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Test Systems for Reliability and

Adequacy Assessment of Electric

Power Systems

Roy Billinton, Dange Huang

University of Saskatchewan

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The RBTS is a 6 bus system composed of two

generator buses, 5 load buses, 9 transmission
lines and 11 generating units. The total
installed capacity is 240 MW and the system
peak load is 185 MW.

The RBTS was developed for educational and

research purposes.


The IEEE-RTS is a 24 bus system with 10
generator buses, 17 load buses, 33
transmission lines, 5 transformers and 32
generating units. The total installed capacity is
3405 MW and the system peak load is 2850 MW.
The IEEE-RTS was developed by a Task Force
of the Application of Probability Methods
Subcommittee of the IEEE Power System
Engineering Committee. It was developed to
satisfy the need for a standard database to test
and compare results from different power
system reliability evaluation methodologies.%%


The basic RBTS and the IEEE-RTS use a

common load model in which the load at each
hour of the year is expressed as a percentage
of the assigned system peak. The structure
permits the load to be represented by a
chronological hourly load model or by
aggregated annual or period load models.


Hierarchical levels


•  Generation Data

Basic HL-I model


•  The data in this table is extended in [11] to include

derated state models for the 40 MW thermal
generating units.

RBTS-Generation Data
Reference 11 includes the relevant cost data on
each generating unit including fuel costs,
operating costs and capital costs. Two loading
orders are provided. The first loading order is
on a purely economic basis, in which the hydro
units are loaded before the thermal units, due
to their low operating costs. The second
loading order allocates some hydro units as
peaking capacity, which could reflect limited
energy considerations. 

RBTS-Generation Data

Additional generating capacity to meet future

load growth is assumed to consist of 10 MW
gas turbines with the reliability and cost data
shown in [11]. A suggested seven step
approximation to a normal distribution with a
standard deviation of 4% is given to include
load forecast uncertainty. Maximum and
minimum generating unit MVAr capability data
are provided for load flow purposes in
subsequent composite system studies. 

RBTS-Transmission Data

The relevant reliability data for the nine 230 kV

lines in Fig. 1 in terms of the permanent and
transient failure rates and the permanent
outage repair times are given in [11]. The
outage duration of a transient outage is
considered to be less than one minute.
Outages of substation components which are
not switched as a part of a line are not included
in the line data. 

RBTS-Transmission Data
The basic transmission outage data for the system in
Fig. 1 is augmented in [11] by providing the necessary
impedance, susceptance and current rating data to
conduct AC load flow studies. Load bus data is
provided in the form of peak load MW and MVAr values.
Reference 11 suggests that the load at each bus should
be classified in the two categories of firm load and
curtailable load and that in the case of a relevant
system problem, curtailable load should be curtailed
first followed by curtailment of firm load if necessary.

Single line diagram of the RBTS

Extended single line
diagram of the RBTS

RBTS-Distribution Data

Bus 2 distribution systems of the RBTS +'"

RBTS-Distribution Data

Bus 6 distribution systems of the RBTS +("

Complete single line
diagram of the RBTS

The basic objective of the Reliability Test

System Task Force that developed the IEEE-
RTS was “to establish a core system which
can be supplemented by individual authors
with additional or modified parameters needed
in a particular application”. 


This has certainly proved to be the case as the

IEEE-RTS has been used in a wide range of
studies, which in many cases involved
additional or modified parameters. The original
system provides a load model, a generation
system and a transmission network. It does not
include substation configurations, distribution
systems, interconnections with other systems,
protective relay configurations or future
expansion considerations.


The generation facilities include steam capacity in the

form of fossil-oil, fossil-coal and nuclear units,
combustion turbine units and hydro units. Operating
cost data is provided for each unit type, and data on
hydro unit capacity and energy limitations are
specified. The generating unit MVAr capabilities are
provided in [12] for each unit size. Voltage correction
devices with specified capability are provided at bus 14
(synchronous condenser) and bus 6 (reactor).
Individual bus peak load power data are provided and a
98% power factor is assumed. 

