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There are many industrial applications of large-scale dc power systems, but only a limited amount of scientific literature addresses the modeling of dc arcs. Since the early dc-arc research focused on the arc as an illuminant, most of the early data was obtained from low-current dc systems. More recent publications provide a better understanding of the high-current dc arc. The dc-arc models reviewed in this paper cover a wide range of arcing situations and test conditions. Even with the test variations, a comparison of dc-arc resistance equations shows a fair degree of consistency in the formulations. A method for estimating incident energy for a dc arcing fault is developed based on a nonlinear arc resistance. Additional dc-arc testing is needed so that more accurate incident-energy models can be developed for dc arcs.
Date of Publication: Sept.-Oct. 2010