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Digital protection schemes

Name: Deepak Soni

REg. no. 11103365
Roll no. a13
For a modern power system, selective high speed
clearance of faults on high voltage transmission
lines is critical and this term paper indicates the
efficient and promising implementations for fault
detection, classification and fault location in
power transmission line protection. The work
done in this area favor computerized relays,
digital communication technologies and other
technical developments, to avoid cascading
failures and facilitate safer, secure and reliable
power systems.[1]
Efforts have been made to include almost all the
techniques and philosophies of power system
protection. The focus of this article is on the most
recent techniques, like artificial neural network,
fuzzy logic, fuzzy-neuro, fuzzy logic wavelet based
and phasor measurement unit-based concepts as
well as other conventional methods used in power
system protection.[3]
Protective relaying technology has evolved from
single function electromechanical units to static units
and now into the digital arena. The development of
low cost microprocessor technology has made
possible the digital relay where many relaying
functions can be combined into a single unit.
In the past, the engineer applied many relays with
proper planning; the digital relays can provide the
level of redundancy that was available in the past and
provide a better overall protective system. When
applying single function electromechanical relay, the
cost of each protective function needs to be justified
versus the added protection the relay provides.
In many cases, typically on less critical generators,
only minimal protection was applied in order to
reduce costs. Today, with digital relays, these
compromises do not need to be made. The
multifunction relays provide a high level of
protection at a very attractive cost. This allows the
protection engineer to design a complete protection
system with less concern about costs.[4],[6]

History of Protective Relay
Around 1980s the digital relay entered the market.
Compared to the Solid State Relay, the digital relay
takes the advantages of the development of
microprocessors and microcontrollers. Instead of
using analog signals, the digital relay converts all
measured analog quantities into digital signals.
Digital protection relays is a revolution step in
changing Relay technology.
In Digital Relay Microprocessors and micro
controllers are used in replacement of analogue
circuits used in static relays to implement relay
functions. Digital protection relays introduced in
However, such technology will be completely
superseded within the next five years by numerical
By the mid-1990s the solid state and
electromechanical relay had been mostly replaced by
digital relay in new construction. In distribution
applications, the replacement by the digital relay
proceeded a bit more slowly.
While the great majority of feeder relays in new
applications today are digital, the solid state relay still
sees some use where simplicity of the application
allows for simpler relays, and which allows one to
avoid the complexity of digital relays.[3], [6]
Measuring principles
Compared to static relays, digital relays introduce
Analogue to Digital Convertor (A/D conversion) of
all measured analogue quantities and use a
microprocessor to implement the protection
The microprocessor may use some kind of counting
technique, or use the Discrete Fourier Transform
(DFT) to implement the algorithm.
The Microprocessors used in Digital Relay have
limited processing capacity and memory compared to
that provided in numerical relays. [3], [6]
Function of Relay
The functionality tends therefore to be limited and
restricted largely to the protection function itself.

Additional functionality compared to that provided

by an electromechanical or static relay is usually
available, typically taking the form of a wider range
of settings, and greater accuracy. A communications
link to a remote computer may also be provided.
The limited power of the microprocessors used in
digital relays restricts the number of samples of the
waveform that can be measured per cycle. This, in
turn, limits the speed of operation of the relay in
certain applications. Therefore, a digital relay for a
particular protection function may have a longer
operation time than the static relay equivalent.
However, the extra time is not significant in terms of
overall tripping time and possible effects of power
system stability.[4],[2]
Operation of Relay
Digital relay consists of:
1. Analogue input subsystem,
2. Digital input subsystem,
3. Digital output subsystem,
4. A processor along with RAM (data scratch pad),
5. main memory (historical data file) and
6. Power supply

4. Multiple functions: Relays, meters, control

switches, indicators, and communication devices can
be integrated into a single microprocessor-based
protective relay. Substation/system schematics and
wiring diagrams are easy to generate due to the
reduced number of devices and related wiring.
5. Reduced commissioning time: Commissioning is
a process of verifying the performance of an
equipment before it is put into operation.
Microprocessor based relays have metering features
commissioning, simple and less time consuming.
6. Less outage time: Fast operation and fault
location capability of microprocessor based relays for
transmission line protection reduce the power outage
time considerably. When relays, without a fault
location capability, detect a fault, crew spends a lot of
time in finding the location of the fault by patrolling
the line.
7. Flexibility: Digital relays can be designed and
built using general purpose hardware. A relay can be
used to protect different power system components
by loading different software programs.
8. Small size: Digital relays are lighter in weight and
need less space than the electromechanical and solidstate relays. For this reason, digital relays are easy to
9. Easy replacement: Due to economical advantage,
digital relays, if fail, can be replaced in full. This
saves time and labor needed for repairs.

