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Symmetrical and unsymmetrical faults analysis: Using Nigeria 330-KV grid as

case study

Conference Paper · November 2017

DOI: 10.1109/NIGERCON.2017.8281953


0 193

3 authors:

Vincent Ogar Daniel Abara

Cross River University of Technology Cross River University of Technology


Eko Akpama
Cross River University of Technology


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Symmetrical and Unsymmetrical Faults Analysis: using
Nigeria 330-KV grid as case study
Ogar, V.N.,
Abara, D.N.,
Akpama, E. J.
Department of Electrical/Electronic Engineering
Cross River University of Technology, CRUTECH.
Calabar, Nigeria.

Abstract—When a short-circuit occurs in a power system, the paper) for each type of fault and hence determine the ratings
magnitude of the fault currents, which is very high compared to of the protective relays and circuit breakers to be used in the
the steady state current that flows in the power system, is power system. Such analysis enables the fault MVA due to a
determined by the reactance of the power system equipment symmetrical 3-phase fault at a point of interest to be
(and the reactance of the ground if ground is involved). It is determined. Also, the current at the point of fault and how it is
essential that symmetrical and unsymmetrical analysis of the distributed [1]. This paper presents an analytic method for the
power system network be undertaken to determine the solution of each fault. For symmetrical faults, only one phase
magnitude of these fault currents and fault MVA (Megavolt- is analyzed since the system is balanced that is, the
Ampere) so as to select adequate ratings of the power system characteristics of the system are the same across all three
protective devices – such as circuit breakers, relays and fuses.
phases. The result obtained will be the same for the other two
Otherwise, these protective devices will not operate properly in
the event of faults thereby causing considerable damage to life phases, hence only one phase needs to be analyzed [2]. The
and equipment. In this paper, the Nigeria 330KV network, 32 solution of symmetrical fault analysis consists of: (1) deriving
bus system is considered using relevant data which was obtained a single line diagram representing one phase of the network,
from the Nigerian National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) in- (2) choice of a common base KVA by which all impedance
house Grid Study Team Report, and the Transmission Company and reactance are converted to per unit values, (3) deriving a
of Nigeria (TCN). Power System toolbox in MATLAB was used single line reactance diagram from the single line diagram and
to carry out the simulation analysis. Fault impedance was set to (4) finding the Thevenin resistance as seen from the fault
j*0.1, and the various kinds of faults were simulated at bus 32 point. From this point, the fault current and fault KVA in per
(Calabar) and bus 6 (Ayede). Base MVA of 100 MVA and Base unit are determined and then converted to their actual values.
KV of 330 KV were used. The results obtained show that The current and voltage distribution throughout the system can
symmetrical three phase fault is the most severe kind at the be worked out by retracing the steps of the calculation [3].
transmission lines, while for faults occurring very close to the Also, the short circuit can be divided into three periods: (1)
generating station or synchronous generator, single line to initial sub-transient period, lasting for the first few cycles,
ground fault is the most severe. during which the decrement is very rapid, the magnitude of
the short-circuit current is very high and this is the period
Index Terms--Power distribution faults, Power distribution lines, where the most damage is caused, (2) the middle transient
Power grids, power system faults, safety devices, protection.
period covering a relatively longer time, during which the
decrement is moderate and (3) the steady state period [3].
Analyses of unsymmetrical faults may be carried out using the
A 3-phase AC power system operating under normal method of symmetrical coordinates. By this method, an
condition has magnitude of both current and voltage equally arbitrary unbalanced 3-phase voltages (or currents) are
distributed across each phase. However, fault may occur to transformed into three sets of balanced 3-phase components.
disrupt this condition. This fault may be symmetrical These components are called symmetrical components. ‘Such
(balanced) or unsymmetrical (unbalanced).A symmetrical three balanced systems constitute three sequence networks
fault is that which involves all the phases while an which are solved separately on a single phase basis. Once the
unsymmetrical fault involves only one or two phases. problem is solved in terms of symmetrical components, it can
Symmetrical and unsymmetrical faults analysis is carried out be transferred back to the actual circuit condition by
to determine the value of the fault currents and fault Kilovolt superposition or phasor addition of these quantities (currents
Ampere (KVA) or Megavolt Ampere (MVA) (and also to or voltages) easily’ [3]. The short circuit currents in an AC
determine relay settings but this is outside the scope of this system are determined mainly by the reactance of the

