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Energy Systems Center Receives Gift of Line Protection Systems

August 30, 2006

Researchers at The University of Texas at Arlington’s Energy Systems Research Center will be able to improve and expand their studies into protecting power system failures, thanks to an in-kind donation of six microcomputer-based protective relays from the Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories in Pullman, Washington. The relays will help in research to isolate faults and prevent system-wide failures.

Electrical Engineering Professor Wei-Jen Lee, director of the Energy Systems Research Center (ESRC), said that the center has had a long standing relationship with Schweitzer Engineering Labs. “We conducted a series of relay-testing workshops for them in the mid-1990s,” said Lee. “They sent a number of their engineers here to work with and learn from our faculty, and we’re pleased that Schweitzer has continued to be a supporter of our programs.”

The donated equipment includes six high-speed line protection, automation and control systems. Power system protections are needed in the event of short circuits and other interruptions. Relays isolate faults and prevent system-wide failures. ESRC researchers recently used Schweitzer relays in a hydroelectric power project for the US Army Corps of Engineers.

A spokesperson for Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories stated the firm looked forward to working closely with the ESRC and the College of Engineering to provide valuable learning tools to current and future UT-Arlington students through partnerships with industry leaders.