Virtualised protection applications operated on the edge are upcoming and could transition protection systems on an architectural level. Wireless 5G-enabled edge computing allows operating protection and control applications from local datacentres and at far-edge, e.g., base stations. Older wireless technologies such as 4G only support cloud computing, which does not meet the reliability requirements of protection due to longer latency. Future medium voltage grids could consist of sensors and merging units connected to the physical grid to digitalise measurements, and all the intelligence could be concentrated at the edge. Thus, applications could use a wider range of data than a single IED.
In order to validate modern protection and control solutions operating on 5G edge, a realistic experimental setup is required. This presentation will highlight how using RTDS for CHIL simulations combined with QoS performance measurements of the wireless 5G network has enabled this research. Our system under test (SuT) encompasses merging units, protection and control devices, commercial public 5G networks, and a 5G test network. In this presentation, we will provide detailed illustrations of the SuT and further plans through ongoing expansion encompassing commercial telecommunication operator’s data centre.
Results from three time-critical use cases of virtual fault passage indicator, line differential, and intertrip protection will also be presented from the perspective of the type of data we can gather via RTDS. For future work, we will continue this research by validating network slicing and other 5G features and studying proposed 6G features and their suitability for power system applications.
Petra Raussi Chauhan | VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland