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Aging evaluation of silicone rubber insulators using leakage current and flashover voltage analysis

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5 Author(s)
Ahmadi-Joneidi, I. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Tehran, Tehran, Iran ; Majzoobi, A. ; Shayegani-akmal, A.A. ; Mohseni, H.
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Ultraviolet (UV) radiation decreases the hydrophobicity of silicone rubber (SiR) insulators. Lack of hydrophobicity on the surface of such insulators lowers the flashover voltage and increases the Leakage Current (LC) of insulators in the moist environment. This paper presents the artificial UV radiation effects on three types of 20 kV SiR insulators in a chamber with nine UV-C lamps (50 W/m2) for up to 5000 hours. To simulate the moist environment, solid layer method is applied according to IEC 60507 that includes artificial pollution deposition on the insulator surface. Fast Fourier transform of the LC waveforms indicates that the third and the fifth harmonic components are quite sensitive to any incremental discharge on the insulator surface. This sensitivity makes the frequency spectrum of the LC a good criterion to distinguish three distinct SiR insulator situations under the electric stress: 1) no discharge, 2) dry band arcing/corona discharge and 3) continuous arc. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and scanning electron microscope images depict that the polluted insulators include much larger degraded parts under electric stress after aging. Measurements also show that the flashover voltages and the hydrophobicity of aged insulators decrease as the UV exposure time increases for different levels of moisture and pollution.

Published in:

Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:20 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

February 2013

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