The research in this paper consists of practical experimentation on a gas insulated section of high voltage equipment filled with carbon dioxide and technical air as a direct replacement to sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) and analyses the results of PD measurement by way of internal UHF sensors and external HFCTs. The results contribute to ongoing efforts to replace the global warming gas SF6 with an alternative such as pure carbon dioxide or technical air and are applicable to mixtures of electronegative gases that have a high content of buffer gas including carbon dioxide. The experiments undertaken involved filling a full-scale gas insulated line demonstrator with different pressures of CO2 or technical air and applying voltages up to 242 kV in both clean conditions and particle contaminated conditions. The results show that carbon dioxide and technical air can insulate a gas section normally insulated with SF6 at phase-to-earth voltage of 242 kV and that both HFCT and UHF sensors can be used to detect partial discharge with natural gases. The internal UHF sensors show the most accurate PD location results but external HFCTs offer a good compromise and very similar location accuracy.
Keywords: carbon dioxide (CO2); gas insulated transmission lines (GIL); high frequency current transformer (HFCT); partial discharge (PD); sulphur hexafluoride (SF6); technical air; ultra high frequency (UHF) sensors.