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Distribution Network Planning and Underground Cables
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Distribution Network Planning and Underground Cables Keeping overview while attending to detail. John MILLAR – Finland – RT.1a/5a. …with much appreciated help from, among others: Prof. Matti Lehtonen and Eero Saarijärvi. My research fields. Ampacity of underground cables

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John MILLAR – Finland – RT.1a/5a

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John millar finland rt 1a 5a

Distribution Network Planning and Underground Cables

Keeping overview while attending to detail

John MILLAR – Finland – RT.1a/5a

…with much appreciated help from, among others: Prof. Matti Lehtonen and Eero Saarijärvi

My research fields

My research fields

  • Ampacity of underground cables

    • Practical investigations of their thermal environment

    • Development of real-time algorithms

  • Network planning algorithm

    • MV, LV and MV-LV…

Underground cable rating

Underground cable rating

  • Suggeststeady-state for planning

  • The future is hard to predict…

  • Cyclic rating for existing, but note:

  • Needsthoroughknowledge of installed conditions

  • Must consider:

    • Moisture migration

    • Externalheat sources

    • Condition of existingcables

Cyclic vs steady state rating for existing mv cables

Cyclic vs. Steady-state rating forexisting MV cables

  • 90 °C:

  • steady-state rating: 382 A

  • cyclic rating: 462 A

  • 65 °C:

  • steady-state rating: 340A

  • cyclic rating: 385 A

Cables installation challenges

Cables: Installation challenges

  • Crowding of underground services

  • Duct bank and tube installation ratings more challenging

  • Charging current >> load currents for long rural cable connections

Distribution network planning

Distribution network planning

  • Automating the laborious task of trial and error planning

  • An algorithm that deals with real networks and realistic planning issues in reasonable computation times

  • Trying to keep up with contemporary developments...

Voh mv


  • ‘Optimally’ routes lines between fixed primary and secondary substations, i.e. plans the MV network.

    • Optimal or full switching – 3 levels

    • Optimal or full backup connections between main feeders

    • Existing network consideration and upgrade times

    • User-preferred network

Voh mv e g

VOH_MV, e.g.:

Voh mv lv


  • Starts with LV customers and primary substation positions

  • ‘Optimises’, according to various planning philosophies:

    • secondary substations (no. and positions)

    • connection (cable) boxes (no. and positions)

    • And, of course the MV and LV network

      • routing – switches – backup

Voh mv lv one approach

VOH_MV_LVOne approach



LV customers

Voh mv lv another approach

VOH_MV_LVAnother approach

Voh mv lv and another approach

VOH_MV_LVand another approach

Voh mv lv and finally

VOH_MV_LVand finally...

Contemporary developments

Contemporary developments

  • mmm... We know that this algorithm should be able to handle

    • distributed generation – coming ‘soon’!

    • What else?

Many thanks!

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