• Enhancing the efficiency and lifespan of high-voltage systems through precise SF6 measurement


Enhancing the efficiency and lifespan of high-voltage systems through precise SF6 measurement

Feb 27 2024

Sulphur hexafluoride (SF6), a colourless and odourless gas composed of sulphur and six fluorine atoms, plays a crucial role in the electrical industry. SF6 exhibits an electrical insulating capability approximately three times higher than that of air, making it a premier insulating and switching gas in medium and high-voltage applications.

In high-voltage systems and switchgear, SF6 serves to prevent short circuits and arcs while enhancing efficiency. Pure SF6 is the standard filling in gas-insulated switchgear (GIS). However, over time, gas chambers become contaminated with water vapour (H2O) due to permeation and desorption from internal materials.

Although water vapour and SF6 do not typically react with each other, in the presence of high-energy discharges, hydrogen and oxygen dissociate from water vapour and react with sulphur and fluorine from SF6, leading to the formation of decomposition by-products. These include sulphur dioxide (SO2) and hydrofluoric acid (HF), which can corrode the internal components of gas chambers. Using SF6 with low water vapour content (low humidity) is critical to minimise the risk of forming these corrosive compounds.

Process Insights has developed technology to perform precise monitoring of humidity, SF6 purity, and SO2 concentration in SF6-insulated switchgear (GIS) and other high-voltage equipment. The MBW CALIBRATION MODEL 973-SF6 is an advanced SF6 gas analyser that provides a high-quality and environmentally friendly measurement solution within a single self-contained unit.

This innovation delivers accurate measurement data, contributing to the preventive maintenance of GIS systems. This technology allows operators to maximise the efficiency and lifespan of their high-voltage systems while minimising environmental impact.

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