978-1-5090-6422-9/17/$31.00 ©2017 IEEE

alternators, transformers and lines up to the point of the fault C. Unsymmetrical Faults Analysis
in the case of phase-to-phase faults. When the fault is between Unsymmetrical faults are that which do not involve the
phase and earth, the resistance of the earth path plays an three phases. Types of unsymmetrical faults are:
important role in limiting the currents.
(1) Single line-to-ground (L-G) fault
A. Symmetrical Three-Phase Fault Analysis (3) Double line-to-ground (L-L-G) fault
A symmetrical three-phase fault condition is where either: The method of symmetrical components is used to solve any
(1) All three-phases of the system are short-circuited to number of poly-phase systems. Dr. D. L. Fortescue proposed
each other or, in 1918 [5] that any unbalanced system of currents, voltages,
(2) All three phases of the system are earthed. or other sinusoidal quantities can be resolved into their
balanced system of phasors which are called symmetrical
The faults described in (1) and (2) are balanced, hence only components of the original unbalanced system. Once the
positive sequence network is needed to analyze these faults. problem is solved in terms of symmetrical components, it can
The behavior of the synchronous generator and transmission be transferred back to the actual circuit condition by super-
line of the power system at the time of symmetrical short- position or phasor addition of these quantities (currents or
circuit can be studied by modeling these power system voltages) easily.
components into a Resistance-Inductance (R-L) series circuit. D. Symmetrical Components
Three vectors (voltages and currents), regardless of how
B. Switching Operation in R-L Series Circuit unbalanced they are, can be replaced by three sets of balanced
At the instant when the short circuit occurs, momentary vectors. These balanced vectors are the positive-sequence,
maximum value current flows in the network. This initial negative-sequence and zero-sequence system of vectors.
maximum value of current at the time of short circuit can be
determined by studying the transients in an R-L series circuit
which is the most fundamental type of AC circuit [3].
B A1

(a) C1 (b)
A2 A0 B0 C0
Figure 1. Example of a figure caption

Considering an R-L series circuit shown in Fig. 1. It is B2 (c) (d)
connected at time t = 0, to a source of alternating voltage =
sin( + ) where α is the phase displacement between
the voltage and the reference wave which passes through Figure 2. Symmetrical Faults
zero at the time t = 0, is the angular speed. The relationship
between applied voltage and current is given by, Fig. 2 can be further described as follows: (a) unbalanced
vecetors (b) positive phase sequence components (c) negative
+ = sin( + ) (1)
phase sequence components and (d) zero phase sequence
where is the current, is the resistance and is the components. the positive sequence component phasors are of
inductance. The complete solution of (1) will correspond to equal magnitude, spaced 120 degrees apart and move in the
the steady state conditions and the initial condition of the same direction sequence as the phasors of the unbalanced
system and is given by: system, and my be represented in complex form as

= sin( + − )+ sin( + ) / /
(2) ; = = (3)
where is the phase angle. A 500MVA, 30KV, 60Hz The complex number in the above operation is the operator of
synchronous generator operating at no load with a constant the three-phase system and is denoted by the letter ‘ ’.
excitation voltage of 400V was considered. The variation of
Multiplication of a phase by ‘ ’ turns it through 120 degrees
short circuit current with time was obtained by simulating the
in counter clockwise direction. The negative sequence
symmetrical short circuit fault at the generator terminals, using
a program by Prof. H. Saaddat [4] in Matlab. The results are components phasors are like the positive sequence phasors
given in the Results section.
only that they have a sequence of A-C-B. They are IV. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
represented in complex form as, Table 1 shows the bus names and their respective bus
/ /
numbers, table 2 shows the positive sequence line Impedance
; = = (4) data, and table 3 shows the negative sequence line impedance
The zero phase sequence is the single phase vector and
represent the residual currents or voltage present under fault TABLE 1. BUS NAMES AND RESPECTIVE N UMBERS
conditions on a 3-phase system with a fourth wire or earth
return present. They are expressed in complex form as,

