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This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been

fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 1

Application of a SFCL for Fault Ride-Through


Capability Enhancement of DG in a Micro-Grid
System and Relay Protection Coordination
Huiwen He, Lei Chen, Member, IEEE, Ting Yin, Zhaojun Cao, Jun Yang, Xiude Tu, and Li Ren

AbstractConcerning that a short-circuit fault happens inside


Rmoa Ir
a micro-grid system, parts of distributed generation (DG) units
may not meet the fault ride-through (FRT) requirements, and will Ics
be enforced to disconnect. This paper suggests a modified S1 L1
I1
flux-coupling-type superconducting fault current limiter (SFCL) M
to improve the DGs FRT capability, and investigates the relay Us Zs
Is
L2
protection coordination in the micro-grid. The SFCLs structural SC
I2
principle is introduced, and according to the fault characteristic
S load
of the micro-grid under its grid-connected and islanded statuses,
the modified SFCLs application fields are conducted. Further, Fig. 1. Structure of the suggested flux-coupling-type SFCL.
the directional overcurrent protection and differential protection isolated from the main network, and aims to achieve a stable
are proposed for the micro-grids two statuses, respectively. Based
power balance between the local loads and the DG units [3].
on the transient simulations in the MATLAB, the SFCLs positive
effects on enhancing the DGs FRT capability can be confirmed, Note that, when a short-circuit fault happens inside the
and also it will not affect the relay protection coordination. A micro-grid system, parts of the DG units may not meet the fault
comparison of the conventional distance relay protection and the ride-through (FRT) requirements, and they will be enforced to
proposed protection scheme is performed, and the latter has a disconnect [4]. Moreover, the fault current characteristics of the
better applicability than the former to match the SFCL. Finally, micro-grid under grid-connected and islanded modes are
regarding the impacts of fault type and fault resistance on the
significantly different, and the configuration scheme of the
FRT operation and the proposed protection, technical discussions
are performed preliminarily, and the application value of the protective relays will be accordingly adjusted. To improve the
SFCL integrated with the proposed protection is clarified further. service stabilities and operation reliabilities of the DG and
micro-grid, the study of a feasible countermeasure to deal with
Index TermsDistributed generation (DG), Fault ride-through the fault is necessary, and meanwhile this countermeasure
(FRT) capability, Flux-Coupling-Type SFCL, Micro-Grid system, should well coordinate with the protective relays.
Relay protection coordination. Superconducting fault current limiter (SFCL) can be
conducted as one of the best approaches to solve the problems
related to a short-circuit fault [5]-[7]. In fact, the FRT capability
I. INTRODUCTION
improvement may be regarded as the expanded application of a

A MICRO-GRID can be regarded as a small electric power


system including a plurality of distributed generation (DG)
units and local loads [1], [2]. Technically, a micro-grid system
SFCL [8]-[10]. Note that, when the generation unit is served as
a DG of the micro-grid, using a SFCL should closely coordinate
with the micro-grid protection. Based on the existing studies
can operate in either grid-connected mode or islanded mode. [11]-[14], the protection of a micro-grid cannot be achieved
For the former, the micro-grid is connected to the main network, with the same philosophies that have been used to protect
and is able to carry out a flexible power exchange to maximize traditional distribution systems. For example, if the overcurrent
expected operational benefits. For the latter, the micro-grid is protective relays are set for higher fault currents under the
grid-connected mode, their response will become too slow
under the islanded mode, or even they cannot operate reliably
Manuscript received 2 March 2016. This work was supported in part by the
National Natural Science Foundation of China (51507117), and Natural as lower fault currents. Therefore, the other protective relays,
Science Foundation of Hubei Province of China (2014CFB706). which are not sensitive to reduction of fault currents, should be
(Corresponding author: Lei Chen; e-mail: stclchen1982@163.com) introduced. From the aforementioned technical considerations,
H. He, T. Yin, and Z. Cao are with the State Key Laboratory of Power Grid
Environmental Protection, China Electric Power Research Institute, Wuhan directional overcurrent protection and differential protection
430074, China. could be configured, and also the impacts of a SFCL on the
L. Chen, J. Yang, and X. Tu are with the School of Electrical Engineering, protection coordination should be take into account [15], [16].
Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China.
L. Ren is with the State Key Laboratory of Advanced Electromagnetic
According to a modified flux-coupling-type SFCL proposed
Engineering and Technology, Huazhong University of Science and Technology by us in [17], [18], this paper studies the SFCLs effects on the
(HUST), Wuhan 430074, China. DGs FRT, and discusses the coordination of directional

