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Remote Monitoring System for Transformer Substations Timo T. Vekara,0HPEHU,(((, Seppo Pettissalo and N. Rajkumar, 0HPEHU,((
energy consumption of end users from automatic metering recorders. However, on-line data on the conditions of distribution transformer substations are currently not often available for remote diagnosis. For example, the information on the loading of distribution transformer substations is not in real time, but is limited and based only on technical checks performed few times a year by visiting maintenance electricians. Not only the conventional technical data, such as current, voltage, temperature etc., but also more advanced information about the status of transformers, such as expected transformer lifetime is needed by the operators to ensure reliable power delivery. Utilities find the implementation of communication between numerous ,QGH[ 7HUPV0RQLWRULQJ 3RZHU GLVWULEXWLRQ FRQWURO monitoring systems too expensive and thus they have been 7UDQVIRUPHUV ignored entirely. However, the development of the infrastructure of wireless communication such as the mobile I. INTRODUCTION phone networks, gives new, cost effective possibilities to monitor distribution transformer substations. HE distribution transformer is a critical item of The Wimo distribution transformer monitoring system equipment in power systems and its correct functioning isessential to the reliable operation of the system. It is (DMTS) described in the paper offers several advantages therefore, necessary to monitor the operating condition over more traditional methods. and performance of distribution transformers in order to II. THE WIMO SYSTEM avoid or reduce disruption due to sudden unexpected failure. It also helps to save running costs by optimizing Wimo system is developed by Wimotec Ltd.  and it maintenance schedules. consists of a PC with proper software at the control centre, Several monitoring systems for power transformers transformer monitoring units (TMU, i.e. the Wimo conhave been developed, such as those described in  and trollers) with a GSM module at the transformer substations , but not for distribution transformers. Generally, the and radio communication (GSM and sometimes also trend of transformer monitoring systems (TMS) is from GPRS) between them, as shown in Fig. 1a. A reliable data acquisition to data interpretation to give clear infor- server is also needed for data backup. mation to the operator. The distribution network will enFigs. 1b and 1c show the Wimo TMU, which has as the tirely be controlled automatically. following main features: voltage, current and temperature The reliability of operation of distribution networks can measurements, other I/O ports, a real-time clock and be increased by using automatic monitoring systems for power storage in super capacitors. The potential free intransformers – not only for power transformers but also puts can be used to detect short circuits, smoke and hufor distribution transformers. Remote monitoring can pro- midity, to monitor transformer cabinet and for a temperavide selective sharing of data among multiple sites in the ture relay. The controller has a programmable hardware, most efficient and cost effective manner. An information described more detailed in . centre of a utility acquires information on power plants The system is capable of communicating in both direcand on HV/MV substations from a supervisory control and tions. The Wimo system not only sends messages (measurdata acquisition (SCADA) system, and information on LV ing data, warnings and alarms) from a distribution transformer substation to an operator via a mobile phone or a server, but also receives the instructions such as parameter T. T. Vekara is with the Department of Electrical Engineering and Production Management, University of Vaasa, Finland (e-mail: settings of the operator via a GSM or GPRS network and [email protected]). Internet, as shown in Fig. 1. Use of the existing communiS. Pettissalo is with Wimotec Ltd, Vaasa, Finland (e-mail: cation network (GSM network for short message service, [email protected]). N. Rajkumar is with the City University London, London, England SMS of GSM network and GPRS for data transfer)
Fig. 1. The Wimo monitoring system for distribution transformers (a), the Wimo controller (TMU) with a GSM module in a transformer substation; schematic diagram (b), and layout (c).
keeps investment and operation costs low. To monitor a transformer substation an operator needs the Web browser such as Microsoft Explorer or Netscape in a PC or in a PDA device or a mobile phone, and central station software (CTS); the main functions of which are alarm management, reading and storing of measurements to database and production of reports, online monitoring, parameter setting, production of a communication log, and system administration in general. The system takes measurements and provides reports to the operator concerning overload conditions, power outages, voltage disturbances, earth faults, current unbalance and increase of reactive power etc. Fig. 2 shows a sample view seen by the operator. The operator sets the alarming limits for parameters such as currents, voltage, temperature, reactive power, imbalance, voltage peaks and drops, and receives the information of alarms, their location, time, event and measured value.
