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The power grid, especially distribution grid, has been more complicated due to distributed generations (DGs) with renewable energy sources and the smart grid. The complexity changes two things in terms of a fault; higher prospective fault current and the temporal variation of sources and loads. To correspond to those remarkable changes, we propose a fault current controller (FCC) named “smart FCC.” The smart FCC consists of a superconducting coil with a freewheeling diode if necessary, four thyristors, and a control unit. Smart FCC can not only limit but also control the current when a fault occurs. The smart grid technology can provide so enough information that it is possible to estimate which level of limited current should be the best in the real-time situation of the grid. Based on a real-time calculation of optimal fault current using the smart grid monitoring technologies, this new device is always ready to adjust the fault current. In this paper, we introduce a concept of the smart FCC and prove the concept. Various topologies have been proposed and simulated. Finally, a case study on a distribution class of 22.9 kV smart FCC has been conducted based on a conceptional system design.
Date of Publication: June 2011