Ramat Hasharon, Israel (PressExposure) April 02, 2009 -- UPSonNet recent study reveals that power failures are markedly related to season, occurring mainly due to transformer failures, standby generator starting troubles and underground cable malfunctions, all victims of poor maintenance that could be avoided.
Forty two major worldwide Power Failure reported incidents were analyzed. All occurred during February 2009, each affecting thousands up to hundreds of thousands people. The study results indicate that most failures are due to Transformerâs failures, Generator starting problems and Underground cable malfunctions which failed in Stormy Weather. Proper preventive maintenance could have eliminated most defects and the associated power failures.
Natural causes, reported as lightning, snow, air contamination, trees, ice, no rain, as well as any incident reported as transmission line failure, which may or may not refer to natural causes, form together only thirty five percents of total power loss incidents. Defective equipment is responsible for forty six percent of power loss incidents and is the main reason for power losses. Seven percent of outages occurred due to automotive accidents. The reason of additional twelve percent is unclear.
Equipment malfunction diagnosis indicates that nature is not to be blamed. Most of the studied power equipment, which failed during storms was revealed to be already defective, and couldnât perform within its designed limits.
Lightning and switching voltages generated in the grid are generally attenuated and clamped to the insulation levels of line isolators and surge protective devices. Healthy transformers and cables should be able to withstand these voltage levels, and backup generators should start when needed.
Performance of proper preventive maintenance can solve most of power failure problems. Simple, cost effective monitors based on technologies such as Partial Discharge (PD) and Infrared tomography are able to detect transformer defects, and allow scheduling corrective actions in time. Power outage simulation exercising can reveal generatorâs starting problems. PD methods, Power Factor measurements, as well as other monitoring methods, offered by test instruments manufacturers, can alarm before the stormy season, about defective underground cables, which require treatment.
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