Scotland’s considerable length with power transmission and distribution lines passing close to shoreline is very exposed to salt spray from sea over the power system equipment. This also increasing by new plans to develop marine renewable energy (offshore wind, wave and tidal energy, etc.) and growing investment on oil and gas industries.
Insulators used for overhead lines and their substation in coastal areas are generally suffered from rapid salt contamination accumulation particularly in the presence of wind. When the salt layer formed on the insulator surface becomes wet, due to fog, condensation or rainfall, the surface conductivity increases. This will cause increasing leakage current, initiation of partial discharge and under certain conditions, can lead to insulator flashover and possibly power outage. Since the route of these lines passes through heavy contamination area, one solution is to increase the length of insulator strings. This will cause increasing the size of tower structures and large right-of-way width which is not an economical solution.
The purpose of this project is to describe the mechanisms of the salt deposit process on high voltage line insulators and to propose a model in order to simulate the salt accumulation process. The output from this work is to determine the severity of this kind of contamination and subsequently determine a suitable mitigation method to overcome this problem. This will help to increase the reliability of power transmission from marine renewable energy power plants. The continuity of supplying reliable energy to industries related to oil and gas is also vital and could be increased by research in this area.