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Distribution Automation

Dr. M. K. Khedkar

Prof. & Head

Electrical Engineering

VNIT, Nagpur

• The annual load growth is high (around 10% to 12 %)

necessitating setting up of additional system facilities every year
to meet the growing demand.
• The power losses in distribution network are high around 15%
of total energy generated and reduction of loss is profitable.
• The distribution equipment is fully loaded or overloaded
causing high equipment failure rate.
• The power factor of system is poor, requiring efficient reactive
power management.
• The agricultural pump sets contribute for 80% of peak demand in
rural area and 40 % of total energy sales and therefore load control
of agricultural pump sets is very attractive.

• Voltage profile of system is unsatisfactory.

• The number of breakdowns and momentary interruptions on

distribution feeder are high.
Typical Power System Generating Plant


Circuit breakers

Generation System Transmission System

Transmission System Transformers in Dispersed

Bulk power Storage and
substations generation

Distribution System Sub-transmission

Solar or
system Sources
(100KW to
• substations
Distribution phase 1MW)
• transformers feeders Regulator

• circuit breakers Battery or
switch Capacitor
• feeders Fuel cells,
1 to 25 MW Primary
• sectionalizing switches One-phase
• capacitor banks lateral feeder

• voltage regulators Distribution

• DSGs Transformer

• customers
- HT customers Photovoltaic
DSG Home
- LT customers Power supply,
up to 100 KW
Need For Distribution Automation

The evolutionary growth in microprocessor based devices and

telecommunication equipment and network have brought the
possibility of integrating protection, control, metering, automation
and monitoring system cost effectively. This will considerably
improve system reliability, quality of supply, and customer service
and defer capital investment on system expansion. Distribution
automation and system monitoring meet the demands and
requirements in improving service reliability at a lower cost.
Need For Distribution Automation

The real need for advanced distribution automation is associated with

the growing demand for the reliability of power supply and desire for
optimized network conditions in normal and emergency operations.
One of the most important aspects of distribution automation system is
featured by the electric utility dispatchers’ ability to remotely monitor,
coordinate and operate distribution components.
D.A. is an integrated concept for automation and digital control
functions of substations, lines and users. It includes control,
monitoring and safety of the system and load management. The
concept is based on use of technological advancements in computer
sciences and electronics in power delivery system
Automation provides automatic reclosing of relays, feeder
switching, remote monitoring of transformers, capacitors, circuit
breakers, sectionalizers, protections, at all levels. By virtue of real
time on-line monitoring and scheduling D.A. allows the system
operation with lesser capacity margins and reserves.
Objectives Of Distribution automation

The following are objectives for the DAS:

i. Reduce peak load and power losses to overcome prevailing
power shortages and defer construction of distribution facilities.

ii. Improve the reliability of supply by reducing the number and

duration of outages, and improve the quality of service.

iii. Improve the financial performance of the utility by improved

cash flow, safeguarding revenues, and preventing theft of
Function of Distribution Automation System

Remotely monitors the distribution system,

facilitates supervisory control of devices and
provides decision support tools to improve the
system performance
(Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition)

• Application Functions
Levels of Automation

Substation Level Automation

Feeder Level Automation

Customer Level Automation

Operational problems and Potential Applications of DAS

• Fault location, isolation and Service Restoration

• Maintaining good voltage profile
• Load Balancing
• Load Control
• Metering
• Maintaining Maps
• Fuse-off call operations
• Energy accounting
Candidate Distribution Automation Functions

Substation Feeder Automation Customer Interface

Automation Functions Automation
Functions Functions
 Data Acquisition From:  Data Acquisition From:  Automatic Meter Reading
- Circuit Breakers - Line Reclosers  Remote Reprogramming
- Load Tap Changers - Voltage Regulators of Time-of-Use (TOU)
- Capacitor Banks - Capacitor Banks Meters
- Transformers - Sectionalizers  Remote Service
 Supervisory Control of: - Line Switches Connect/Disconnect
- Circuit Breakers - Fault Indicators  Automated Customer
- Load Tap Changers  Supervisory Control of: Claims Analysis
- Capacitor banks - Line Reclosers
 Fault Location - Voltage Regulators
 Fault Isolation - Capacitor Banks
 Service Restoration - Sectionalizers
 Substation Reactive - Line Switches
Power Control  Fault Location
 Fault Isolation
 Service Restoration
 Feeder Reconfiguration
 Feeder Reactive Power
Control Center Architecture
RTUs in
the field

