Design and Development of a Bio-Inspired UHF Sensor for Partial Discharge Detection in Power Transformers.


Department of Electrical Engineering, Universidade Federal de Campina Grande, Aprigio Veloso 882, Campina Grande 58429-900, Brazil. [Email]


In this paper, the design and development of a bio-inspired UHF sensor for partial discharge detection in power transformers is presented. The UHF sensor was developed for external use in dielectric windows of power transformers. For this purpose, a microstrip antenna was designed with a radiating element shape based on the leaf of the Jatropha mollissima (Pohl) Baill plant. Then, an epoxy coating and an aluminium enclosure were developed to protect the antenna against corrosion and to provide mechanical support, external noise immunity, and a lifetime compatibility with power transformers. In order to verify the electrical parameters of the developed sensor, measurements of the gain and the reflection coefficient were performed in an anechoic chamber. Lastly, the antenna sensitivity for denominated partial discharge (PD) detection was compared with the IEC 60270 standard method. For this purpose, simultaneous tests were carried out in a partial discharge generator setup, composed of an oil cell with needle-plane electrodes. The experimental tests demonstrated the effectiveness of the sensor for detecting PD signals with apparent charge values higher than 35 pC.


UHF sensor,antenna,bio-inspired,monitoring,partial discharge,power transformer,

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