Feb 2013
Electricity Distribution
Superconducting Fault Current Limiter (SFCL)
Live
Feb 2013
Unknown
Electricity North West Limited
Electricity North West Innovation Team
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Innovation Funding Incentive
None
LV & 11kV Networks
£0.00
The development of a non-linear high-temperature superconducting ceramic in series with a circuit breaker for the clamping and clearance of fault energy. When the material is operated at below its critical temperature it loses all electrical resistance, thereby allowing load current to flow with negligible losses. Either the increased current density caused by fault current or the loss of cooling medium (liquid nitrogen) causes the temperature of the superconducting material to rise and it reverts to a normal resistive state.

Being a solid state device, the Superconducting Fault Current Limiter (SFCL) has been proven to operate in a few milliseconds, after which the impedance remains high until the fault is cleared by conventional means (protection operated circuit breakers, fuses, etc). The SFCL’s operation is sufficiently fast to ensure that the first peak of the fault current is limited. The subsequent limited current can be set to suit a specific application. Three devices (one per DNO) will be constructed and installed covering a range of applications: transformer tails, bus section, and interconnected network connection. The successful completion of this project is likely to pave the way for higher voltage devices.

This project aims to design, develop and trial three 12kV SFCL devices on three different UK networks.