SCADA Host Systems App Server




DMP -1
DMP -2
DT 1 & 2
Application Functions

• Network Reconfiguration
a) Fault localization
b) Service Restoration
c) Load Balancing
• Integrated Volt-Var Control
• Remote Metering
• Automatic Load Shedding
• Load Management
• Automated Mapping and Facilities Management (AM/FM)
• Trouble Call Management System (TCMS)
• Load Survey and Energy Accounting
Network Reconfiguration - Fault Localization

• Locates faulty section in a radial distribution feeder by

operating “Load Break Switches” on a feeder

• Localization is faster compared to manual determination of

faulty section


A radial feeder
Fault localization Fault

CB Close

LB Sw Close
Network Reconfiguration - Service Restoration

• Restores service to non-faulty feeder sections by reconfiguration

• Considerations

* Presence of alternate paths

* Operation of LB switches
* Need to have remotely controllable switches
* Restoration based on
- satisfaction of current and voltage constraints
- minimum switches
- minimum losses
Network Reconfiguration - Load Balancing

• Composition and hence consumption patterns of loads on

different feeders are different

• To distribute loads among transformers/feeders

• Remote control of switches for reconfiguration

Load Balancing - Illustration

Feeder 1

Feeder 2

Integrated Volt-Var Control

• Applied on feeders with capacitors and voltage regulators

• Control of capacitor banks and voltage regulators

• Schedule for switching and tap control

• To meet reactive power requirements and reduce losses

Remote Metering

• Uses of electro-static meters

• Customer meter reading

• Facilitates Multiple tariff

• Detection of Meter tampering

• More justifiable at HT (high value) Customers

Automatic Load Shedding

• Under Frequency based load shedding

• Sensing Frequency through transducers

• Load shedding based on the frequency drop, current loading

conditions and priority of the load

• Closed loop function at RTU level

Load Management - Scheduled power cuts


• Gap between generation and demand Schedules for Power

cut on Feeders
• Schedule power cuts on rotation
(6 to 7)

• Automatic load shedding based on schedules (7 to 8)

(8 to 9)
• Facility to change the schedules
(9 to 10)
Load Management - Emergency based load shedding

• Gap between power generation and load demand due to

sudden contingencies

• To shed the loads based on the relief required

• Identification of loads to be shed based on

- current load magnitudes
- priority of the load
- time when last shed

• Shed the load based on the above factors

Load Management - Agricultural load control

• Importance of Agricultural load

• Separate schedule for Agricultural loads

• Ag. Loads categorized into groups

• Schedule for each group

• Shed the load based on the schedule

• Use of one-way radio switch

- Accepts a command to shed
- Restores automatically
Automated Mapping and Facilities Management (AM/FM)

• Display of geographical Maps

• Dynamic info on Maps

(From T&D World, Oct 2001)

• Layering, Zooming, Scrolling and Panning

• Historical data on Devices

(From T&D World, Oct 2001)

Trouble Call Management System (TCMS)

• Responds to customer complaints

• Acceptance of interruption/restoration data from the operator

• Distribution Transformer trip/close info from SCADA

• Determination of source of interruption

• Improvement of response time to customer complaints

Load Survey and Energy Accounting

• Availability of continuous data on loads etc.,

• Determination of Load Patterns

• Data for planning

• Detection of abnormal energy consumption pattern

• Identification of high loss areas

Overall Schematic Diagram of Gachibowli DA Project
Why Distribution Automation ?


