Siemens Smart Infrastructure launched its new PowerLink CM, a condition monitoring solution for high-voltage AC and DC transmission lines. To ensure reliable power supply, optimize grid utilization and prevent blackouts. The device is designed to precisely locate faults in the transmission grid and continuously track line conditions. One single PowerLink CM device is sufficient to monitor line lengths of up to 500 km. Faults, as well as line condition, can be detected in powered, unpowered or grounded lines. Fault reports are received by the affected substation and are forwarded from there to the control room. For continuous line monitoring, the device can be connected to MindSphere, the open cloud-based Internet of Things (IoT) platform from Siemens, which facilitates transparent processing of all line data in the cloud. This allows grid operators to analyze status reports and to optimize maintenance activities.
Robert Klaffus, CEO Digital Grid, Siemens Smart Infrastructure said: “With the new PowerLink CM solution, transmission grid operators can detect and locate possible line problems before causing major transmission network issues. PowerLink CM supports predictive operations management. Transmission grid operators can better manage their assets, avoid blackouts, and guarantee a reliable supply of electricity.”
Existing fault localization solutions for power lines use detectors based on travelling wave technology. For condition monitoring, they are often supplemented with specialized sensors installed along the line supported by regular visual inspections via drones or helicopters. This approach is very costly, and not suitable for use on the unpowered or grounded lines typically found in the high-voltage direct-current transmission environment or for maintaining existing or building new power lines. The new system provides real-time monitoring of every type of transmission power line by continuously measuring the line profile. Location information is available at the time of the event, but can also be determined after the fact. Copper theft, common in some countries, can be detected even in unpowered lines.