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This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 2

this impedance will include resistive and inductive components


Main
network to affect the system or equipment. Compared with the original
flux-coupling-type SFCL which is purely inductive [20], the
modified SFCL is a resistive-inductive type (hybrid type)
SFCL, which can potentially bring more contributions, such as
inhibiting the fluctuations of active power and reactive power,
R1
PCC and providing critical protection to relevant power equipment
[21], [22]. The modified SFCL equipped with the coupling
R2 R4 R6 R8 transformer and the controlled switch has higher flexibility.
Compared with that the classical resistive type SFCL being
directly installed at the power system may possibly have longer
R3
recovery time, the current flowing through the modified
SFCL
R7 SFCLs superconducting coil can be adjusted by changing the
transformation ratio, and meanwhile the modified SFCL can
~

R5 R9
DG3 put into and out of operation with greater controllability of the
=

switch. Compared to a classical inductive type SFCL, the


Load 1 Load 2
DG1 DG2 modified SFCLs resistive impedance can affect the generation
units active power characteristics more efficiently. Thus, the
Fig. 2. Configuration of a typical micro-grid integrated with the SFCL.
modified SFCL is suggested as the solution to the FRT and
overcurrent relays and differential relays in a micro-grid system. relay protection coordination issues in the micro-grid system.
The article is organized as follows. Section II presents the
SFCLs structural principle, analyzes the micro-grids fault B. Fault Characteristic of a Micro-Grid with the SFCL
characteristic, proposes the protection coordination scheme and Fig. 2 shows the schematic diagram of a typical micro-grid
preliminarily explores the problems of the other conventional system integrated with the SFCL. In the micro-grid, three DG
protection schemes. In Section III, time-domain simulations are units are included, and two of them are the inverter interfaced
done in the MATLAB/SIMULINK, so as to assess the SFCLs DGs (IIDGs) which have highly variable characteristics and
effects and the proposed protection schemes performance should meet FRT requirements. For the rest one, it is a
behaviors. Section IV does a technical discussion on the fault synchronous type DG, which does not need FRT operation.
type/resistance, and further clarifies the application value of the When the micro-grid is under its grid-connected mode, an
SFCL integrated with the proposed protection. In section V, internal short-circuit fault occurs at the transmission line. Thus,
conclusions are summarized and future works are prospected. the voltage over each of the DG units will be affected, and the
total fault currents flowing in the transmission line will be
II. THEORETICAL ANALYSIS provided by the main network and all of the DG units.
The fault current contributed by the main network is
A. Structural Principle of the Flux-Coupling-Type SFCL expressed as (1), and herein the thevenin equivalent of the main
The configuration of the modified flux-coupling-type SFCL network can be used for the theoretical derivation [23].
is shown in Fig. 1 [19]. This SFCL composes of a coupling I fault grid Vth / Zth (1)
transformer (CT), a controlled switch S1, a superconducting where Vth denotes the thevenin voltage of the main network; Zth
coil (SC), and a metal oxide arrester (MOA). L1, L2 are the is the thevenin impedance being a function of fault distance.
self-inductances of the coils, and M is the mutual inductance; Zs For the fault currents being contributed by the local DG units,
is the circuit impedance, and Sload is the power load. the fault contributions will be generally constrained by the DG
In normal condition, the switch S1 is closed, and the SC is in types and DG capacities, and the equations are obtained as:
the zero-resistance state. Herein, the CTs operating impedance I fault DGi I ratedDGi 2 i 1, 2 (2)
Zct will play a decisive role on the SFCLs performance, and it
I fault DGi I ratedDGi 5 kd i 3 (3)
can be deduced that Zct=jL2(1-k2)n2/(n2+2kn+1), where
k M / L1 L2 and n L1 / L2 . In the case of k 1, Zct 0, When the micro-grid is under the islanded mode, the internal
fault occurs, and only (2) and (3) should be considered. The
and the non-inductive coupling can be obtained. Since the coefficients 2 and 5 are according to the concrete types of the
MOA is connected in parallel with the CT, the MOA is DG units, and as the fault currents of the IIDGs do not vary with
supposed to be short-circuited. On this occasion, introducing fault location but with their control loops, the impact factor kd is
the SFCL will have no influence on the main circuit. only applied to the synchronous type DG for calculating its
Once the short-circuit fault happens, the switch S1 will be fault contribution at distant points in the micro-grid [24], [25].
opened rapidly, and meanwhile the MOA can suppress the In this paper, using the SFCL is expected to assist the IIDGs
switching overvoltage. As the electromagnetic relationship is to achieve FRT operation under the internal fault, and thus the
changed by the controlled switch, the non-inductive coupling SFCL is installed at the integration point of the DG1 and DG2.
will pass away, and also the fault current in the SC will make To ensure the rapidity and sensitivity of the protective relays
the superconductor be quenching. It can be derived that configured at the transmission line, the SFCL is not applied into
ZSFCL=[RSC+jL2+(knL2)2/(Rmoa+n2jL2)]. In view of Rmoa the point of common coupling (PCC) to limit the fault current
n2L2, ZSFCLRSC+jL2 can be approximately obtained, and

