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What You Need to Know About IEC 60815 and High Voltage Insulation


IEC 60815: Guide for the selection and dimensioning of high voltage insulators for polluted conditions




If you are working with high voltage systems, you know how important it is to choose and size the right insulators for your application. Insulators are devices that prevent electric current from flowing between conductors or between conductors and ground. They are essential for the safety and reliability of high voltage systems.




IEC 60815: Guide for the selection and dimensioning of high ....pdf


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However, not all insulators are suitable for all environments. Some environments are more polluted than others, meaning that they have more contaminants in the air, such as dust, salt, smoke, industrial emissions, etc. These contaminants can deposit on the surface of the insulators and reduce their insulation performance. They can also create conductive layers or bridges that can cause flashovers, which are sudden and disruptive discharges of electricity across the insulator.


To avoid these problems, you need to select and dimension your insulators according to the level and type of pollution in your environment. This is where IEC 60815 comes in handy. IEC 60815 is a technical specification that provides guidance on how to do this. It applies to ceramic and glass insulators for alternating current (a.c.) systems with nominal voltages greater than 1 kV.


What is IEC 60815?




IEC 60815 is a technical specification issued by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), which is a global organization that prepares and publishes standards for electrical, electronic and related technologies. IEC 60815 was first published in 1986 as a technical report, and then revised and updated in 2008 as a technical specification.


IEC 60815 consists of four parts:


  • Part 1: Definitions, information and general principles



  • Part 2: Ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems



  • Part 3: Composite insulators for a.c. systems



  • Part 4: Insulators for d.c. systems



This article will focus on Part 2, which is applicable to ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems.


What does IEC 60815 Part 2 cover?




IEC 60815 Part 2 covers the following aspects of selecting and dimensioning ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution:


  • It gives general definitions of terms related to pollution and insulators.



  • It describes different types of pollution and how they affect the insulation performance of insulators.



  • It provides methods for evaluating the pollution severity of a site, based on measurements of equivalent salt deposit density (ESDD), non-soluble deposit density (NSDD), surface conductance (SES) or surface leakage current (SLC).



  • It defines pollution severity classes (PSC) based on the values of ESDD, NSDD, SES or SLC.



  • It gives guidance on how to select the appropriate type and profile of insulator for a given pollution severity class.



  • It gives guidance on how to determine the minimum specific creepage distance (SCD) of an insulator for a given pollution severity class.



  • It gives guidance on how to verify the insulation performance of an insulator by laboratory or field tests.



Why is IEC 60815 Part 2 useful?




IEC 60815 Part 2 is useful because it helps you to:


  • Avoid flashovers and insulation failures due to pollution.



  • Improve the safety and reliability of your high voltage system.



  • Optimize the cost and performance of your insulators.



  • Harmonize your practices with international standards.



How can you access IEC 60815 Part 2?




You can access IEC 60815 Part 2 by downloading it as a PDF file from the IEC webstore. You can also purchase a hardcopy version from the same website. The PDF file costs CHF 290 (Swiss francs), which is equivalent to about USD 320 or EUR 270. The hardcopy version costs CHF 290 plus shipping fees.


What are some examples of applying IEC 60815 Part 2?




IEC 60815 Part 2 can be applied to various situations where ceramic and glass insulators are used in high voltage systems with respect to pollution. Here are some examples of such situations:


  • A utility wants to design a new overhead transmission line in a coastal area with high salinity and humidity. The utility uses IEC 60815 Part 2 to measure the pollution severity of the site, based on ESDD and NSDD values. The utility then selects the appropriate type and profile of insulator for the pollution severity class, and determines the minimum specific creepage distance required for each insulator.



  • A substation operator wants to assess the performance of existing ceramic insulators in an industrial area with high dust and smoke emissions. The operator uses IEC 60815 Part 2 to measure the pollution severity of the site, based on SES values. The operator then compares the measured SES values with the reference USCD values of the insulators, and decides whether to replace or clean the insulators.



  • A manufacturer wants to test a new ceramic insulator profile for a.c. systems under polluted conditions. The manufacturer uses IEC 60815 Part 2 to select the appropriate test methods and parameters, based on the type and level of pollution. The manufacturer then conducts laboratory or field tests on the new insulator profile, and evaluates its insulation performance.



What are some limitations and challenges of IEC 60815 Part 2?




IEC 60815 Part 2 is a useful and comprehensive guide for selecting and dimensioning ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution. However, it also has some limitations and challenges that need to be considered and addressed. Here are some of them:


  • IEC 60815 Part 2 does not cover all possible types and combinations of pollution that may occur in practice. For example, it does not consider ice or snow contamination, or mixed AC/DC systems. Therefore, users need to exercise caution and judgement when applying IEC 60815 Part 2 to specific cases that are not covered by the standard.



  • IEC 60815 Part 2 requires long-term measurements of pollution parameters, which may be difficult or impractical to obtain in some situations. For example, there may be security or accessibility issues, or lack of resources or equipment. Therefore, users need to find alternative or complementary methods to estimate the pollution severity of a site, such as using historical data, satellite images, or modelling tools.



  • IEC 60815 Part 2 relies on empirical relationships and statistical data that may not reflect the actual behaviour of insulators under polluted conditions. For example, there may be variations in material properties, manufacturing processes, ageing effects, or environmental factors that affect the insulation performance of insulators. Therefore, users need to verify and validate the results of IEC 60815 Part 2 by conducting appropriate tests or monitoring activities.



What are some future developments of IEC 60815 Part 2?