= = (5) Bus Number Bus Name

1 Benin-Kebbi
Furthermore, the phasors of an unbalanced system can be
represented in terms of their symmetrical components as, 2 Kainji
3 Jebba Ts
= + + (6) 4 Jebba Gs
5 Oshogbo
= + + (7)
6 Ayede
= + + (8) 7 Ikeja West
8 Akangba
A phase relationship exists between the components of the 9 Egbin Gs
three sequences, as a result, all the phasors of the symmetrical
10 Aja
components can be re-written in terms of,
11 Egbin 132kv
= (9) 12 AES Gs
13 Shiroro Gs

= (10) 14 Kaduna/Mando
15 Katampe
16 Kumbotso/Kano
= (11)
17 Jos

Equations (9) to (11) above can be rearranged and written in 18 Benin

matrix form as, 19 Ajaokuta
1 1 1 20 Sapele Gs
= 1 (12)
21 Aladja
22 Delta 3Gs
1 1 1 23 Delta 2Gs
= 1 (13) 24 Okapi Gs
1 25 Onitsha
26 New Haven
An unbalanced 3-phase system can be resolved into its
27 Aloji
symmetrical components by the use of the equations above.
28 Afam 3
30 Gombe
The 32 bus Nigeria power 330-kv transmission grid was 31 Ikot Ekpene
analyzed. The transmission grid consist of 10 operational
32 Calabar
generating plants with total installed capacity of about
6000MW [6]. But the total power supplied to the grid hovers
between 3000 to 4000MW. For this analysis, the Base
MVA=100 MVA; and Base Voltage=330-kV.The data used The Matlab simulations performed yielded the results
and results are given in tables 1 to 3 shown in the next presented in the following figures. The waveforms in Fig. 3,
section. Fig. 4 and Fig. 5 show the variation in magnitude of the fault
current with time in phases A, B and C respectively. In
addition, Fig. 6 shows the field current of the generator.
Bus No. Bus No. R(pu) X(pu)
1 2 0.28 0.84
2 3 0.073 0.22
4 3 0.007 0.02
5 3 0.142 0.426
Immediately after the short circuit, the magnitude of the 5 6 0.104 0.312
7 6 0.124 0.372
current is very high and is limited by the sub-transient 7 8 0.016 0.049
reactance only for the first few cycles (from t=0 to t=0.1). 7 9 0.057 0.154
Later on it is controlled by the transient reactance between 9 10 0.013 0.035
t=0.1 to 0.5s. Finally the short circuit current settles down to 9 11 0.006 0.135
11 12 0.062 0.12
the steady-state short-circuit value limited by the synchronous 14 13 0.087 0.26
reactance of the generator [3]. 13 15 0.132 0.36
14 16 0.208 0.624
13 3 0.221 0.662
18 5 0.227 0.68
Bus No. Bus no. R(pu) X(pu) 7 18 0.256 0.7
1 2 0.09 1.178 18 19 0.117 0.531
2 3 0.03 0.308 18 20 0.046 0.125
4 3 0 0.033 20 21 0.057 0.171
5 3 0.05 0.597 18 22 0.097 0.29
5 6 0.04 0.437 18 25 0.03 0.244
7 6 0.042 0.521 22 23 0.061 0.562
7 8 0.006 0.068 24 25 0.073 0.2
7 9 0.017 0.257 26 25 0.087 0.26
9 10 0.004 0.058 27 25 0.125 0.374
9 11 0.002 0.045 27 28 0.023 0.062
11 12 0.021 0.04 28 29 0.043 0.098
14 13 0.029 0.364 30 27 0.035 0.095
13 15 0.04 0.598 30 31 0.066 0.18
14 16 0.07 0.874 There is asymmetry between the short circuit waves of
14 17 0.06 0.748
13 3 0.074 0.927
phases A and B. Generally, the extent to which the
18 5 0.076 0.954 asymmetry occurs depends on the value of the phase voltage
7 18 0.078 1.162 when the short circuit occurs. The asymmetry between phases
18 19 0.056 0.745 A and B shows that at the instant of the short circuit, the
18 20 0.014 0.208 voltage at these phases were near its zero value. If the
20 21 0.019 0.239
18 22 0.033 0.407
voltages were close to its maximum value, there would have
18 25 0.01 0.122 been a lesser degree of asymmetry [3].
22 23 0.021 0.221 x 10
5 Three-phase short circuit ia, delta = 0
24 25 0.022 0.332
26 25 0.029 0.365
27 25 0.042 0.052 1

