Testing of IEC 61850 Compliant Smart Grid Devices

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  • 1miqbal.ridwan@tnbr.com.my

    Testing of IEC 61850 Compliant Smart Grid Devices: A Malaysian Experience

    1M.I. RIDWAN,

    1N.S. MISWAN,

    1M.N. NORAN,

    1M.S.M. SHOKRI,

    2H.N. AWANG,

    2A. MUSA

    1TNB RESEARCH SDN BHD

    2TENAGA NASIONAL BERHAD

    MALAYSIA

    AORC Technical meeting 2014C4-1093

    http : //www.cigre.org

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    SUMMARY

    One of the important aspects to ensure the success of a Smart Grid implementation is the ability of

    the devices and systems in a Smart Grid domain to be able to seamlessly communicate and exchange

    information with each other. This aspect, which is also referred as interoperability, is crucial for the

    execution of functions that are defined in a Smart Grid domain, regardless whether it is a distributed or

    centralized function. To ensure interoperability is implemented successfully in a Smart Grid domain, it

    is imperative for power utilities to acquire know-now on the relevant open standard based Smart Grid

    technologies that can ensure interoperability without fail. Smart Grid solutions with proprietary

    technology may pose significant long term risks to utilities, such as expensive replacement of devices

    and system extension due to over dependency to single vendor , low flexibility to define new

    requirements and susceptible to technology obsolescence from the single vendor.

    Interoperability in a Smart Grid domain is crucial to ensure the seamless information exchange

    between devices and systems in the domain to execute their intended functions. Standardization bodies

    such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), International Electrotechnical

    Committee (IEC) and National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have published

    standards, guideline and roadmaps suggesting on the technologies that can enable seamless

    interoperability between devices and systems in a Smart Grid domain. For communications related to

    power system and electrical substations in Smart Grid domain, IEC 61850 standard has been

    recognized as the open standard that enables interoperability through its standardized data models and

    communication services. These data models and communication services are mapped to the

    mainstream Ethernet technology, which has allowed IEC 61850 to be future proof regardless of the

    advancements of communication technology.

    As the public electric utility company in Malaysia, Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) believes that the

    integration of solutions from different vendors using open standard is the way forward and has the

    promising potential to provide substantial cost savings in the near future. TNB has identified the IEC

    61850 standard as the key enabler standard for this purpose and has included the standard as a part of

    the long term technology implementation plan under the TNB Technology Road Map (TRM). To

    ensure the successful implementation of IEC 61850 standard in a Smart Grid domain, TNB has

    embarked in several initiatives, which are also defined in TNB TRM. The initiatives include the

    development of an IEC 61850 laboratory, new product acceptance process for IEC 61850 compliant

    devices and in-house software applications for IEC 61850 substations. These initiatives are vital for

    TNB not only to pave the path to realize TRM vision, but also to obtain in-depth understanding

    regarding IEC 61850 and to develop in-house expertise on the subject. Although IEC 61850 promises

    interoperability, it is imperative for users to understand the detailed methodologies and know-how

    specified in IEC 61850 to successfully achieve interoperability during the implementation stage. This

    paper will discuss TNBs experience on the interoperability testing of IEC 61850 compliant devices

    and highlights some of the findings which were observed during the execution of the initiatives above.

    KEYWORDS

    IEC 61850, Intelligent Electronic Devices (IEDs), Interoperability, Smart Grid, Substation Configuration Language (SCL), Substation Information Management System (SIMS), Substation

    Protection, Automation and Control System (SPACS), System Verification and Simulation (SVS)

    Laboratory

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    1. Introduction

    Interoperability in a Smart Grid domain is crucial to ensure the seamless information exchange

    between devices and systems in the domain to execute their intended functions. Standardization bodies

    such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), International Electrotechnical

    Committee (IEC) and National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have published

    standards, guideline and roadmaps suggesting on the technologies that can enable seamless

    interoperability between devices and systems in a Smart Grid domain [1,2,3]. For communications

    related to power system and electrical substations in Smart Grid domain, IEC 61850 has been

    recognized as the open standard that enables interoperability through its standardized data models and

    communication services [4]. These data models and communication services are mapped to the

    mainstream Ethernet technology, which has allowed IEC 61850 to be future proof regardless of the

    advancements of communication technology [5].