- Tangible
- In-tangible
Tangible Benefits

Substation Feeder Customer interface

Automation Automation Automation
Reduction in Capital Expenditure Reduction in O&M Costs of:
Reduction in Capital Expenditure
due to: • Regular Meter Reading
due to:
• Deferment of additional substation • Reprogramming of Meters
• Deferment of additional feeders
facilities • Service Connect/Disconnect
• Effective utilization of existing
• Effective utilization of substation • Processing of Customer Claims
Reduction in O&M Costs of Breaker
Reduction in O&M Costs of: Increased Revenue Due to:
switching for:
• Fault Location and Isolation • Reduction of System Peak Load
• Routine Operations
• Service Restoration • Tamper Detection to Reduce
• Non-Routine Operations
• Routine Switching Operations Electricity Theft
Reduction in O&M Costs of LTC • Recloser Setting • Reduced Payments for Customer
Operation for: • Recloser Testing Claims
• Routine LTC Operations • Data Collection
• Non-Routine Operations • Data Analysis
• Feeder Reconfiguration
Reduction in O&M Costs for: • Capacitor Banks Inspection
• Routine Relay Testing
• Relay Setting
Increased Revenue Due to:
Reduction in O&M Costs of: • Loss Reduction due to Feeder
• Routine Data Collection Reconfiguration
• Non-Routine Data Collection • Loss Reduction due to Capacitor
• Data Analysis Banks Automation
• Testing of Data Logging Devices • Faster Service Restoration
• Repair of Data Logging Devices
Intangible Benefits

Benefit Substation Feeder Customer interface

Category Automation Automation Automation

Improved Service
Applicable Applicable Not Applicable
Improved Customer Applicable Applicable Applicable
Improved Public Applicable Applicable Not Applicable
Better Information Applicable Applicable Applicable
for Engineering and
Strategic or Applicable Applicable Applicable

Improved Public Not Applicable Not Applicable Applicable

A. Recent Trends in Distribution Engineering

1. Advancements In Power Delivery

2. Revolution In Utility Industry.
4.Data Flow
5.Equipment Monitoring
6.Condition Monitoring
7.Maintenance Intervals
8.Enhanced Monitoring
1. Advancements In Power Delivery

•Back in old days, field communications being paper based,

it would take customer a while to notify a fault.And still longer
for the utility to locate and repair the fault.

•Two way radios, portable telephones, commercial links,

pagers, cell phones expensive modem and software
gradually pressed into service. And now companies: are
providing low cost,real time,high power devices for unlimited
data flow in voice,soft or hard forms at affordable rates.
2. Revolution In Utility Industry.

• Within a short span, IT has invoked dramatic trends in the

power utility services.

• Activities, as diverse as generation,

settlements,dispatching,frequency linked tariff,and
customer relations are getting seamlessly integrated on-

•Privatization,competition,computerization, sleek
designs,compact foot prints,advanced engineering
materials are all aiding these trend settings.
3. Automations

•Electric industry used to have the hardware and the

technicians as its backbone.

•In some utilities remote actuation devices like

sectionalizes,automatic switches, autoreclosers
motorized ACBs etc have been in use for many years.

•But these systems have been slower, taking seconds

and minutes when compared to resolutions in milli and
micro seconds in vogue currently .
4. Data flow

• Utilities are installing LAN(Local Area

Network)in the substations,and connected to
WAN(Wide Area Network) of the utility.
•Higher bandwidth provided by LAN/WAN is
allowing much faster data transfer and useful
•Scada has brought high degree of reliability.
•It would be a nightmare to operate large modern
grids without Scada, waiting for crew to drive out
and operate the CBs manually, entailing long
outages for clients.
5. Equipment monitoring
•While load demands are rising utilities are not finding it
affordable to fast replace or supplement the equipment.

•Substation devices that run on 100%Plus overload have

to be watched meticulously.

•Utilities rely on monitors and diagnostic tools and

software programs.

•Visual line or substation inspections or periodic DGA

testing are no more tolerable.

•On-line computer aided monitoring is pre-requisite for

high tech & efficient service
6.Condition monitoring

•Older programs created panic whenever a single

parameter would be unusual.
•On-line techniques co-relate many others to the one
•For decades, maintenance intervals were set and
•Now reliability has overtaken the rituals.
•Periodic maintenance is coming to an end.
•Condition monitoring is tool to get most out of
existing equipment & to cut costs.
7.Maintenance Intervals
•Maintenance intervals are no more as per schedule
but as dictated by monitoring.

•On-Load-Tap-Changers(OLTC),for example,may
have checks scheduled after 20,000 operations, but
monitoring of load current, temp;and oil (for
combustibles) may allow far more number of

•Each device is to be treated differently.

•Device with history is monitored & maintained more