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This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 3

from the main network, and also the SFCL is not applied into RS
the DG3 to reduce its fault current contribution (this philosophy
is conducive to fault identification for the islanded micro-grid). Rn
It should be specially pointed out, if the fault happens outside

R/
First recovery-starting Secondary recovery-starting
the micro-grid, the SFCL can be installed at the PCC to guard time time
the entire micro-grid and DG units, but it is not the scope of this Quench-starting
time
article. Further works will be reported in later articles.
0 t0 t1 t2 t3
C. Relay Protection Coordination in the Micro-Grid Time (s)
The protection of a micro-grid can be categorized into three Fig. 3. Quench/recovery of the superconducting coil in the modified SFCL.
parts, which are for the transmission lines, the loads and the DG
sources [26]. Herein, the protection which detects and isolates a
fault occurring at main transmission lines, is specially studied.
If the micro-grid is detected to be under the grid-connected
mode, the directional overcurrent protection is used for each of
the transmission lines. Taking the faulted transmission line for
an objective to study the protection settings, the operation
characteristics of the primary overcurrent relay (R4) and the
back-up overcurrent relay (R1) can be expressed as:
A
t primary [ p B] TDS primary (4)
M primary 1
A
tback up [ B] TDSback up (5)
up 1
p Fig. 4. Different fault ride through (FRT) curves of a defined stay-connected
M back
time for IIDG.
where A, B, p denote the inverse, very inverse, and extremely
inverse types of the overcurrent relay, respectively, and their Note that, the proposed protection scheme is still a
values are set as 3.922, 0.0982, and 2, respectively. It is also preliminary idea from the perspective of identifying the fault
p
obtained that M primary ( I fault grid I fault DGi ) / I pick up , primary and current. According to the change of operation mode of the
micro-grid, the overcurrent protection and the differential
up ( I fault grid ) / I pick up , back up , and the coordination time
p
M back protection will correspondingly play its role. In respect to the
(CTI) between the primary and back-up relays is expressed as: reason selection for this proposed protection scheme, it should
CTI tback up t primary (6) be compared with some conventional protection schemes.
Therefore, the authors do a brief discussion on the problems of
The acceptable range for CTI is 0.2 s~0.5 s. Note that, the
the other conventional protection schemes used in the
fault currents which are respectively sensed by the primary and
micro-grid, and herein distance protection and voltage-based
back-up relays will change, in case of installation of a new DG
protection schemes are selectively adopted. For the former, the
unit or the presence of a DG unit with intermittent nature, and
distance rely is only able to operate when faults happens
the CTI may possibly not meet the demand [27]. Nevertheless,
between the relay and the selected reach point, and once the
the coordination can be ensured by considering the modified
fault resistance in the measurement admittance is considered,
SFCLs current-limiting effects on the IIDGs.
the presence of DG units may make the relays measured
If the micro-grid is detected to be under the islanded mode,
impedance be more complicated. In addition, concerning the
the current differential protection will spontaneously replace
short transmission lines in the micro-grid, it may be difficult to
the overcurrent protection to play the role. In normal condition,
measure the relay admittance. For the latter, the voltage-based
the transmission line can be equivalent to a node, and the
protection will introduce voltage sensors to guard the
currents flowing in and out of the transmission line are equal to
micro-grid system against short-circuit faults, and the two basic
each other. When a short-circuit fault happens at the
problems of this kind of protection can be concluded as: 1) its
transmission line, the summation of the two currents will be
sensitivity should be enhanced further when the micro-grid is
corresponding to the fault current. Since the current differential
under the grid-connected mode; 2) in case of protection
protection is not sensitive to bidirectional power flow and
disoperation, voltage drop will seriously affect the DG units in
reduction of fault current [28], it is suitable for the islanded
the micro-grid. Admittedly, each of protection schemes has its
micro-grid. The mathematical equation related to the
suitable scope of application. During the following transient
differential protections operational characteristic is defined as:
. . . .
simulation analysis, the distance relay protection is selected as
I m I n K res I m I n (7) a representative of conventional protection schemes, and this
protections performance is compared to that of the proposed
where Kres is the restraint coefficient being set as 0.5; Im and In protection scheme.
are the currents in the differential relays (R4 and R5 shown in
Fig. 2), and the positive direction of each of the currents is from III. SIMULATION STUDY
the associated bus towards the transmission line. In this section, a simulation model corresponding to Fig. 2 is