Digital relaying involves digital processing of one or

more analog signals in three steps:
1. Conversion of analogue signal to digital form
2. Processing of digital form
3. Boolean decision to trip or not to trip.
Advantages of Digital Relay
1. Economical: The major reason for the acceptance
of digital relays is that they present many features at
reasonable price.
2. Fast operation: There are two reasons for fast
operation of digital relays. One, digital relays barely
use any mechanical parts. Two, the use of high speed
processors have made these relays very fast.
3. Self monitoring: Digital relays monitor
themselves continuously. On the other hand,
electromechanical relays must be tested by personnel
at regular intervals. Self monitoring feature saves
time as well as money.



The function of the analogdigital converter is to

convert the sampled values into digital form, usually
an 8 or 16 bit word. The digital data are then passed
along to the microprocessor in which algorithms act
upon it to mathematically produce phasor
representations of the measured quantities. Various
algorithms then manipulate the phasor quantities to
produce results required for making relaying
Protection engineers need to identify the input
quantities required by the specific type and model of
numerical relay applied. Additional input quantities
that might be needed include signals that indicate
breaker position, that reset targets, that enable pilot
logic, that indicate the status of pilot receivers, along
with various other types of similar signals.
Some microprocessor relays are designed as discreet
replacements for electromechanical relays. Such
designs often allow the relay to be directly inserted
into the case that housed the electromechanical relay
that is replaced.

The number of protection and control functions

available in numerical relays can vary from a few to
meet simple or specialized needs to a number suitable
for providing complete protection for a line terminal
or a generator. A simple design may include several
over current elements. A design that is little more
complex may add automatic reclosing functions
along with the over current elements. As noted
earlier, a more complex relay may include all
functions required for protecting a specific power
system facility along with logic to provide control for
the facility.[7] [8] [9]
Programable logic controller
electromechanical relays as logic elements. PLCs use
a digital computer with a stored program, which
emulates the interconnection of many relays to
perform certain logical tasks. The programing for
PLCs is keyed in as input and displayed as ladder
Such diagrams represent logic as it occurs in
sequence in an elementary diagram form. The term
ladder is used for these diagrams because they
resemble a ladder and logic flows from rung to rung
since each line in the ladder is scanned sequentially
by the computer. A PLC has numerous input
terminals through which are inputted logical states
from a variety of elements such as sensors and
switches. Logical states can have only two positions,
which can be called high and low, on and
off, or 1 and 0. PLCs also have numerous
output terminals that can be used to initiate other
events such as to operate trip coils, energize
solinoids, or light lamps. The PLC program dictates
which output gets energized under which input
While the program by itself appears as a ladder logic
diagram, the related contacts and relay coils are
imaginary and imbedded into the control software.
PLC programs are entered and viewed by using a
computer connected to the PLCs programing port.
PLCs have the ability to communicate with numerical
relays and other digital devices..[7] [8] [9]
Applications of microprocessor-based relays
Protection personnel tend to be highly conservative
with regard to the application of new technology. It is
safer to adhere to what has been used in the past as
the benefits derived from trying something new are
slow to be recognized but problems encountered with
new applications pose significant risks.
Developing basic setting specifications for numerical
relays is a tedious process that requires significant
input data but, for the most part, is relatively
straightforward. A basic understanding of Boolean

