A Brief Discussion Regarding Switchgear Power Systems

A Brief Discussion Regarding switchgear power systems

Electrical energy is becoming a precious resource, as the number of installations requiring large amounts of power continue to grow exponentially. This energy is generated at various types of power stations worldwide and must then reach specific commercial and industrial facilities. As power stations are generally located some distance from both commercial and industrial regions, the successful delivery of electrical energy relies heavily upon an efficient transfer chain.

In order to effectively deliver electrical energy long distances along this supply chain, the voltage of the energy coming from a power station is normally increased to over 35,000 volts. This voltage increase is undertaken at power substation to prevent the loss of too much energy over the transfer distance, and to ensure that an appropriate amount reaches the consumer.

Extremely high voltages however, can often cause problems within the transfer system, especially in the event of a fault. In order to repair and control these issues the flow of electrical energy must be consequently be controlled. This normally involves the deliberate making, or breaking of electrical connections. Switchgear devices are consequently utilized to fulfill this purpose.

High Voltage switchgear power systems

At the high voltage end of the energy supply chain, which refers to the highly complex arrangement of transformers, electrical motors and distribution lines that exists between the power station and the residential, commercial or industrial recipient, lie power substations.

Power substations house exceptionally advanced high voltage switchgear components such as circuit breakers and disconnectors, which allows for the protection of attached equipment. It more importantly however, allows for the isolation of certain components from the flow of electricity, which in turn makes safe repairs and replacement of components possible.

Medium Voltage switchgear power systems

Medium switchgear power systems unlike high voltage systems are utilized when dealing with voltages between 1000 and 35000 volts, and are found within facilities. Some installations such as industrial plants, power companies and water treatment plants, which deal with higher voltages than normal industrial facilities, utilize medium voltage switchgear power systems in their power generation, distribution and transmission installations.

The purpose of this equipment within the installations however, is much the same as high voltage switchgear systems; to control and monitor the flow of electrical energy throughout the establishment, and to help ensure personnel safety.

Low Voltage switchgear power systems

Low voltage switchgear power systems, like medium voltage systems, are also utilized in industrial settings, however usually when dealing with voltages less than 1000 volts. These systems are generally a part of the overall in-house electrical configuration, and involve the same extremely complex arrangement of Circuit Breakers, fuses and electrical relays, and complex software configurations as higher voltage systems. They also serve the same purpose as the medium and high voltage systems: to monitor, regulate and control electrical connections.

It can be noted that high, medium and low voltage switchgear systems all play a pivotal role in safely and efficiently delivering electrical energy to, and within, industrial and commercial installations. With ever present advances in technology regarding switchgear power systems, it can only be assumed that the efficiency and safety of these systems will continue to improve.