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Title: Synthetic testing of high voltage direct current circuit breakers
Author: Cwikowski, Oliver
ISNI:       0000 0004 6496 0529
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2016
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The UK is facing two major challenges in the development of its electricity network. First, two thirds of the existing power stations are expected to close by 2030. Second, is the requirement to reduce its CO2 emissions by 80% by 2050. Both of these challenges are significant in their own right. The fact that they are occurring at the same time, generates a significant amount of threats to the existing power system, but also provides many new opportunities. In order to meet both these challenges, significant amounts of offshore wind generation has been installed in the UK. For the wind generation with the longest connections to land, Voltage Source Converter (VSC) based High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) transmission has to be used. Due to the high power rating of the offshore wind farms, compared to the limited transmission capacity of the links, a large number of point-to-point connections are required. This has lead to the concept of HVDC grids being proposed, in order to reduce the amount of installed assets required. HVDC grids are a new transmission environment and the fundamental question of how they will protect themselves must be answered. Several new technologies are under consideration to provide this protection, one of which is the HVDC circuit breaker. As HVDC circuit breakers are a new technology, they must be tested in a laboratory environment to prove their operation and improve their Technology Readiness Level (TRL). This thesis is concerned with how such HVDC circuit breakers are operated, rated, and tested in a laboratory environment. A review of the existing circuit breaker technologies is given, along with descriptions of several novel circuit breakers developed in this thesis. A standardized method of rating DC circuit breaker and their associated test circuit is developed. Mathematical analysis of several circuit breakers is derived from first principles and low power prototypes are developed to validate these design concepts. A high power test circuit is then constructed and a semiconductor circuit breaker is tested. The key learning outcomes from this testing are provided.
Supervisor: Barnes, Mike Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HVDC Grid ; Fault ; HVDC Circuit Breakers ; Voltage Source Converters ; Control VSC