    Realizing the benefits that can be exploited from the implementation of IEC 61850 standard, Tenaga

    Nasional Berhad (TNB), a public electric utility company in Malaysia has recognized IEC 61850 as

    the key enabler standard in the long term technology implementation plan which is called Technology

    Road Map (TRM). TRM defines Smart and Intelligent Electricity Delivery System as TNBs own

    definition of Smart Grid. The vision of TRM is to achieve the Smart and Intelligent Electricity

    Delivery System by the year 2020, which smart substation based on IEC 61850 standard has been

    identified as one of the major contributors for TNB to achieve the vision [6]. The overview of TNB

    TRM is illustrated in Fig. 1 below.

    Fig. 1. TNB Technology Roadmap Destinations and Enabling Technology

    Under TRM, a cluster of technologies have been identified to achieve the vision of Smart and

    Intelligent Electricity Delivery System by the year 2020. The vision is to develop smart substations

    equipped with integrated Substation Protection, Automation and Control System (SPACS), which is

    TNBs term for SAS. Realizing the capabilities and potential benefits of IEC 61850, the standard has

    been identified as the key enabler standard and foundation for the technologies. Fig. 2 highlights the

    cluster of technologies in TRM.

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    Fig. 2. Clusters of Technology under TRM with IEC 61850 Standard as the Enabler

    With IEC 61850, TNB expects to achieve the following goals:

    1. Integration of SPACS with IEDs from different vendors, or multi-vendor solution. This is to reduce the risk of common cause of failure and failure modes of IEDs from the same vendor

    2. Standardized and self descriptive data models which explicitly defines the functions in power system domain. Such feature will simplify the engineering and configuration of SPACS.

    3. Seamless exchange of information between multi-vendor devices using standardized communication services.

    4. Vendor independent engineering and maintenance tools to ease the training and change management process of end users in maintaining SPACS.

    To ensure that the above expectations are met, it is imperative for TNB to have the facility, tools and

    procedure to:

    1. Test IEC 61850 compliant devices and systems to ensure the functions are actually available and within the required performance criteria

    2. Confirm the interoperability of the devices in utilizing IEC 61850 data models and communication services for information exchange

    3. Identify and rectify potential issues before the devices are implemented in TNB system 4. Understand the specific implementation of IEC 61850 by vendors due to the open nature of the

    standard

    Hence, in July 2007, the Engineering Department of TNB Transmission Division has appointed

    TNB Research Sdn Bhd (TNBR), a wholly owned subsidiary of TNB, to carry out a 3 year R&D

    program called Research and Development of Substation Automation System based on IEC 61850

    for Optimal Substation Design in TNB. As part of the research program deliverables, an in-house

    research and testing laboratory which is the System Verification and Simulation (SVS) Laboratory has

    been developed. The laboratory is equipped with IEC 61850 compliant IEDs and system which

    simulates the communication of secondary equipment as per actual substation. The overview of the

    SVS Laboratory is shown in Fig. 3.

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    Fig. 3. SVS Laboratory in TNB Research Sdn Bhd

    The next section will discuss on the overall design, communication architecture and capabilities of

    the SVS Laboratory.

    2. TNB IEC 61850 System Verification and Simulation (SVS) Laboratory

    SVS laboratory is designed to replicate a typical configuration of 132kV Air Insulated Substation

    (AIS). The configuration follows a double bus-bar configuration with two over headline bays, one bus

    coupler bay, two HV transformer bays and two MV transformer bays. Each bay is assigned with 2

    protection IEDs with duplicated functions of Main 1 and Main 2 together with 1 control IED. The

    IEDs are connected to a dedicated Ethernet Switch for each bay using star topology through RJ45