expressions and methodologies is helpful in

developing the required programing to obtain the
desired logic and for effectively using the full power
that is designed into numerical relays. The
capabilities and power that are built into
microprocessor relay designs are continually
In addition to providing an array of protective
functions, capability to fulfill most of the control and
data acquisition requirements at substations is
provided. Many modern numerical relays possess the
power to replace other digital devices that are
required within substation control and data
acquisition systems such as PLCs, RTUs, meters, and
control switches. An obstacle to the practical use of
the expanded power that is made available in
microprocessor-based protective devices is the
complexity of the programing that is required to use
this power. [8] [9]
Attributes of microprocessor-based relays
The vast majority of relays currently manufactured
and purchased are microprocessor based. Some of the
major beneficial characteristics of numerical relays
that have propelled this movement include the
1. More protection for less cost.
2. Wiring simplification.
3. Greater flexibility.
4. Less maintenance requirements.
5. Reduction in panel spaceless devices required.
6. Event recording capability.
7. Ability to calculate and display distance to fault.
8. Data acquisition for metering.
9. Built-in logic for control and automation.
10. Self-checking capability.
11. Communication capabilityability to design
enhanced protection schemes.
12. Capability for remote interrogation and setting
13. Ability to change settings automatically based on
system conditions.
Some disadvantages of using microprocessor-based
relays that have been cited include the following:
1. Single failure may disable many protective
2. Instruction manuals are complicated and difficult
to understand.
3. Excessive input data required for settings and
4. Frequent firmware upgradescreate tracking and
documentation problems.
5. Difficulty in matching input software with relays,
especially when relays have been field modified.


Differential protection difficulties
Generally, three main difficulties handicap the
conventional differential protection. They induce the
differential relay to release a false trip signal without
the existing of any fault.
These complications must be overcome in order to
make the differential relay working properly [2], [3]:
1. Magnetizing inrush current during initial
2. CTs Mismatch and saturation,
3. Transformation ratio changes due to Tap changer.
Magnetizing inrush current
This phenomenon, the transient magnetizing inrush
or the exciting current, occurs in the primary side of
the transformer whenever the transformer is switched
on (energized) and the instantaneous value of the
voltage is not at 90o. At this time, the first peak of the
flux wave is higher than the peak of the flux at the
steady state condition. This current appears as an
internal fault, and it is sensed as a differential current
by the differential relay. The value of the first peak of
the magnetizing current may be as high as several
times the peak of the full load current. The magnitude
and duration of the magnetizing inrush current is
influenced by many factors, some of these factors are
[2], [6], [7];
1) The instantaneous value of the voltage waveform at
the moment of closing CB.
2) The value of the residual (remnant) magnetizing
3) The sign of the residual magnetizing flux.
4) The type of the iron laminations used in the
transformer core.
5) The saturation flux density of the transformer core.
6) The total impedance of the supply circuit.
7) The physical size of the transformer.
8) The maximum flux-carrying capability of the iron
core laminations.
9) The input supply voltage level.
The effect of the inrush current on the differential
relay is false tripping the transformer without of any
existing type of faults. From the principle of
operation of the differential relay, the relay compares
the currents coming from both sides of the power
transformer as explained above. However, the inrush
current is flowing only in the primary side of the
power transformer. So that, the differential current
will have a significant value due to the existence of
current in only one side. Therefore, the relay has to
be designed to recognize that this current is a normal
phenomenon and to not trip due to this current.

