Fault Path Indicators are the latest buzzword in the industry. Considering the challenges facing the Electrical industry it could not have come sooner.
Utilities have never in their history been confronted with so many diverse problems, performance responsibilities and mandates to supply power, as we are seeing today. The infrastructure boom, migration of workers and the need to increase GDP has driven the expectations for delivery higher than it has ever been. The utility must deliver power, at the lowest price, in the shortest time, with the least amount of expenditure. A tall order to say the least. Most utilities have cut their budgets, and are now required to do the same amount of work with a much smaller budget.
So how then does the introduction of Fault Path Indicators (FPIs) help?
Reduce customer dissatisfaction – Customers are happy when the power is on. Limiting the time of outages is imperative. FPIs provide valuable information of the location of the fault. The device will pick up fault current infringement, followed by the voltage loss, caused by the upstream breaker confirming the fault, and start to emit a local flash, visible from an acceptable distance. This can be remotely monitored to reduce downtime, as the exact location of the fault is then known.
SAIDI – The FPI significantly reduces driving and fault finding time. It reduces the duration for fault clearance and reduces the number of customers affected for the duration of the fault, and therefore reduces SAIDI. SAIFI – FPIs provide transient fault data. This information allows the utility to…