Alstom’s resin impregnated paper transformer bushing has passed an impressive, first of its kind internal arc test. This test demonstrates the bushing’s capacity to improve the safety and reliability of power transmission equipment and grids. While this type of test is typical for other electrical components, it is an absolute first for transformer bushings. In developing this new technical solution for high and ultra-high voltage equipment, Alstom’s experts aim was to improve safety. Tests on the 420 kV resin impregnated paper transformer bushing prototype were successfully conducted in October 2013 at ZKU, the independent high voltage and high power test laboratory in Prague, Czech Republic.
Bushings are designed to control the electric field and allow a secure passage of electricity through transformer tank walls. The recent tests demonstrated the resin impregnated paper bushing’s resistance to explosion in the event of a severe internal electrical fault and subsequent pressure build-up. While rare, such events can endanger staff and equipment. The resin impregnated paper bushing utilises state-of-the-art composite insulators, which are designed to break down rather than explode. This greatly reduces the risk of injury and fire.
While many traditional bushings rely on a ceramic enclosure, utilities are increasingly turning to composite insulators, such as Alstom’s resign impregnated paper, for greater safety. Compared to oil impregnated paper bushings, resin impregnated paper technology is fire and explosion safe. Further, due to the fact that the bushing is oil free, its environmental impact is significantly reduced.
The internal arc test reproduced the heat and pressure of a fault related to an internal short circuit. To do this, Alstom’s 420 kV resin impregnated paper bushing was subjected to a short circuit current of 63 kA for 0.5 seconds. The value of the total injected energy during the test amounted to an impressive 13 MJ – the equivalent of a 1000 kg mass launched at a speed of 580 km/h. Captured on film, the bushing successfully resisted explosion thereby passing the safety test.
In 2011, Alstom was the first in the world to perform an internal arc test on a 420 kV bushing based on traditional oil impregnated paper technology. Today, it has repeated this achievement with the new 420 kV bushing using resin impregnated paper technology.
For more information: http://www.alstom.com/grid/products-and-services/high-voltage-power-products/bushing-for-ultra-high-voltage/bushings-news/
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