False trip due to C.T characteristics

The performance of the differential relays depends on
the accuracy of the CTs in reproducing their primary
currents in their secondary side. In many cases, the
primary ratings of the CTs, located in the high
voltage and low voltage sides of the power
transformer, does not exactly match the power
transformer rated currents. Due to this discrepancy, a
CTs mismatch takes place, which in turn creates a
small false differential current, depending on the
amount of this mismatch. Sometimes, this amount of
the differential current is enough to operate the
differential relay. Therefore, CTs ratio correction has
to be done to overcome this CTs mismatch by using
interposing CTs of multi taps [8].
Another problem that may face the perfect operation
of the CTs is the saturation problem. When saturation
happens to one or all CTs at different levels, false
differential current appears in the differential relay.
This differential current could cause mal-operation of
the differential relay. The dc component of the
primary side current could produce the worst case of
CT saturation. In which, the secondary current
contains dc offset and extra harmonics [9], [10].
False trip due to tap changer
On-Load Tap-Changer (OLTC) is installed on the
power transformer to control automatically the
transformer output voltage. This device is required
wherever there are heavy fluctuations in the power
system voltage. The transformation ratio of the CTs
can be matched with only one point of the tapchanging range. Therefore, if the OLTC is changed,
unbalance current flows in the differential relay
operating coil. This action causes CTs mismatches.
This current will be considered as a fault current
which makes the relay to release a trip signal [11],
Digital differential protection
Many digital algorithms have been used so far after
the invention of the computer. These algorithms do
the same job with different accuracy and speed. The
acceptable speed according to IEEE standard for
transformer protection is 100 msec. All modern
algorithms are faster than this IEEE standard.
Nowadays, there are some algorithms performs their
function in less than 10 msec. In this chapter, a fast
algorithm is introduced. Its speed is in the range of 1
to 15 msec. This algorithm is based on the Fast
Fourier algorithm (FFT). This algorithm is not new,
however, significant changes has been introduced to
make it much faster.
The proposed digital differential relay is designed
using a simulation technique in Matlab Simulink
environment. The design is implemented to protect

the power transformer against internal faults and

prevent interruption due to inrush currents.
This algorithm is built on the principle of harmonic
current restraint, where the magnetizing-inrush
current is characterized by large harmonic
components content that are not noticeably present in
fault currents. Due to the saturated condition of the
transformer iron, the waveform of the inrush current
is highly distorted. The amplitude of the harmonics,
compared with the fundamental is somewhere
between 30% to 60% and the third harmonic 10% to
30%. The other harmonics are progressively less [3]
[6], [13]. Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) is used to
implement this approach.
In general, any periodic signal f(t) can be
decomposed to its sine and cosine components as

Where: a0 is the DC component of the f (t), and Ck, Sk

are the cosine and sine coefficients of the frequencies
present in f(t), respectively. The discrete forms of the
coefficients Ck, Sk are expressed in the following

The Fourier harmonic coefficients can be expressed

as [13]:

Where: Fkis the Kth harmonic coefficient for k = 1,

2,...,N and x(n) is the signal f(t) in its discrete form.
The FFT produces exactly the same results as the
DFT; however, the FFT is much faster than DFT,
where the speed of calculation is the main factor in
this process [13-16].
Fig 1 illustrates the flow chart of the designed digital
Fourier Transform based logic technique algorithm.
In this algorithm the output currents of the CTs
undergo over two analysis processes, amplitude
comparison process and harmonic content calculation
process. The amplitude comparison between the
RMS values of the CTs output current ( |Id1 Id2| ) is
in the left hand side of the flowchart, and the
harmonic calculation is in the right hand side of the
The software is implemented according to the
following steps [13-16]:
Step 1. Reading data from the CTs.
Step 2. Data calculation, which is given as follows;
For the amplitude calculation, if the absolute
difference ( |Id1 Id2| ) between the CTs output
currents is greater than zero the logic (1) takes place,
which indicates the case of an inrush current or an
internal fault. Otherwise, the logic (0) takes place,
which indicates a detection of an external fault.

Fig. 1 Flow chart of the proposed Digital Differential Relay Scheme

Step 3. Taking the final decision: If the logic cases
In the meantime, the harmonic calculation is
received from both cases (a & b) in step two are both
performed. If the percentage value of the second
(1), that indicates a detection of an internal fault.
harmonic amplitude is in the range of (0.3 to 0.6) of
Then a trip signal is released to stop the simulation.
the fundamental component amplitude, then the logic
For the other logic options of (0,1) means an external
(0) occurs, that means recognition of inrush current.
fault, (1,0) means an inrush current, or (0,0) indicate
Otherwise, the logic (1) takes place, which indicates
an occurrence of an inrush current or an external
a detection of an internal or external fault.
fault, and the simulation goes back to step two to start
the calculation again for the next sample.

