Selective auto-reclosing of mixed circuits based on multi-zone differential protection principle and distributed sensing

Kevin Kawal, Steven Blair, Qiteng Hong, Panagiotis N. Papadopoulos

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Environmental concerns and economic constraints have led to increasing installations of mixed conductor circuits comprising underground cables (UGCs) and overhead transmission lines (OHLs). Faults on the OHL sections of such circuits are usually temporary, while there is a higher probability that faults on UGC sections are permanent. To maintain power system reliability and security, auto-reclose (AR) schemes are typically implemented to minimize outage duration after temporary OHL faults while blocking AR for UGC faults to prevent equipment damage. AR of a hybrid UCG–OHL transmission line, therefore, requires effective identification of the faulty section. However, the different electrical characteristics of UGC and OHL sections present significant challenges to existing protection and fault location methods. This paper presents a selective AR scheme for mixed conductor circuits based on the evaluation of differential currents in multiple defined protection zones, using distributed current transformer (CT) measurements provided by passive optical sensing. Case studies are conducted with a number of different UGC–OHL configurations, and the results demonstrate that the proposed scheme can accurately identify the faulty section, enabling effective selective AR of a comprehensive range of mixed conductor circuit topologies. The proposed scheme is also more cost effective, with reduced hardware requirements compared to conventional solutions. This paper thereby validates the optimal solution for mixed circuit protection as described in CIGRE Working Group B5.23 report 587.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2558
Number of pages16
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Mar 2023


  • auto-reclosing
  • mixed conductor circuit
  • overhead transmission lines
  • underground cables
  • multi-zone differential current protection
  • distributed sensing


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