Losses in the Electric Power System
Category : electrical
The Electrical Power System consists of generation, transmission and distribution. Losses in the Electric Power System refer to the generated electric energy that passes through transmission lines and distribution networks, but which is not commercialized, either for technical or commercial reasons.
The transmission of energy, whether in transmission or distribution, inevitably results in technical losses related to the transformation of electrical energy into thermal energy in conductors (joule effect), losses in transformer cores, dielectric losses, etc.
Non-technical or commercial losses stem mainly from theft (clandestine connection, direct network diversion) or energy fraud (tampering in measurement), popularly known as “cats”, metering and billing errors.
Losses in the Electric Power System are controlled through the automation of the electric system and power factor control (PF), according to the ANEEL Ordinance, which establishes PF = 0.92. This control against the big consumers is done with great seriousness and those who escape the limit of 0.92 will bear a heavy fine.
Another way to control losses is by using peak and intermediate rush hour rates. Many customers chose to use the Generator Group that was inoperative at these times, putting it to operate, in order to reduce the consumption of electricity at these times. The amount that is spent on diesel is much lower than with electricity tariffs and fines.
This schedule is composed of a period of three consecutive hours that is adopted between 5:00 pm and 10:00 pm, including holidays, except Saturdays and Sundays. These times can vary from concessionaire to concessionaire, according to the region in which it is established.
It is the period comprised of an hour before and an hour after the rush hour.
It’s the remaining 19 hours of the day.
The white tariff for residential customers is in force, which is the incentive for not using high power equipment, such as shower, electric faucet and iron, during peak and intermediate hours.
The white tariff is a new tariff option that signals to consumers the variation of the energy value according to the day and time of consumption. It will be offered to consumer units that are serviced at low voltage (127, 220, 380 or 440 volts, denominated group B) and to those belonging to group A that opts for the low voltage tariff. The measure was approved in a public meeting of the Board of Directors of ANEEL.
The star system transformers projects, as mandated by ANEEL, also contribute to the reduction of losses because it is a more balanced and reliable system than the delta system. The goal is to eliminate, over time, the delta distribution system.
Inspections with thermovision to check and subsequently eliminate hot spots – current leakage – occurring in compromised connections, equipment or insulators are constant practices, as well as load balancing between primary phases.
The construction of new DTEs and new circuit designs, including changing the distribution voltage class from 5 kv to 15 kv or 25 kv, according to the region, are prime factors to reduce losses in the Electric Power System, since the higher the voltage the lower the current and, consequently, the lower the losses.
Moving to compact primary network – space cable – is also a determining factor for loss reduction. The Department of Distributed Engineering analyzes and controls all primary circuits, and when necessary intercedes for its improvement.
Technical Losses in Distribution
The distribution system is divided according to the network segments (high, medium and low voltage), transformers, connection extensions and meters. Specific models are then applied for each of these segments, using simplified information of existing networks and equipment, such as length and gauge of conductors, power of transformers and power supplied to consumer units. Based on this information, it is estimated the percentage of efficient technical losses related to the energy injected into the network.
The non-technical losses are calculated by the difference between total losses and technical losses. The regulatory values of non-technical losses are calculated by ANEEL by a methodology for comparing the performance of distributors, observing efficiency criteria and the socioeconomic characteristics of concession areas .
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