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This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 4

4000 4000
(a) (a)

Line current (A)


Line current (A)

2000 2000

0 0

-2000 -2000

-4000 -4000
Fault occurrence Phase-A Fault occurrence Phase-A
Phase-B Phase-B
(b) 4000 Phase-C
10 Phase-C (b)
DG voltage (kV)

Line current (A)


5 2000

0 0
-5
-2000
-10
-4000
0.9 0.95 1 1.05 1.1 1.15 1.2 0.9 0.95 1 1.05 1.1 1.15 1.2
Time (s) Time (s)
Fig. 5. Fault characteristics of the micro-grid under the grid-connected mode in Fig. 7. Impacts of the distance protection on the fault current of the micro-grid
the case of without SFCL. (a) Line current and (b) DG voltage. under the grid-connected mode. (a) Without SFCL and (b) With the SFCL.
4000
(a)
defined stay-connected time for IIDG [35], [36]. From this
Line current (A)

2000
figure, the FRT requirement differs from one standard to the
0 other based on the countries grid code. During the simulations,
-2000 the Denmark code is selectively used, and in the case of that the
grid voltage drops to 20% of the nominal level, the IIDG should
-4000
remain the grid-connected state for a duration of 150 ms.
Fault occurrence Phase-A The types of the overcurrent relays may be according to the
Phase-B
10 Phase-C (b) related IEEE standard [37], and for the settings of the current
DG voltage (kV)

protection, the reasoning behind their selection can refer to [30],


5
[38], [39]. Herein, Ipick-up and TDS for R4 are respectively 5 A
0
and 1 s (the current transformers ratio is 5: 100), and for R1,
-5
they are respectively 8 A and 0.7 s. In addition, the parameter
-10 optimization can be further performed by use of an intelligent
0.9 0.95 1 1.05 1.1 1.15 1.2 algorithm such as particle swarm optimization (PSO) [40], [41].
Time (s)
Fig. 6. Fault characteristics of the micro-grid under the grid-connected mode in From the literature, it is inferred that, one optimal relay setting
the case of with the modified SFCL. (a) Line current and (b) DG voltage. that meets the micro-grids requirements can be obtained when
the SFCL is adopted. It may be needed to introduce some other
built in MATLAB, and the main parameters are indicated in
technical means to optimize the relays for satisfying the
Table I. Note that, the wind power/PV generation (namely DG1
micro-grids mode operations if the SFCL is not taken into
and DG2 in Fig. 2) will adopt the active powerreactive power
account. Concerning the parameter optimization, a brief
(P-Q) control [29], [30], and DG3 is a synchronous generator
discussion can be found in the following section IV.
which can be used to stabilize the micro-grid. For the modeling
of the SFCL, S1 is simulated by an anti-parallel IGBT pair, and TABLE I
MAIN SIMULATION PARAMETERS OF THE SYSTEM MODEL
the coupling transformer is based on a standard transformer
model from the MATLAB model library. The quench/recovery Demonstrated micro-grid system
model of the SC is shown in Fig. 3 [31]. The SCs recovery DG1 / DG2 / DG3 180 kW / 100 kW / 90 kW
time may be more than the fault clearance time, owing to that Transmission Line 0.27+j0.347 /km, 2 km
the heat accumulation can make the SC be quenching for some Load 1/ Load 2 260 kW/ 40 kW
time, and herein it is set as 0.5 s. For the setting of the modified
PCC Voltage/ Frequency 10 kV/ 50 Hz
SFCLs inductance or resistance, a brief explanation is given.
Technically, the value of the inductance or resistance may have Modified flux-coupling-type SFCL
an acceptable range regardless of that the SFCL is used in any Primary inductance 100 mH
voltage network. From [32], the value range of the limiting Coupling coefficient/ Coil ratio 0.99 / 0.5
impedance of the SFCL for the distribution network can be Superconducting coil RSC 10
30~60 to achieve the FRT operation. As the improvement of
the resistance may directly affect the refrigeration technique
A. Study of the Micro-Grid under the Grid-Connected Mode
and the SFCLs application costs, the selection in Table I is
used [33]. Meanwhile, it is not recommended to excessively For that the micro-grid is under the grid-connected mode,
increase the SFCL parameters, and there will be a compromise Figs. 5-6 show its behaviors when the three-phase ground fault
design to fully obtain the performance advantages [34]. happens at t =1 s, and the cases with and without the SFCL are
As shown in Fig. 4, it indicates different FRT curves of a considered. The peak of the fault current in the transmission

