When your operation is responsible for one or multiple electrical power systems, you need to understand how they perform in your environment. Power system studies are the best way to find the answer. With a team of specialists, you can gain a lot of valuable information about your power systems.
What Are Electrical Power Systems Studies?
Power system studies are specialized processes used to assess the expected performance of an electrical system. Professionals obtain data from these studies using different calculations. Every power system has its own purpose, and the calculation methods will vary for each.
Types of electrical power systems studies include:
- Short circuit study: This study type assesses the ability to withstand or interrupt a system’s current for each component in a system. These studies have to compile every possible operating scenario to assess performance in each. Once conducted, a specialist can determine the equipment that has insufficient ratings based on performance and the percentage of rated short circuit current.
- Load flow study: A load flow study will look at the active and reactive power in a system. It also gauges voltage, current and power factor. These features of an electrical system determine which equipment can handle the load in different operating scenarios and which are overloaded. This study is most commonly used in the commissioning phase for electrical equipment.
- Coordination study: Coordination studies assess system protection devices and how they respond to overcurrent in the system. Much like other studies, this one will rely on various operating scenarios to gauge performance at different times.
- Arc flash hazard analysis: This study is conducted under the worst-case arc flash conditions in all operating scenarios to determine the protection boundary distances and incident energy levels for electrical equipment. Coordination and short circuit studies are usually performed beforehand to determine available energy and clearing times.
The Importance of Power Systems Studies
Electrical power system studies are critical because they keep systems safe and functional. With the data obtained from these studies, professionals can determine if parts need to be replaced, what power demands are acceptable for a system and how to protect people working in the vicinity of a power system. With power systems studies, operations can protect their teams and reduce downtime.