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A summary of Protection Relays

Electrical Engineering is comprises of three main categories

Generation
Transmission
Distribution

All of three categories required Protection elements to work smoothly and


will not only save equipment but also human in contact with the operation of
these equipment.
Main Intention of each and every energy utility is to generate ,transmit and
distribute power smoothly but due to uncertain nature of energy, load
fluctuation, abnormal condition etc it is never near to ok.
Although there are many protective devices to protect system from
abnormal/uncertain conditions but we need to discuss Protection Relays,
which are compact devices used to signal the fault presence in system, they
only signal and nothing else rest of isolation work will be in the portfolio of
other coordinated equipment i.e. Circuit breakers.
We can say Relay differentiates between normal and abnormal conditions
(Faults) of allocated circuit. From now on we called abnormal condition by
name of FAULT.
Characteristics of Relay
If I am selecting some equipment(Protection Relay) to protect my
equipment , my main requirements are

Reliable
Selective
Speed
Sensitive
Stable

It would be reliable so I can ensure the client that your equipment is under
the supervision of device which definitely detect any abnormal condition in
system
It would be selective , now here the concept of Zones is appeared , in
electrical system some equipment are used for transmission of

power(Overhead line, Cable) , some equipment used of increasing or leveling


up of voltages(Transformer), some equipment are used for the power
generation (Generator) and there are many other equipment which we later
on discuss, and some of these equipment need separate protection scheme
from other associated equipment so we used separate schemes in these
equipment which by operations are selective for related equipment.
Speed is main factor in any protection device, if relay operates fast it signal
fast to circuit breaker and circuit breaker isolate fault speedy , just for sake of
understanding the consequence just thinking if for some time our protective
relay failed to react speedy what happen when fault move faster than relay
and move to point where protection is not available or selective in nature
then this fault can damage/interrupt most of the power system.
Sensitivity is the main characteristic of any relay , but it is better to say relay
is itself a sensing device, what is use of it if it not remain sensitive to the
fault
Stable relay make Protection system stable, relay must have to stable upon
the designated number of operation and operational years assured by
manufacturer.
Primary and Back up Protection:
Every engineer must have to think of economical aspect when he is dealing
with engineering device application, I can say whenever equipment is
expansive you have to apply many protection layer on it to make it safer so
can avoid major financial loss. This can be one of the reasons for buckholz
relay use in 1000KVA transformer but not in 500KVA transformer.
Same concept is applied in protection engineering but addition here is the
point of Fault severity , by proper coordination relay at one substation can
act as back up relay for other substation,