Safety is an important factor in the power industry due to the consequences and injury risk from catastrophic failure of electrical equipment. For example, an internal fault followed by high fault-current and a high temperature electric arc can ignite a fire that spreads quickly to surrounding equipment. This aspect must therefore always be taken into account during design – even at the inception of product development – due to the fact that faulty equipment has now become one of the main contributors to outages.
Cables and their accessories are an integral part of power networks. Whenever there is a transition from overhead lines or busbars, the cable ends are sealed using terminations. Terminations are of different construction depending on whether the application is medium or high voltage. In both cases, however, care must be taken in regard to pollution withstand since they are an interface with the service environment.
In cable systems, it is important not to underestimate the important role of accessories, shown to generally be the weakest link. The accessory has to be able to handle the high electrical stresses in the cable insulation. It must also cope with the thermo-mechanical forces exerted by cables where interaction between cable and accessory significantly augment the performance required by the accessory.
Recently a higher amount of XLPE cable systems have been introduced into HV networks and more such installations are being planned. Therefore, the number of related cable accessories will also increase.
Attend the 2017 INMR WORLD CONGRESS in Barcelona-Sitges this November to hear a paper on this important topic by experts from CESI. It will present recent standards as well as proper testing requirements to ensure safe performance by accessories under different power arc events.