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Article Date: 20th December 2018

ABB Power Quality - Power Consulting Identifies the Root of Power Quality Issues

Power Quality - Transport Networks - Vehicle Charging - Energy Storage

ABB Power Quality - power quality issues

We’ve all experienced the consequences of poor power quality. Symptoms can include a flicker on your PC, equipment breakdown or even a complete network blackout. For operators of transport networks, poor power quality can potentially cause significant loss of revenues as a result of equipment failures, downtime, reduced customer satisfaction and potential penalties for delayed or cancelled services.

For operators of rail networks and electric vehicle charging infrastructure, ABB’s power quality solutions include FACTS (Flexible Alternating Current Transmission Systems), shunt reactors, battery energy storage systems or uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems, passive filters, and surge arrestors, as well as static frequency converters.

One customer that has benefited from ABB’s approach to power quality consulting is High Speed 1 (HS1), the 109 km high speed route connecting St Pancras International to the Channel Tunnel at Dover.

Whereas the route is powered on the 2 x 25 kV principle, HS1 was experiencing voltage drops, with some sections of the line experiencing voltages as low as 17.5 kV. The result was a loss of overall system performance and unexpected tripping of protection and control equipment.

An international team of ABB power quality experts delivered out a detailed investigation, including site surveying and measurement. The team then recommended a bespoke solution based on 17 bespoke capacitive compensation filter units at nine substations along the route.

Each of the units was manufactured from a 6.4 MVAr (Mega Volt Ampere reactive) capacitor bank and a 303 mH (milli Henry) inductor, as well as associated protection and control equipment and a switch-disconnector to enable isolation from the network for maintenance. The units have been operating successfully since 2012. 

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