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Proceedings Paper

Toward increased reliability in the electric power industry: direct temperature measurement in transformers using fiber optic sensors
Author(s): Greg McDonald
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Paper Abstract

Optimal loading, prevention of catastrophic failures and reduced maintenance costs are some of the benefits of accurate determination of hot spot winding temperatures in medium and high power transformers. Temperature estimates obtained using current theoretical models are not always accurate. Traditional technology (IR, thermocouples...) are unsuitable or inadequate for direct measurement. Nortech fiber-optic temperature sensors offer EMI immunity and chemical resistance and are a proven solution to the problem. The Nortech sensor's measurement principle is based on variations in the spectral absorption of a fiber-mounted semiconductor chip and probes are interchangeable with no need for recalibration. Total length of probe + extension can be up to several hundred meters allowing system electronics to be located in the control room or mounted in the transformer instrumentation cabinet. All of the sensor materials withstand temperatures up to 250 degree(s)C and have demonstrated excellent resistance to the harsh transformer environment (hot oil, kerosene). Thorough study of the problem and industry collaboration in testing and installation allows Nortech to identify and meet the need for durable probes, leak-proof feedthroughs, standard computer interfaces and measurement software. Refined probe technology, the method's simplicity and reliable calibration are all assets that should lead to growing acceptance of this type of direct measuring in the electric power industry.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 September 1998
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 3414, Opto-Contact: Workshop on Technology Transfers, Start-Up Opportunities,and Strategic Alliances, (24 September 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.323516
Show Author Affiliations
Greg McDonald, Nortech Fibronic, Inc. (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3414:
Opto-Contact: Workshop on Technology Transfers, Start-Up Opportunities,and Strategic Alliances
Robert J. L. Corriveau; M. J. Soileau; Michel Auger, Editor(s)

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