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P2760 - Guide for Wind Power Plant Collector System Design for Personnel Safety

The intent of this guide is to provide guidance and information pertinent to the grounding practices in wind power plant collector system for personal safety. The specific purposes of this guide are to: a) Identify differences between substation grounding (covered under IEEE Std 80) and wind power plant collector system grounding. b) Establish, as a basis for design, safety limits of potential differences that can exist in a wind power plant collection system under fault conditions between points that can be contacted by the human body. c) Review wind power plant grounding practices with reference to safety and develop safety criteria, for the design and provide a procedure for the design of practical grounding systems, based on these criteria. d) Develop analytical methods as an aid in the understanding and solution of typical voltage gradient problems within a wind power plant. This guide is primarily concerned with safe grounding practices within wind power plants for power frequencies in the range of 50-60 Hz. DC systems and the effects of lightning surges are beyond the scope of this guide. A grounding system designed as described herein will, nonetheless, provide some degree of protection against steep wave front surges entering the wind turbine and passing to earth through its grounding system electrodes.This guide is primarily concerned with the collector systems grounding for wind power plants. This guide is not intended for the wind power plant substation, however since the substation is typically interconnected with the collector system, its design might affect or be affected by the collector system. With proper caution, the methods described herein could be used in determining the impact of the collector system on substation safety and vice versa. Quantitative analysis of the effects of lightning surges is beyond the scope of this document. Similarly, this guide does not cover off-shore wind power plants, solar power plants or substation grounding.
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