Modelling power transformers cuts production costs

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Modelling transformers for high-voltage power distribution is a complex task. The use of modelling to test designs has been shown to cut costs and supply flexibility, particularly where a product range comprises of major elements, large transformers in this case, which are always slightly different from the last one manufactured.

Siemens AG's Energy Sector, particularly its Power Transmission and Distribution division, uses Electro, an electric field simulator from Integrated Engineering Software, as an every-day tool to assist in transformer design and test.

Transformers are used for the transport of energy from power-plants to consumers all over the world. Siemens AG offers tailored solutions which it develops and manufactures in the form of high- and medium-voltage switchgear, transformers and substations, automated power supply networks and service infrastructures. Every location has different characteristics, the transformer types differ, every system has different dimensions, the operational voltage ranges change and Siemens delivers systems which include AC transformers to 1000kV and high-voltage DC transformers to 800kV.

Dr Beriz Bakija supports around 20 specialists at the Technology and Innovation Department of the Transformer Section for power transmission in Nuremberg. Bakija commented: 'We are also responsible for producing new solutions that analyse new designs and insulation systems and also discover why failures occur at the test stage.

'Normally we use Electro for 2D calculation - focussing on rotational symmetry - because the insulation systems are all generally symmetrical.  But, where there are non-symmetrical sections, where leads break-out from windings for example, we use cuts through the transformer and model those aspects separately using other 2D calculations in Electro.'

As it is a fairly specialised product, Siemens makes full use of Electro and has been involved in developing enhancements to the software in association with Integrated to enhance it to Siemens' purposes.