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Research Electrical Distribution Bus

The research electrical distribution bus (REDB) is the heart of the Energy Systems Integration Facility electrical system testing capability, facilitating power flow between fixed equipment as well as equipment under test throughout the laboratories.

Photo of a technician performing maintenance on the Research Electrical Distribution Bus.

Equipment and experiments throughout the Energy Systems Integration Facility can plug into the research electrical distribution bus to interconnect. The research community can use this asset to advance its understanding of electromagnetic phenomena and enable the design and engineering of circuitry, electrical and electronic devices and equipment, sensors, instruments, and control systems to address the efficiency and reliability of power transmission systems and grid interface of variable generation.

The REDB includes AC and DC buses and related switchgear and is designed to maximize flexibility while minimizing associated risks. Each bus consists of a centralized ring-bus connected through feeders to each of the individual labs. Electrically operated switches control connections to the ring-bus. These switches can also isolate portions of the ring-bus, allowing multiple experiments to be performed simultaneously on the same bus. This capability is a unique approach to configuring electrical systems.

The two AC and two DC buses have the capacity to expand to four buses each.

  • The AC buses are four-wire, rated at 600 V, and can support variable frequencies from 16 2/3 to 400 Hz. The AC buses are rated at 250 A (200 kW capacity) and 1600 A (1 MW capacity). Configuring these systems to interconnect and support control with data collection requires high-voltage connection units and special carts designed and built onsite. The AC buses, or isolated portions thereof, may be operated with the neutral grounded or floating.

  • The DC buses are three-wire and rated at +/- 500 V from pole to common or 1000 V from negative to positive pole. The DC buses are rated at 250 A and 1600 A. The DC buses, or isolated portions thereof, may be operated with the common grounded or floating.