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Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 5

50 200
Line current (A) (a) (a)

Line current (A)


100

0 0

-100

-50 -200
Phase-A
Phase-A
Fault occurrence Phase-B
Mode transition Phase-B
Phase-C
Phase-C 200
(b)
(b)
DG Voltage (kV)

10

Line current (A)


100
5
0
0
-5 -100

-10 -200
1.9 1.95 2 2.05 2.1 2.15 2.2
0.9 0.95 1.0 1.05 1.1 1.15 1.2 1.25 1.3 Time (s)
Time (s)
Fig. 8. Operational characteristics of the micro-grid under the transition from Fig. 9. Three-phase fault currents flowing in the transmission line of the
grid-connected mode to islanded mode. (a) Line current and (b) DG voltage. micro-grid under the islanded mode. (a) Without SFCL and (b) with the SFCL.

line can rise to 2.8 kA, and the vast majority of the fault current 10 (a)

DG voltage (kV)
is from the main network. In the case of without SFCL, the DG 5
voltage will inevitably drop to 11.9% of the normal value, and 0
the wind power as well as PV generation will be enforced to trip -5
off from the micro-grid. If the SFCL is used, although it cannot -10
suppress the fault current from the main network, the DG Phase-A
voltage will be improved to 43.8% of the normal value. Note Fault occurrence Phase-B
that, the improvement of the voltage profile is not the only Phase-C
(b)
factor that ensures that FRT is satisfied, and the duration of the 10
DG voltage (kV)

voltage sag should be considered. According to the suggested 5


grid code, the DG units can be continuously and soundly 0
connected to the grid for the duration of 0.39 s. In regard to the -5
overcurrent protection, the primary relay (R4) can operate
-10
within 0.12 s, and in case of its failure to trip, the back-up relay
1.9 1.95 2 2.05 2.1 2.15 2.2
(R1) is able to operate within 0.35 s. Thus, the response speed Time (s)
of the overcurrent protection can satisfy the FRT operation, and Fig. 10. Three-phase voltages over the IIDGs of the micro-grid under the
when the fault is isolated, the voltage will recover to normal. islanded mode. (a) Without SFCL and (b) with the SFCL.
For that the SFCL is installed at the integration point of DG1 protection may fail to operate, and that is because the
and DG2, its main contributions are to improve the DG voltage introduction of the current-limiting impedance ZSFCL makes the
and limit the fault currents contributed by DG1 and DG2. Since measured impedance be outside the active zone of the distance
the two DG units types and capacities determine that their fault relay (Zone I). Due to that the fault may be not removed by the
contributions will be far less than the main networks fault distance relay in a short time, the DG units will be still tripped
contributions, using the SFCL has little influence on limiting off once the fault duration is equal or greater than 0.39 s. Even
the total fault currents flowing through the transmission line, if the distance relay protection Zone II may operate effectively,
and this conclusion can be confirmed by the simulation results. its response time will be more than 0.5 s, and obviously this
As a result, the presence of the SFCL may not affect the time scale cannot meet the FRT requirements.
operation time of the directional overcurrent relays. One possible solution is to take away the current-limiting
For that the distance relay protection is to replace the impedance from the measured impedance of the distance relay
proposed protection scheme, Fig. 7 shows the fault current [42], so as to improve the protection reliability. On the one
characteristics of the micro-grid without and with the SFCL. In hand, the complex of the protection may be enhanced. On the
this case, the setting impedance of the distance relay R4 is other hand, if the fault resistances value exceeds 0.75 , some
Z Set-I =0.85 2 (0.27) 2 (0.347) 2 =0.75 (Zone I), and the additional protective measures should be yet taken into account
protection zone is expected to cover 85% of the line length. to eliminate this influence.
When the SFCL is not applied, the distance relay protection has B. Study of the Micro-Grid under the Mode Switching
no effect on the deep voltage sag until the fault is removed after Fig. 8 shows the characteristics of the micro-grid under the
45 ms, where the computation time of the protection algorithm transition from grid-connected mode to islanded mode, and the
and the action time of the breaker are considered. Thus, it is not mode switching happens at t =1 s. Under the grid-connected
avoided that the DG units will be enforcedly separated from the mode, the DGs overall active power is controlled as 200 kW,
micro-grid. When the SFCL is used, the distance relay and the power shortage of 100 kW will be supported by the

