Framework to reduce damage to power transmission systems developed

Framework to reduce damage to power transmission systems developed
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Framework to reduce damage to power transmission systems developed 

Highlights

Strengthening towers nearest to the coast may somewhat help reduce the number of towers damaged during a cyclone, but its resultant impact on the affected population may not be as significant.

Strengthening towers nearest to the coast may somewhat help reduce the number of towers damaged during a cyclone, but its resultant impact on the affected population may not be as significant. A greater number of reinforced towers or a greater level of strengthening in them based on tailor-made and efficient reinforcement prioritisation strategies in a particular region leads to better functionality of power transmission systems.

Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Gandhinagar, have developed a comprehensive framework that can reduce the damage to power transmission systems in coastal areas under cyclone scenarios. The team used damage-cum-wind speed data of Cyclone Fani in Odisha to develop a fragility model for towers, which helps assess the functionality of the network and the influence of strategic interventions on the same.

According to the team, they found that the most efficient strategy could be to pick a fraction of towers from the highest wind speed zones (according to the Indian standards) that are associated with substations serving a large population.

The study results revealed that a greater number of reinforced towers or a greater level of strengthening in them based on tailor-made and efficient reinforcement prioritisation strategies in a particular region leads to better functionality of power transmission systems. The research team also found that strengthening the towers in a transmission line associated with important substations (importance was quantified in terms of population served by the substation) close to the coastline led to maximum enhancement in performance, meaning lesser population is affected, they claimed.

"This is a first of its kind research work because here we were able to consider a large-scale network, its relationship with the coastline, a suitable context-specific fragility curve for the towers, and realistic cyclone scenarios in a reasonable manner, which led to interesting insights into strengthening strategies for the power transmission network of Odisha.

The framework can be useful for cost-effective strengthening of transmission tower networks of other coastal states of India as well, such as West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, and Maharashtra," said, Manish Kumar, Associate Professor at IIT Gandhinagar

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