The Programmable Resettable Sectionalizer (Type PRS) is a device which has built-in intelligence to discriminate between temporary (transient) and permanent faults on distribution systems.
It operates in conjunction with a back-up automatic circuit recloser or a reclosing circuit breaker. It is specifically designed for the protection of single-phase lateral lines.
When installed at the beginning of a lateral, it virtually eliminates nuisance outages. Its functional concept and design greatly improve system coordination.
Traditionally, the individual laterals are protected by expulsion-type fused cutouts. These cutouts are intended to operate only during a permanent fault on the lateral by carefully coordinating the fuse links with the time-current characteristics of the upstream automatic circuit recloser or reclosing circuit breaker.
Unfortunately, coordination between fuse links and upstream automatic circuit reclosers is unachievable above a few thousand amperes. Coordination, if achieved on paper, can easily change as the fault current increases due to larger capacity facilities, addition of larger substations or reconductoring. Errors in re-fusing is another way that system coordination can be lost.
A sectionalizer is a protective device which has no time-current characteristics. With no fuse curve to intersect recloser time-current characteristics, the coordination range is extended to the maximum interrupting rating of the upstream protective device (Figure 1).
This practical function makes the sectionalizer an ideal device for application on single-phase laterals where available fault currents make coordination unachievable with fuses.
Electronic resettable sectionalizers provide the utility with an economical and easily retrofittable method of enhancing protection of the distribution system. An electronic resettable sectionalizer installed at the start of a lateral, in place of a fuse, can greatly enhance system coordination service continuity and reliability at reduced costs.
The Type PRS electronic sectionalizer comprises two major components: A standard cutout mounting and an electronic module.
The design and construction of the Type PRS are such as to enhance reliability and coordination of the distribution system.
The electronic sectionalizer module fits into the standard mounting of a Chance Type C and S&C Type XS cutout. This interchangeability reduces the cost of retrofit installation.