Backup Protection Algorithm for Failures in Modular DC Circuit Breakers

Mian Wang, Mario Zaja, Jef Beerten, Dragan Jovcic, Dirk Van Hertem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


HVDC grid protection with adequate speed and reliability is required to minimise the impact of DC faults. In particular, fast breaker failure backup protection algorithms are needed to meet the expected reliability requirements of HVDC grids. In this paper, existing breaker failure backup protection algorithms are shown inadequate to detect partial failures like a single module failure of breakers with a modular structure. This paper proposes a backup protection algorithm which rapidly detects a DC breaker failure based on estimating the counter voltage created by the energy absorption branch during an interruption. The performance of the proposed algorithm is evaluated using a four-terminal test network with both hybrid and mechanical DC breaker technologies. The simulation results show that the proposed algorithm is able to quickly detect both complete and partial failures of the two breaker technologies even considering measurement errors, noise and ageing of the energy absorption components.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3580 - 3589
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Power Delivery
Issue number6
Early online date16 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding: 10.13039/100010661-Horizon 2020 Framework Programme


  • HVDC grid protection
  • DC circuit breaker
  • Breaker failure
  • backup protection algorithm


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