Wimo system is compatible with the other commercial IT systems for power systems, like a remote control and operating system for networks developed by ABB Ltd., a network data system of Tekla Ltd. and a remote metering system of Enermet Ltd., see -, respectively. The benefits of the WIMO system to power utilities can be summarized as follows: 1) effective management of the capacity of the transformer 2) fast fault clearance 3) automatic and reliable recording of outages and events including the time stamps, 4) authentic energy quality information through registration of voltage dips and spikes according to IEC standard 61000-4-30, 5) measurements to provide relevant data for enhancing maintenance and operating functions and predictability in various power network situations, 6) several communication options with the control centre including SMS based protocol for GSM, industrial protocol for control LANs, communication over GPRS, and OPC server for integration with external appli-
successfully be used in monitoring of transformer substations. V. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors gratefully acknowledge the contributions of Mr. Petteri Heinänen of Wimotec Ltd. for his work on this document. VI. REFERENCES 
C. Bengtsson, "Status and Trends in Transformer Monitoring", , vol. 11, no. 3, July 1996, pp. 1379 - 1384. M. F. Barnes, "QualiTROL SENTRY Transformer Monitoring ! "$#% '&' ! ( ) *+ *! ( -, # .( System", /0". 1/# .( (Digest No. 1996/186), 5. Dec. 1996, pp. 2/1 - 2/7. Wimotec Ltd., http://www.wimotec.com. S. Pettissalo, W. E. Kozlowski, H. Lyskawa, T. Kantecki, "WIMO – Remote Monitoring System for Trandformer Substations," 2
  Fig. 2. Sample view of measured phase currents of a load as a function of time for an operator as shown on the PC screen.
cations, and 7) a financially advantageous solution both at purchase and operation.
III. EXPERIENCES IN FINLAND The first Wimo system has been operating in Finland for about two years. The system has shown to function properly and fully compatibly with the GSM and GPRS radio networks of the largest commercial mobile phone operators in Finland, i.e., Radiolinja Ltd., Sonera Ltd, and Dna Finland Ltd., introduced in -. In practice, the benefits of the monitoring system have shown to be useful in giving accurate and real-time information on distribution transformers such as loading and conditions of their rooms. Power quality can now be registered remotely without visiting the transformer substation for transferring physical measurement devices. In general, it is expected that the importance of the advanced features related to power quality will still increase in future. Further development of the Wimo system will be in the production of devices for outdoor use and translation of the central station software which is now only in Finnish, Swedish and English to other languages. Total harmonic distortion (THD) will also be available soon. IV. CONCLUSION The reliability of operation of distribution networks can be increased by using automatic monitoring systems for transformers – not only for power transformers but also for distribution transformers. At present, operators do not have either much measured data or advanced information on transformer substations for maintenance and control. This paper describes an advanced remote monitoring system for distribution transformers which utilizes the existing communication network, has low investment and operation costs and is easy to install and use. Experience in Finland has shown that the commercial infrastructure can
was born in Kokemaki, Finland, in 1959. He received MSc (El Eng), Lic. Tech and Doctor of technology degrees from Tampere University of Technology Finland in 1984, in 1993 and in 2001, respectively. He has worked several years with R&D of hoists and cranes first in Kone Corporation and then in KCI Konecranes. Since 1997 he has worked as an acting professor and has also been the Head of Electrical Engineering at the University of Vaasa, Finland. His interests are power electronics, wind power and improvement of university education using simulations. U QV!V!LWXQ8Y Y J ZZS$[ L received MSc degree in electronics from the University of Oulu, Finland in 1970. He has worked several years with Strömberg Ltd, ABB Ltd., Vaasa Electronics Ltd., Vacon Ltd. and Vamp Ltd. in Vaasa. In 2002 he started Wimotec Ltd. where he currently works as the technical manager. His interests are R&D in electrical engineering and electronics. \AN]AS^R0_!KMST graduated in electrical, electronic and control engineering, and has worked in electricity distribution for several years. He received the MSc (Sys Eng) and PhD (El) degrees from the City University, London. He was with the Singapore Polytechnic for 15 years, where he was a Senior Lecturer and has been the Section Head of the Electrical Power Section. He worked for two years as a Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Vaasa, Finland. He is now with the Energy Systems Group at the City University, London as a Research Fellow and his research interests include Power System Protection, Distributed Generation and Computer applications in Power Systems.