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Electrical safety in low-voltage DC microgrids with B-type residual current devices
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Gdańsk University of Technology, Faculty of Electrical and Control Engineering, ul. Narutowicza 11/12, 80-233 Gdańsk, Poland
Energa-Operator SA, ul. Marynarki Polskiej 130, 80-557 Gdańsk, Poland
University of Žilina, Faculty of Management Science and Informatics, Univerzitná 8215/1, 010 26 Žilina, Slovakia
Publication date: 2022-06-30
Eksploatacja i Niezawodność – Maintenance and Reliability 2022;24(2):346–358
  • Analyzing possible use of protective residual current devices in modern power systems.
  • Determining the protective ability of RCDs for protection in DC microgrids.
  • Indicating weak points of these protections applied in DC power systems.
  • Electrical safety enhancement by redundant RCDs.
Residual current devices (RCDs) are most popular devices used in low-voltage installations for protection against electric shock and fire. In cases of high risk of electric shock the application of RCDs is mandatory. Currently, the spread of local direct current (DC) microgrids is widely considered. This creates new challenges for protective systems, in particular those based on RCDs. The main purpose of the research is to test the operation of B-type RCDs by simulating the conditions that may occur in DC microgrids as well as assessment of the effectiveness of electrical safety with the use of such RCDs. The research has revealed that theoretically identical RCDs in terms of technical data can have different tripping properties, including no reaction to residual direct current, which poses a risk of electric shock. This signalizes the necessity of extension of the normative tests performed by manufacturers. The scope of these additional RCDs tests is indicated, from the point of view of the persons’ safety in DC microgrids.
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