10-input 32-input
4.2.1 Data repeatability Metallic protrusion 10/10 5/10
Floating potential 9/10 4/10 1134 1962
Comparison between the 19-input and the 32-input Inner air gap 8/10 7/10
schemes are presented as in Table 1. It is shown
that compared to the whole-parameter scheme, the 5 CONCLUSION
first scheme is of relatively high learning efficiency,
few iterations, and high recognition accuracy. It is 1) Difference of graphic feature is observed in the
also found that the 32-input scheme could stuck in PRPD spectrum of the metallic protrusion, the
the local minima easily, and the initial optimal floating potential, and the inner air gap defect. Four
parameters are difficult to obtain. It is observed the spectrums are calculated including n, qmax,
cause of recognition failure in the 32-input scheme qn, and H(q).
is that deviation of certain sample stays large when 2) Three measures are taken to construct the
E is below 0.01.
improved BP network including the addition of
Table 1: Results comparison of pattern recognition momentum, adjustable training rate, and the
introduction of steepness factor.
Correct/Total Average iteration
Defect type
19-input 32-input 19-input 32-input
3) 32 statistical operators including Sk, Ku, Pe, cc,
Metallic protrusion 7/10 5/10
Floating potential 7/10 4/10 1853 1962
Q, ,  are extracted from the four spectrums.
Inner air gap 9/10 7/10 Three schemes of parameter selection based on
the repeatability, the statistical characteristics and
4.2.2 Statistical characteristics the class distance are proposed and compared.
Three sub schemes are proposed including 1) 7 Results show that the scheme based on the class
operators with small absolute RSD and separable distance criterion is comprehensively optimal.
average, 2) 7 operators with large absolute RSD
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