Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. (SEL) has completed factory acceptance testing on IEC 61850 systems benefitting two thermal power plants for Damodar Valley Corp. (DVC), India’s first multipurpose river valley project. The systems will improve power delivery to about two million DVC customers. Engineers from DVC and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. confirmed the testing at SEL’s New Delhi test facility.
“DVC achieved significant reduction in hard-wiring with auxiliary relays using IEC 61850 functionality and SEL engineering services,” said SEL India Regional Sales and Marketing Manager Neeraj Goel.
Both 2X500 MW thermal plants, located in Durgapur and Koderma, will be protected by SEL medium-voltage feeder protection relays integrated with data concentrators. The systems include redundant HMI, Ethernet switches, fiber-optic cable, SEL satellite-synchronized clocks, and an operator console. SEL India also supplied the engineering services to integrate, test, and commission the systems.
The system is connected through the IEC 61850 communications standard. By using this Ethernet standard, the plants significantly reduced required field wiring compared to hard-wired construction practices. Protection, monitoring, automation, metering, and control are shared between the control room and field devices via high-speed communications links.
Established in 1948 and modeled after the U.S. Tennessee Valley Authority, DVC initially sought to control damage caused by recurring and devastating flooding of the 25,000-sq.-km Damodar River. The “River of Sorrows,” as it was once called for its destructive history, today provides hydroelectric power, as dam construction eased the river’s flooding. DVC today focuses more on power generation, transmission, and distribution for such industries as steel, coal, and railways as well as conservation and reforestation.