The fault selection algorithm is based on the autocorrelation technique of two half successive cycles
with the same polarity. For transmission lines
protection, this method needs only three line-current
measurements available at the relay location (ia, ib,
A. Correlation Coefficients Calculation
The auto-correlation coefficient is estimated as
follows for any two dependant variables, y1(x) and
y2(x) [15].
The auto-correlation coefficient (r) calculated as

Where, Ns = the number of samples per cycle used in

the simulation
r: empirical correlation coefficient of y1 (x), and
y1 (x): is the initial instantaneous value of the current
at time t0.
y2 (x): is the instantaneous value of the current at
next cycle.
Y1,Y2: arithmetic means of y1 (x) and y2 (x),

The strength of linear association between two

variables is quantified by the correlation coefficient
(r), its value lies between - 1 and +1 [15].
B. Fault Detection and Faulty Phase Selection
To implement our technique, three tasks are starting
in parallel: fault detection, fault confirmation, and
faulty phase selection as follows:
(1) Fault Detection (Initiation)
A transition is detected if: I > 20% In, where In is
the line nominal current.
(2) Faulty Phase Selection
Fault confirmation and faulty phase selection are
done according to the following sequences.

Three-phase current correlation coefficients values

are calculated. If fault is detected, phase current
correlation values are sorted in ascending order and
- If fault is detected, phase current correlation values
are sorted into ascending order and compared. The
possible fault cases are:
(a) If the three-phase correlation coefficients are
nearly equal and their values are less than 0.7, then
the fault is three-phase fault
- If ra = rb = rc < 0.7, the fault is three-phase (a-b-c
(b) If the two-phase correlation coefficients are equal
and their values are nearly 1, while the third phase
correlation coefficient is less than 0.7, the fault is
single-phase to ground
- If ra < 0.7, rb = 1, rc = 1, the fault is single phasetoground fault (a-g fault)
- If rb < 0.7, ra = 1, rc = 1, the fault is single phasetoground fault (b-g fault)
- If rc < 0.7, ra = 1, rb = 1, the fault is single phasetoground fault (c-g fault)
(c) If the two-phase correlation coefficients are equal
and their values are less than 0.7, while the third
phase correlation coefficient is nearly 1, the fault is
double phase-to-ground fault.
- If ra = rb < 0.7, rc = 1 the fault is double
phase-to-ground fault (a-b-g fault)
- If rb = rc < 0.7, ra = 1 the fault is double
phase-to-ground fault (b-c-g fault)
- If ra = rc < 0.7, rb = 1 the fault is double
phase-to-ground fault (a-c-g fault)
(d) If the three-phase correlation coefficients are not
equal and their values: one phase is less than 0.3,
second phase is less than 0.7, while the third phase
alienation coefficient is nearly 1, the fault is phase-tophase fault.
- If ra < 0.7, rb < 0.7, rc = 1 the fault is phase-tophase fault (a-b fault)
- If rb < 0.7, rc < 0.7, ra = 1 the fault is phase-tophase fault (b-c fault)
- If ra < 0.7, rc < 0.7, rb = 1 the fault is phase-tophase fault (a-c fault)
- To make sure of distinguishing between double
phase and double phase-to-ground faults, the cross
correlation between the two phase currents of the
faulted phases is calculated.
If the value of cross-correlation is nearly -1, the fault
is double phase fault.
- If rab = -1 the fault is phase-to-phase (a-b fault)
otherwise the fault is double phase-toground (a-b-g

- If rbc = -1
otherwise the
- If rac = -1
otherwise the

the fault is phase-to-phase (b-c fault)

fault is double phase-toground (b-c-g
the fault is phase-to-phase (a-c fault)
fault is double phase-toground (a-c-g


Any intentional or unintentional change in an
electrical network is accompanied by transients,
which is a natural process by which the power system
moves from one steady state condition to another.
The duration of these transients can vary from a few
microseconds to milliseconds and can be broadly
classified into those having an impulsive or an
oscillatory nature. Faults in power system typically
cause low frequency oscillatory type of transients, the
spectral content of which is less than 5 kHz, before
settling into the post fault steady state condition.
Since the transient information is not obvious in the
time domain representation of signals obtained from
the Current Transformers (CT) and Potential
transformation has to be applied to extract the
required information. The required information is the
frequency spectrum of the signal during transients
and its time localization.
The voltage and current signals obtained from the
power system are analog signals. In order to do
further processing of these signals by digital
techniques, they have to be converted into digital
signals. Hence, a signal processing unit is the first
stage of any digital/numerical relay. The proposed
scheme depends on extracting embedded information
from the transients generated during faults and
disturbances. For 50 and 60 Hz systems, the
frequency band of 0 to 1000 Hz is found to be more
informative. The transducers here are the CT and PT,
with their burdens, which also provide the necessary
A second order Butterworth low pass filter with a
cut-off frequency of 800 Hz is used for anti-aliasing.
The frequency band of interest for this work is 500 to
1000 Hz. Hence, the sample and hold unit has a
sampling frequency of 2 kHz, which is twice the
highest frequency of interest. The multiplexer is an
array of analog switches controlled by digital logic.