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Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 6

main network. After the micro-grid switches to the islanded Herein the three-phase fault is pointedly investigated since this
mode, the power balance will be undertaken by the DG3. As the symmetrical fault is the most serious case, and also the papers
mode switching is operated by artificially tripping off the static length limitation is another reason. According to the previous
switch, the planed isolation of the micro-grid is obtained, and and current studies from our research group [43], [44], it can be
the SFCL will not affect this dynamic process. From Fig. 8, the concluded that if the SFCL can play an effective role in
micro-grid can smoothly achieve the mode switching. enhancing the FRT capability under the three-phase fault, the
SFCL can still play a role under the unsymmetrical fault
C. Study of the Micro-Grid under the Islanded Mode
conditions such as single-line-to-ground (SLG),
After the islanded micro-grid is formed, the fault occurs at t double-line-to-ground (DLG) and line-to-line (LL) faults.
=2 s, and the fault resistance is 0.5 . The simulations with and To deal with the unsymmetrical fault more efficiently (the
without the SFCL are shown in Figs. 9-10. The three-phase current/voltage unbalance among the three phases may be
fault currents in the short-circuited line does not rise to a kA relatively obvious), the amplitude and phase angle of the
level again, and its peak value is about 135 A without the SFCL current-limiting impedance being connected in series with each
(A-phase). For this amplitude, the overcurrent protections of the faulted phases could be optimized. For that the DG unit is
response time may be too long to meet the demands. However, a doubly fed induction generator (DFIG) for wind power
the current differential protection is able to deal with this fault generation, the unsymmetrical fault will make some additional
case. At almost 60 ms after the short-circuit, the faulted line can AC and DC components be induced in the DFIGs rotor current,
be removed. When the modified flux-coupling-type SFCL is and the SFCLs current-limiting effects should be considered.
used, the DG voltage can be improved to 45.7% of the normal For that the DG is a grid-connected photovoltaic generation
value. As the current differential protection can operate within unit, the operation of FRT can be acquired with the SFCL, but
60 ms, its response speed can quite well meet the FRT the reduction in the imbalance among the three-phase
operation of the DG units. voltages/currents can be still enhanced further. To strengthen
In addition, from the simulation results, the A-phase fault the DGs robustness against the unsymmetrical fault, the
current will be limited from 135 A to 118 A with the presence control of the positive, negative and zero sequence components
of the SFCL, and the expected reduction of the fault current is of the reactive current may be appreciatively introduced.
just 17 A. It is because of that the scale of the fault contributions
from DG1 and DG2 will be relatively smaller than that from B. Impacts of Fault Resistance on the Protection Scheme
DG3, and using the SFCL can only slightly suppress the total As the micro-grid is commonly connected to the power
fault currents flowing through the transmission line. The distribution network rather than transmission network, the
current differential protection is not sensitive to bidirectional value range of fault resistance is not wide in principle, and the
power flow and reduction of fault current, and considering that range in lots of studies is set as 0~2 . If an excessively higher
the current reduction caused by the SFCL is relatively little, it fault resistance has to be considered, its value can be even set as
can be approximately concluded that the presence of the SFCL 200 [45]. In regard to this range, it will affect the fault current
will not affect the operation of the differential relay. since the equivalent impedance of the distribution network is
For that the micro-grid should switch to the islanded mode, about 3 . When a lower fault resistance is adopted, the higher
the use of the distance relay protection for handling the fault fault contribution can be ensured and the overcurrent protection
and FRT issues may meet the similar challenges existed in the can still operate in time.
grid-connected mode, and it is critical to eliminate the influence Once a moderately or excessively higher fault resistance is
of the SFCL on the measured impedance of the distance relay. used, the overcurrent protections response will become slow or
As the SFCL is able to improve the FRT operation of the IIDGs even fail to activate. Meanwhile, as the improvement of the DG
and does not affect the proposed protection scheme, the voltage, its allowable FRT duration will also become long. If
combined use of them for the micro-grid can be regarded as a the time coordination meets the grid code, the FRT operation
more preferable choice than the conventional distance will be successfully obtained, but not vice versa. Thus, to clear
protection with the SFCL. the fault fast and maintain the adequate time margin for the
FRT operation, an additional protection based on fault
IV. TECHNICAL DISCUSSION components or real-time discrete wavelet transform may be
In light of fault type and fault resistance, this section appreciatively added [46], [47].
preliminarily conducts their possible effects on the FRT Concerning that the differential protection is applied for the
operation and the proposed protection scheme. Besides, islanded status, the improvement of fault resistance will firstly
regarding the application value of the SFCL integrated with the reduce the fault current provided by the synchronous generator,
proposed protection, a brief technical discussion is carried out and for its impacts on IIDGs fault currents, the DFIG is
further, and some helpful conclusions can be obtained. adopted for brief analysis. Assuming that the DFIGs terminal
voltage will drop from Vs1 to Vs2 under the fault. Vs2 is closely
A. Influence of Fault Type on the FRT Operation related to fault resistance, and the terminal voltage can be
From the results, the SFCLs positive effects are observed, expressed as [48]:
and the fault is cleared within the allowable time. In general, Vs1e js t t<t0
regarding the improvement of the FRT operation, symmetrical Vs j t
(8)
fault and unsymmetrical fault should be taken into account. Vs 2 e s t t0