27 28 0.007 0.104
28 29 0.023 0.041 0.5
30 27 0.011 0.158
30 31 0.02 0.229
ia, A



0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8
t, sec

Figure 3. Three-phase Short-circuit at phase A.

The wave form of phase C shows that at the instant of the

short circuit, its phase voltage was maximum. The short
circuitcan be divided into three periods - initial sub-transient
period, lasting for the first few cycles, during which the
decrement is very rapid, the magnitude of the short-circuit
current is very high and the most damage is caused in this
period; the middle transient period covering a relatively
longer time, during which the decrement is moderate; and
finally the steady state period.
x 10 Three-phase short circuit ic, delta = 0


i c, A


Total Fault current (per unit)
Fault Type
Bus No. 32 Bus No. 6
Symmetrical -2.5
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8
Three phase 1.9472 1.8513 t, sec

fault Figure 5. Three-phase Short-circuit at phase C

2.1084 1.9865
ground fault
Three-phase short circuit iF, delta = 0
Line-to-line 7000
1.8680 1.7664
Double line-
1.8684 0.0045 6000
to-ground fault
5 Three-phase short circuit ib, delta = 0
x 10
2.5 5000
iF, A

2 4000

1.5 3000
ib, A

1 2000

0.5 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8
t, sec

0 Figure 6. Field Current in alternator winding

The results so far show that the symmetrical three phase
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4
t, sec
0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 fault is the most severe type of fault for transmission lines.
But when the fault is very close to the terminals of the
Figure 4. Three-phase Short-circuit at phase B
generator (such as that at bus 32), single line-to-ground fault
TABLE 3. NEGATIVE SEQUENCE L INE IMPEDANCE is the most severe. The simulation results for bus 6 and bus
32 are summarized in table 4 below:
Again, the current can be split-up into; a fundamental
frequency component, a Direct-current (DC) component and
a double frequency component. The fundamental
frequencycomponent is symmetrical with respect to the time
axis. Its superposition on the dc component will give an
unsymmetrical wave form. The dc component represents the
displacement of the ac wave-form from the zero axis [4]. The short circuit occurs very close to the terminals of the
generator, hence the magnitude of line-to-ground fault current
is greater than that of symmetrical three-phase fault as
observed from table 4. Also, the actual fault currents and fault
MVA can be calculated by substituting relevant values into
the following formula:

Base current, = (14)

√ ×

Actual fault current = × (15)