Analog to Digital Converter (ADC) of 16 bit output

is assumed.
Busbar Protection
The disturbances are detected if the disturbance
signal is high for any one voltage signal. A
directional signal based on high frequency power
details is found for each phase of every connected
branch. A trip signal is issued for a phase, if the
directional signals for all the branches of that phase
are same. The overall block diagram of the proposed
algorithm for a busbar with N branches is given in
Fig.2 [12],[13,[16]

Fig 2. Block diagram of proposed scheme for busbar

Transformer Protection
As in the case of busbar protection, here also, the
disturbance detection for each phase is achieved. A
detect signal is issued if a disturbance is indicated in
any of the six voltage signals (3_ HV and LV). Six
power signals corresponding to three phases of two
windings are derived as per. In order to make the
protection scheme independent of the transformer
configuration, the directional signal is derived from
the total 3_ instantaneous power on HV and LV side.
The direction signals for HV and LV sides is the
cumulative sum of these total power signals. If the
directions of two signals are same, an internal fault is
indicated and trip is issued. Fig. 3 shows the
functional block diagram of the proposed scheme.

Fig 3 .Block diagram of proposed scheme for transformer protection




Enabling the introduction of new relaying

concepts capable to design smarter, faster, and
more reliable digital relays.
Examples of new concepts: integrated protection
schemes, adaptive protection & predictive


In fuzzy logic based protection system, accuracy

cannot be guaranteed for wide variations in system
conditions. So consequently a more dependable and
secure relaying algorithm during real time
implementation is needed for classifying the faults
under a variety of time-varying network
configurations. The fuzzy-neuro approaches are
sensitive to system frequency changes and require
large training sets and a large number of neurons

affecting their accuracy and speed in protecting large

power networks. [12],[13,[16]

This termpaper has described the development

concepts behind new series of digital relays and
some example applications.
This new series of digital relays is the realization
of a number of development concepts, including
a compact design contributing to reduction of
wiring, more precise analog data processing,

characteristics, and a configuration that uses
replaceable units.
High demands are imposed on power
transformer protective relays. Requirements
include dependability (no missing operations),
security (no false tripping), and speed of
operation (short fault clearing time). The
operating conditions of power transformers do
not make the relaying task easy. Protection of
large power transformers is one of the most
challenging problems in the power system
relaying area. Advanced digital signal
processing techniques and artificial intelligence
(Al) approaches to power system protection
provide the means to enhance the classical
protection principles and facilitate faster, more
secure, and dependable protection for power
Also, it is anticipated that, in the near future,
more measurements will be available to
transformer relays, owing to both substation
integration and novel sensors installed on power
transformers. All of this will change the practice
for power transformer protection. This article
briefly reviews the state of the art, but is
primarily devoted to discussion of new
approaches and future directions in digital
relaying for power transformers.
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Piscataway, NJ: IEEE Press, 1999.
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[4] M. S. Sachdev, T. S. Sidhu, H. C. Wood, A
Digital Relaying Algorithm for Detecting
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[5] K. Yabe, Power Differential Method for
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Magnetizing Inrush Current in Transformers,
IEEE Transactions on Power Delivery,
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[6] A. R. Van C. Warrington, Protective Relays

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[13] M. A. Rahman, Y.V.V.S. Murthy and Ivi
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[14] P.K. Dash and M.A. Rahman, "A New
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[15] A. Gangopadhay, M.A. Rahman, B.
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[16] M.A. Rahman and A. Gangopadhay,
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