Ageing Assessment of Power Transformer Kraft Paper Insulation Using Optical Speckle

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Hassanzadeh Khakmardani, Hamid
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Power transformers play an important role in electric networks. Copper windings wrapped in kraft paper and immersed in a tank of mineral oil are their main composition. Oil-impregnated paper is a very common insulator in power transforms, due to its durability and endurance. Kraft paper, a wood-based fiber from cellulose, can gradually degrade due to the ambient effects such as high-voltage electric field, temperature, and moisture in the normal working condition of transformers. Aged paper is more prone to experience electric breakdown which finally results in transformer failures. It is essential to monitor paper insulation condition. Conventional methods for evaluating kraft paper are mainly based on chemical analyses which require sampling of the surrounding oil and are usually time-consuming and expensive. Investigation on and classification of aged kraft paper with four different levels of thermal ageing using a potentially fast, simple, and inexpensive optical setup based on optical speckle is the main subject of this thesis. Speckle interference patterns from a laser diode source have been captured by a CCD camera. Classification based on textural features shows very good discrimination between ageing classes making this technique promising for industrial applications.
power transformer insulation, optical laser speckle