IEC 60815 Part 2 is a valuable and widely used guide for selecting and dimensioning ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution. However, it is not a static document, but rather a dynamic one that needs to be revised and updated periodically to reflect the latest knowledge and experience in the field. Therefore, IEC 60815 Part 2 is currently under revision by IEC TC 36, which is the technical committee responsible for insulators.


The revision of IEC 60815 Part 2 aims to achieve the following objectives:


  • To make it more consistent and compatible with the other parts of IEC 60815, especially Part 4, which covers insulators for d.c. systems.



  • To simplify and clarify the methods and parameters for evaluating the pollution severity of a site, and to provide more guidance and examples on how to apply them.



  • To revise and update the values and tables of reference USCD for different pollution severity classes, based on more recent data and statistics.



  • To include more information and recommendations on specific types and profiles of insulators that are suitable for different pollution environments.



  • To incorporate new developments and innovations in ceramic and glass insulator technology, such as hydrophobic glaze, self-cleaning surfaces, etc.



The revision of IEC 60815 Part 2 is expected to be completed by 2024, and will result in a new edition of the technical specification that will replace the current one. The new edition will provide more accurate and reliable guidance for selecting and dimensioning ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution.


How can you learn more about IEC 60815 Part 2?




If you want to learn more about IEC 60815 Part 2 and its application, you can use the following resources:


  • You can read the full text of IEC 60815 Part 2 by downloading it as a PDF file or purchasing a hardcopy version from the IEC webstore.



  • You can consult other related standards and technical reports from IEC or other organizations, such as IEC 60071-2, IEC TR 62730, CIGRE TB 361, etc.



  • You can attend training courses or workshops on IEC 60815 Part 2 offered by various institutions or experts in the field.



  • You can participate in technical forums or events where IEC 60815 Part 2 is discussed or presented by its authors or users.



  • You can contact IEC TC 36 or its members for any questions or feedback on IEC 60815 Part 2.



What are some best practices for using IEC 60815 Part 2?




IEC 60815 Part 2 is a helpful and practical guide for using ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution. However, it is not a substitute for professional judgement and experience. Therefore, when using IEC 60815 Part 2, you should also follow some best practices to ensure optimal results. Here are some of them:


  • You should always consider the specific characteristics and requirements of your system and application, such as voltage level, current rating, switching frequency, fault level, etc.



  • You should always consider the local environmental and climatic conditions of your site, such as temperature, humidity, wind, rain, solar radiation, etc.



  • You should always perform a comprehensive and representative assessment of the pollution severity of your site, using appropriate methods and parameters, and taking into account the variations and trends over time.



  • You should always select and dimension your insulators based on the worst-case scenario of pollution severity, and apply a suitable safety margin or factor.



  • You should always verify and validate your selection and dimensioning of insulators by conducting adequate tests or monitoring activities, either in the laboratory or in the field.



  • You should always inspect and maintain your insulators regularly and properly, according to their condition and performance.



What are some common mistakes or pitfalls to avoid when using IEC 60815 Part 2?




IEC 60815 Part 2 is a useful and reliable guide for using ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution. However, it is not a foolproof or error-free document. Therefore, when using IEC 60815 Part 2, you should also avoid some common mistakes or pitfalls that may lead to incorrect or unsatisfactory results. Here are some of them:


  • You should not use IEC 60815 Part 2 for situations or applications that are not covered or intended by the standard, such as d.c. systems, ice or snow contamination, mixed AC/DC systems, etc.



  • You should not use IEC 60815 Part 2 without understanding its scope, principles, methods, parameters, and limitations.



  • You should not use IEC 60815 Part 2 without consulting other relevant standards or technical reports that may complement or supersede it.



  • You should not use IEC 60815 Part 2 without updating yourself on the latest revision or edition of the standard that may incorporate new developments or changes.



  • You should not use IEC 60815 Part 2 without seeking expert advice or assistance if you have any doubts or difficulties in applying it.



Conclusion




IEC 60815 Part 2 is a technical specification that provides guidance on how to select and dimension ceramic and glass insulators for a.c. systems with respect to pollution. It covers the following aspects:


  • It defines different types and levels of pollution and how they affect the insulation performance of insulators.



  • It provides methods for evaluating the pollution severity of a site, based on measurements of ESDD, NSDD, SES or SLC.



  • It defines pollution severity classes based on the values of ESDD, NSDD, SES or SLC.



  • It gives guidance on how to select the appropriate type and profile of insulator for a given pollution severity class.



  • It gives guidance on how to determine the minimum specific creepage distance of an insulator for a given pollution severity class.



  • It gives guidance on how to verify the insulation performance of an insulator by laboratory or field tests.



IEC 60815 Part 2 is useful because it helps to:


  • Avoid flashovers and insulation failures due to pollution.



  • Improve the safety and reliability of high voltage systems.



  • Optimize the cost and performance of insulators.



  • Harmonize the practices with international standards.



IEC 60815 Part 2 is currently under revision by IEC TC 36, which aims to make it more consistent and compatible with the other parts of IEC 60815, especially Part 4, which covers insulators for d.c. systems. The revision also aims to simplify and clarify the methods and parameters for evaluating the pollution severity of a site, and to revise and update the values and tables of reference USCD for different pollution severity classes. The revision is expected to be completed by 2024, and will result in a new edition of the technical specification that will replace the current one.


If you want to learn more about IEC 60815 Part 2 and its application, you can access it from the IEC webstore, consult other related standards and technical reports, attend training courses or workshops, participate in technical forums or events, or contact IEC TC 36 or its members. b99f773239


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