A new failure protection algorithm for circuit breakers using the power loss of switching arc incidents

Behnam Feizifar, Omer Usta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)


The principal function of circuit breakers (CBs) is to isolate a portion of the power network from the rest of it in a timely manner following an opening command. Any failure in the opening operation of CBs, especially following a fault condition, will almost certainly result in a catastrophic event. Therefore, the issue of failure detection of CBs is essential and has a vital role in power system protection. This paper presents a novel power-based algorithm for failure detection of CBs. The power loss of CBs due to an arcing event increases as the arcing time gets longer. The arcing time of CBs increases with defective operations originating from any failure or malfunction for different reasons. The proposed method uses the power difference between the input and output terminals of CBs to calculate the power loss due to an arcing event, which can then be used to estimate the arcing energy. A trip signal is initiated whenever the estimated arcing energy for a single opening operation reaches a predefined trip level, which shows a failure in CB operation. This predefined trip value is related to the integration of the maximum power capacity of the CB during an opening operation time. Computer simulation studies conducted to analyze the performance of the proposed technique demonstrate that the algorithm is capable of discriminating between normal and abnormal arcing energies and thus identifying malfunctions or failures in the opening operations of CBs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1982-1997
Number of pages16
JournalTurkish Journal of Electrical Engineering & Computer Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 6 Mar 2019


  • arcing energy
  • arc model
  • arcing time
  • circuit breaker
  • failure detection


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