Further REFCL Infomation
To reduce the likelihood and impact of High Voltage networks causing bushfires, State Authorities and Power Utilities are taking action. The Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission, following the 2009 Black Saturday Bushfire event, has led to both legislative requirements, and proactive approaches. The installation of Rapid Earth Fault Current Limiter (REFCL) systems by Power Utilities is focused on limiting HV faults which historically have caused bushfires
In 2016, the Victorian Government made legislative changes that require the installation of enhanced powerline fault detection and suppression capabilities on their HV Network. The installation of REFCL systems fulfils this requirement and is currently ongoing across Victoria.
While successful in bushfire prevention, a negative by-product of REFCL systems is that during fault conditions, phase to phase voltages can cause additional stress on high voltage assets, potentially leading to failures.
Changes to Victoria’s Electricity Distribution Code in 2018 have clarified that ensuring High Voltage Assets are REFCL ready is solely the responsibility of High Voltage Customers. To protect both HV Assets and Employees, HV customers are charged with assessing their current HV system and implementing improvements where necessary.
LIVE HV offers a range of both in service and out of service testing to determine whether HV assets can withstand the elevated voltages caused during fault conditions. This allows the customer to be confident in their HV Assets during all conditions or take the necessary measures to mitigate the consequences of being connected to a REFCL protected network. Currently working with Utilities to stress test their own systems, LIVE HV is pioneering the methods used to test and ensure the integrity of HV networks.
VIC State Government – Rapid Earth Current Fault Limiter
Powercor – Bushfire Mitigation Program – REFCL