1051-8223 (c) 2016 IEEE. Personal use is permitted, but republication/redistribution requires IEEE permission. See http://www.ieee.org/publications_standards/publications/rights/index.html for more information.
This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
ASEMD15-5490 7

where s is the synchronous rotating angular frequency. Based capabilities, and also investigates the directional overcurrent
on constant-linkage theorem and neglecting the stator protection and differential protection for responding to the
resistance, the AC fault current across the DFIGs stator micro-grids grid-connected and islanded statuses. The
winding can be calculated as [49]: following conclusions can be obtained:
(V V )e js t0 Lss t Vs 2 js t Lm ir
R 1) The modified SFCL can make the IIDGs meet the FRT
is s1 s 2 e + e (9) requirements, and will not affect the relay protection
js Ls js Ls Ls
coordination.
where i, R, L indicate the current, resistance and inductance, 2) As the demonstrated short-circuit fault is cleared within
respectively. Subscripts s, r, m denote the stator, rotor and the allowable time, the proposed protection schemes rapidity
mutual quantities, respectively. From (9), the improvement of and reliability can be proved. From the comparison of the
fault resistance can help to decrease the DFIGs output current. conventional distance relay protection and the proposed
Owing to that the total fault currents in the transmission line protection scheme, the latter has a better applicability than the
can be reduced, the differential protections sensitivity may be former to match the SFCL.
potentially affected. But only if this line fault current is greater 3) The impacts of fault type and fault resistance on the FRT
than the differential current threshold, which is determined by operation and the proposed protection scheme are preliminarily
the unbalanced current with a relatively lower value, the explored, and the application value of the SFCL integrated with
differential current protections reliability and rapidity can be the proposed protection is clarified further. The illustrated
still guaranteed. results can offer guidance for the future researches.
C. Application of the SFCL with the Proposed Protection In the near future, the optimal parameter design of the
modified flux-coupling-type SFCL with the proposed
One expected objective of this paper is to explore the
protection scheme will be studied, and its practical application
superconducting power applications and distributed renewable
in a small-scale micro-grid will be tested. The research results
energy sources, and the authors investigate a SFCL to deal with
will be reported in later articles.
the DGs FRT and protection coordination issues of a typical
micro-grid. From the existing literature, using a SFCL has been
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This article has been accepted for publication in a future issue of this journal, but has not been fully edited. Content may change prior to final publication. Citation information: DOI 10.1109/TASC.2016.2599898, IEEE
Transactions on Applied Superconductivity
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