Radial vs. Ring Power Distribution Systems – What Are the Differences?
Most commercial and industrial electrical system installations involve an electrical power distribution system. An electric power distribution system is between the transmission station and individual industrial and commercial customers. Typically, this power is transmitted at a lower voltage than the transmission of power over long transmission lines over great distances. The distribution system tends to step down power to commercial and industrial electrical systems.
The most common electrical power distribution systems include:
- Radial Power Distribution Systems
- Ring Power Distribution Systems
What is a Radial Power Distribution System?
A radial power distribution system is used for substations or generating stations located at the center of the customer’s location. For a radial PDS In this system, the feeders push electricity from one end to the distributors located at the other end. The energy can only flow in one direction.
Advantages of Radial PDS
- Simple design and setup
- Low initial cost
Disadvantages of Radial PDS
- Not as reliable as other systems
- A fault in one feeder cuts off power to the distributor and doesn’t provide any backup feeder
Radial Parallel Feeder Distribution Systems
There is a version of the radial power distribution system called a parallel feeder power distribution system. This doubles the number of feeders within the system, which improves reliability but adds considerable expense due to the doubling of the feeders.
What is a Ring Power Distribution System?
Ring distribution systems are designed so that every distribution transformer connects with two feeders using different paths. These feeders form a loop that starts at the substation bus bars, goes through the load area feeding distribution transformers and returns to the substation bus bars.
Advantages of a Ring PDS
- Very reliable system
- Fewer voltage fluctuations at terminal locations
- Improved continuity of the power supply
Disadvantages of a Ring Main Distribution System
- High initial cost.
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