The Generating Unit Reliability Data for


The Generating Unit Reliability Data for


As noted in Fig. 2, the connections from bus 1 to 2 and

from bus 6 to 10 are 138 kV cables. Transmission line
forced outage data are provided for each line and cable
in terms of permanent outage rates and repair times
and transient outage rates. The permanent outage rate
includes a fixed component to account for faults on
terminal equipment switched with the line. Data is
presented on bus section and circuit breaker reliability
but the report, by intent, does not include any
substation configurations. 


Reference [12] also indicates that seven line pairs are

on either a common right-of-way or a common tower
structure for all or part of their length, but does not
provide any reliability data. Impedance and rating data
is provided for each line, cable and transformer. The
point is made that the data in this paper is sufficient to
completely define a DC load flow for the test system
but is not completely defined to conduct an AC load
flow as generator bus voltages and transformer tap
information are required. 


•  A modified version of the IEEE-RTS (RTS-79) was

published in 1986 and designated as RTS-86 [16].
This paper removes some of the limitations which
existed in the RTS-79 by including additional data
pertaining to the generating system. In addition,
RTS-86 contains a set of basic generation indices for
the base and extended RTS. The indices were
evaluated without any approximations in the
evaluation process and therefore provide a set of
exact indices against which the results of alternate
and approximate methods can be compared.


The additions to RTS-79 contained in RTS-86

include generating unit derated states, load
forecast uncertainty, unit scheduled
maintenance conditions and the effect of
interconnections. The data used to incorporate
these conditions together with study results
that indicate their effects on the HL-I reliability
indices are presented in [16].


The IEEE-RTS was further extended in 1996 by the

Reliability Test System Task Force of the Application of
Probability Methods Subcommittee to produce RTS-96.
Changes occurring in the electric utility industry
motivated the Task Force to create a multi-area RTS
incorporating additional data [17]. In addition to the
basic RTS-79 configuration, the Task Force created a
Two Area RTS-96 and a Three Area RTS-96 by linking
various RTS-79 single systems. 


A major addition in this revision is the

inclusion of production cost related data for
the generating units. Data on unit start-up heat
input, net plant incremental heat rates, unit
cycling restrictions and unit emission data
were added to facilitate system production cost
calculation and emission analysis. 

The RTS-79 transmission system was enhanced by
including a phase shifter, a two terminal DC
transmission line and five inter-area ties. The
transmission branch data for each area is described in
tabular form. A DC interconnection between Area A and
B is proposed based on a procedure and data
presented in [18].
Figure 8 shows a single line diagram of the One Area
RTS-96 including substations. The relevant circuit
breaker failure data are given in [17]. Figure 8 was
originally published in [19]. 

Single line diagram of the IEEE One Area RTS-96
with substations

The RTS-96 also includes system dynamic data based

on a classical generator model. Typical reactance and
intertia data based on generators of the same type and
size are provided.
The IEEE-RTS published in 1979 has been extended by
the addition of a wide range of enhancements. The
1996 Task Force noted that these enhancements
should be considered as optional additions and no
user should feel compelled to make use of them all. 


The published literature contains numerous

papers in which the IEEE-RTS is used as the
studied system. In many cases, the IEEE-RTS
was modified to meet the study requirements.
The IEEE-RTS is basically a generation weak
and transmission strong system. One of the
more common modifications is to increase the
generating capacity and the system load while
retaining the original transmission system. 


The IEEE-RTS in the form of the RTS-79,

RTS-86 and RTS-96 does not include customer
interruption cost data. Reference [20] contains
customer interruption cost data on seven
customer sectors and the sector load
allocations at each load point in the IEEE-RTS.
These data are then used to create composite
customer damage functions and interrupted
energy assessment rates at each load point. 

This paper presents a general overview of the RBTS
and the IEEE-RTS, and a brief summary of the
evolution of these test systems. The paper does not
attempt to provide a compilation of the test systems
data contained in the references. As noted in the
paper, the IEEE Reliability Test System Task Force was
motivated to expand and enhance the IEEE-RTS in
1996 by the changes that had occurred in the electric
utility industry. Considerable changes have occurred
since 1996, which suggests that both the RBTS and the
IEEE-RTS should be studied and enhanced to include
data that would allow these changes to be incorporated
and applied in basic electric power system reliability