Electrical treeing in cable insulation under different HVDC operational conditions

Mohammad Azizian Fard*, Mohamed Emad Farrag, Scott McMeekin, Alistair Reid

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

Electrical treeing (ET) can irreversibly deteriorate the insulation of polymeric power cables leading to a complete failure. This paper presents the results of an experimental investigation into the effects of unipolar and polarity reversing DC voltages on electrical tree (ET) and partial discharge (PD) behavior within high voltage direct current (HVDC) cross linked polyethylene (XLPE) cable insulation. A double needle configuration was adopted to produce non-uniform electric fields within the insulation samples, potentially leading to electrical trees. The development of trees was monitored through an optical method and the associated partial discharge signals were measured through an electrical detection technique, simultaneously. The analysis of the results shows reasonable relation between the formation of ETs and the type of the applied voltages. The polarity reversing attribute of the test voltages has a pronounced effect on formation and growth of electrical trees. This implicates an interaction between the space charges that accumulate within polymeric materials and the operational polarity reversing electric fields, which causes insulation degradation. Therefore, study of influencing HVDC operational parameters on insulation degradations can contribute to improvements in cable design and advancement in insulation diagnostic strategies applicable in HVDC systems leading to more effective asset management.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2406
JournalEnergies
Volume11
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sep 2018

Keywords

  • degradation
  • HVDC transmission
  • insulation
  • polarity reversal
  • partial discharges
  • polymers
  • power cable insulation
  • space charge
  • electrical trees

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