UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

High impedance fault detection in power distribution systems with impedance-based methods in frequency domain Liang, Zhibang


High Impedance Faults (HIFs) in electrical distribution systems generally present serious public safety hazards, utility liability problems and equipment damage due to a risk of arcing ignition of fires. However, it is extremely difficult to detect HIFs in electrical distribution systems by conventional overcurrent relays or fuses because they do not generate enough fault current to be detectable. This thesis presents a new detection scheme for HIFs in electrical distribution systems based on observing the harmonic content in the one-sided amplitude spectrum of the impedance. The proposed new HIF detection algorithm can distinguish HIF events from other non-fault events with current waveforms that similar to HIF current waveforms. Four simulation cases have been tested in this thesis to verify the new HIF detection algorithm. The simulation results indicate a potential ability to establish a high impedance fault detection function block in BC Hydro’s distribution system protective devices.

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