Fault MVA= √3 × × base Voltage × 10 (16)

where, is the short circuit current in per unit. The Furthermore, to forestall damage to power system
greatest magnitude of fault current flows during the equipment, avoid wastage and reduce level of insensitivity of
occurrence of three phase short circuit as shown by the protective devices all of which can be caused by the use of
following calculations. Hence, to select appropriate size of protective devices with ratings that are excessively high,
circuit breaker, the three phase fault current should be used as symmetrical and unsymmetrical fault analysis should be
reference. The Base MVA = 100 MVA and the Base voltage carried out to ascertain the correct sizes of protective devices
= 330kV. Thus, the Base current, to be used.
= = 175 (17)
√ ×
[1] B. B. Lame, “The Story of the Induction motor,”Journal of the
Consequently, the actual fault current and fault MVA for American Institute of Electrical Engineers (JAIEE), vol. 40, pp. 693-
716, 1920.
each type of fault by use of (15) and (16) is summarized in [2] G. Ferraris, “Rotazioni elettrodynamiche prodotte per mezzo di correnti
table 5 given below. alternate,” II Nuovo Cimento, vol. 23, pp. 246-263, 1888.
[3] J. B. Gupta, A course in Power Systems, pt. I. New Delhi: S. K. Kataria
and Sons, 2013, pp. 1-99.
[4] H. Saddat, Power System Analysis. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2006, pp.
Actual Fault Current Fault MVA
Fault Type
(Amperes) (KVA)
The rating of the circuit breaker should not be less than 369A Symmetrical
Three phase 340 1113
for current and 1205KVA for power. Hence, single line-to- fault
ground fault should be used as reference since the fault Line-to-
occurred close to the generating plant. 369 1205
ground fault
[5] C. I. Fortescue, “Method of symmetrical coordinates applied to the
V. CONCLUSION solution of polyphase Networks,” American Institute of Electrical
Engineers (AIEE) Transactions, vol. 37, part II, pp. 1027-1140, 1980.
Symmetrical current to be interrupted is computed by [6] J. L. Blackburn, Symmetrical components for Power Systems
using sub-transient reactance for synchronous generators. Engineering, New York: Marcel Dekker, 1993, pp. 193-204.
Momentary current (rms) is then calculated by multiplying [7] E. Clarke, Circuit Analysis for A-C Power systems, Hoboken, NJ: John
the symmetrical momentary current by a factor of 1.6 to Wiley and Sons, 1943, pp. 391-400.
[8] J. J. Grainger and W. D. Stevenson Jr. Power System Analysis, New
account for the presence of DC offset current. York: McGraw Hill, 1994, pp. 390.
In summary, very critical observations are made: [9] R. E. Fehr, Industrial Power Distribution, Upper Saddle River, NJ:
 for faults along the transmission line far from the Prentice Hall, 2002, pp. 71-72.
generating stations, the magnitude of the [10] J. R. Carson, “Wave propagation in overhead wires with ground
return,” Bell System Technical Journal, vol. 5, pp. 539-554, 1926.
symmetrical short circuit current is higher than those [11] A. Abdulkareem, C. A. Awosope, A. U. Adoghe and M. O. Okelola,
for other kinds of faults while, “Reliability analysis of Circuit Breaker in Nigerian 330-kV
 for those short circuits very close to the generating Transmission Network,” B. Eng. Thesis, Covenant University, Ota,
Nigeria, 2014.
plants, single line-to-ground faults generate the [12] U. C. Ogbuefi and T. C Madueme, “A Power flow analysis of the
highest magnitude of fault current and fault MVA. Nigerian 330-KV Electric Power System,” M. Eng. Thesis, University
of Nigeria, Nsukka, 2015.
VI. RECOMMENDATIONS [13] NIPP in-house Grid study team. “Integration and evaluation study for
For selection of circuit breakers in power transmission National Integrated Power Projects,” Final report of in-house study,
stations, values obtained from symmetrical faults analysis
should be used as reference, while for generating stations,
values for single line-to-ground faults analysis should be used
as reference. With respect to the Nigerian 330-kV grid, the
current rating of the circuit breakers should not be less than
1.6 times 368A for bus 32, and power rating not less than
1.6times 1205KVAthat is, 588.8A and 1928KVA for current
and voltage ratings respectively.
Figure 7. Nigeria 32 bus 330-KV Transmission Grid system

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