FAST recently re-engineered a multivendor IEC 61850 Station Bus Substation Automation System using a top down engineering approach for system specification and integration. The project was a proof of concept put forward to a utility to replicate an already in service design to highlight engineering design efficiencies. The following is an outline of the process of engineering the system and resulting CID files through HELINKS System Tool Set. The results were then compared to the utility’s commissioned CID files which were created using multiple Vendor Tools.>
IEC 61850 is a standard for the design of electrical substation automation and is a part of the International Electrotechnical Commissions (IEC) Technical Committee 57 (TC57) architecture for electric power systems.>The IEC 61850 standard is an innovative approach to substation automation that will result in improvements in both performance and costs in protection systems and data acquisition.The standard defines the communications interfaces, provides object models for common substation plant and functions and standards within a substation.
System Specification for IEC 61850 is an optional component and is used to specify from a high level "what" the system should look like and "what" functions it should perform. It allows a standards based approach to design that provides a framework for creating repeatable and reusable engineering. It is not interested so much in the "how" a system is implemented- albeit the how will often be in mind during this phase to some extent. Given that the "what" is specified without the "how" it is the enabler of IEC 61850's desire for interoperability and interchangeability. The"Top down engineering" approach in System Engineering begins with the creation of a comprehensive System Specification.Thorough detail in the System Specification stage reduces engineering time and can simplify thelater "System Integration" Stage.