Low voltage stabilizers could be used to reduce the damage caused by high-voltage surges
A low voltage stabilization (LVS) device can reduce high-speed and/or high-frequency power surges, the Australian Energy Market Operator has announced.
LVSs can reduce the speed and/ or frequency of surges and can be used as a mitigation to ensure that there is no increase in electricity consumption.
Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg said the LVS technology could also help to minimise the impact of surges on power lines, as it was being used in places like Australia’s Gold Coast, where it was used to mitigate the effects of the Great Southern Power Station (GSP) failure in 2016.
“We have been able to use low voltage stabilized stabilizers to reduce power surge damage, and we’ve also found them to be a very cost effective mitigation in the event of a surge,” Mr Frydenber said.
The energy market operator said LVS devices could reduce the amount of power being generated by homes, businesses and public infrastructure, while also protecting the electrical system from potential damage.
It’s a technology that was originally developed for electric buses and other small electric vehicles, but has since found its way into high-rise buildings.
The technology is known as LVS, for Low Voltage Transistor.
It is a technology developed by Japanese electrical engineering firm Hitachi.
Mr Fryderberg said that while there were concerns over the safety of LVS technologies, the technology could be beneficial in a variety of circumstances.
“In particular, LVS can reduce power surges in high-risk locations such as hotels, retail outlets, schools and residential buildings,” he said.
“The ability to reduce high voltage surges has significant benefits for both the consumer and the electricity provider.”
Low voltage LVS has already been used in the United States to reduce large power surges on the West Coast and in South Australia.
“This technology can also be used in areas with high-profile power infrastructure, such as large hospitals, universities and schools, where large amounts of energy are consumed,” Mr Curry said.
Low voltage stabilized generators have been used to limit the frequency and speed of electricity surges in Australia, such in Queensland, which has been plagued by a string of high-temperature incidents.
The latest incident, which occurred on December 19, involved a transformer at a residential home in the north-western city of Brisbane.
The transformer was in the process of switching on a generator when a high-energy pulse of about 3,000 volts caused a fire in the transformer’s circuit.
That resulted in a loss of life and a total loss of power for the area.
A fire service spokesman said the transformer was taken out by firefighting crews, while another fire was extinguished by an Energex generator.
The outage caused a blackout in the city, while a number of power lines in the area were also temporarily closed.
The power outage caused the loss of about 500 homes and businesses in the affected area.
The incident was also linked to the construction of the GSP, which is due to be replaced in 2021.
The GSP is the world’s largest hydroelectric power plant and is expected to be completed by 2030.
The state government is now working on the design of a replacement.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries has been asked to provide the state with the necessary financial assistance for the construction, maintenance and operation of the new facility.
The cost of the project has not been disclosed.