USQ Logo
The current and official versions of the course specifications are available on the web at
Please consult the web for updates that may occur during the year.

ELE3804 Power Systems Protection

Semester 1, 2020 Online
Short Description: Power Systems Protection
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences
School or Department : School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering
Student contribution band : Band 2
ASCED code : 031301 - Electrical Engineering
Grading basis : Graded




Pre-requisite: ELE1801 or Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: GCEN or METC or MEPR or GCNS or GDNS or MENS


Modern society cannot function without a reliable supply of electricity. However, an electrical power system that is completely free from failure is neither economically justifiable nor technically feasible. A power system or some part of the power system will, under certain abnormal circumstances, become faulted and as a result cease to operate as intended. A protection system, in the event of a fault, is required to maintain safety of personnel and members of the public, minimize damage to the power system, minimize interruption of supply and help maintain quality of supply. This course will help students develop the skills needed to design and carry out performance analysis of protection systems.


In this course the fundamental concepts, principles and methodologies associated with power system fault analysis and commonly used protection schemes shall be analysed and studied. Upon successful completion of this course, students will have an understanding of key power system protection performance and operational concepts as well as how these system are implemented within a practical power network.


The course objectives define the student learning outcomes for a course. On completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Explain the principle of operation of components used for implementing protection systems;
  2. Identify the key factors that influence the design of typical protection systems;
  3. Carry out quantitative analysis of the performance of typical protection systems;
  4. Devise protection schemes that are appropriate for particular applications.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Basic concepts: Power system fundamentals; Per unit quantities 3.00
2. Basic Concepts: Power system protection concepts and principles, Symmetrical components; fault calculations 20.00
3. Instrument transformers 15.00
4. Line overcurrent protection 15.00
5. Distance and communications based protection schemes 15.00
6. Protection of power transformers 15.00
7. Bus protection 5.00
8. Protection of reactors and capacitors 5.00
9. Protection of Rotating Machines 7.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

Horowitz, SH & Phadke, AG 2014, Power system relaying, 4th edn, Wiley, Chichester, England.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Gers, JM & Holmes, EJ 2011, Protection of electricity distribution networks, IEE power and energy series, 3rd edn, Institution of Electrical Engineers, Stevenage, UK.
Johns, AT & Salman, SK 1995, Digital protection for power systems, IEE power series, Peregrinus, London.
Kalam, A & Kothari, DP 2010, Power system protection and communications, New Age Science, Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
Phadke, AG 2009, Computer relaying for power systems, 2nd edn, Wiley, Hoboken, NJ.
(Electronic resource.)

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Assessments 30.00
Directed Study 87.00
Examinations 2.00
Private Study 36.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Objectives Assessed Notes
ASSIGNMENT 1 200 20 30 Mar 2020 2
ASSIGNMENT 2 200 20 18 May 2020 3,4
Online Exam 600 60 End S1 1,2 (see note 1)

  1. This will be an open examination. Students will be provided further instruction regarding the exam by their course examiner via StudyDesk. The examination date will be available via UConnect when the official examination timetable has been released.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    There are no attendance requirements for this course. However, it is the students' responsibility to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks or a grade of at least C-. Students do not have to satisfactorily complete each assessment item to be awarded a passing grade in this course. Refer to Statement 4 below for the requirements to receive a passing grade in this course.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    Due to COVID-19 the requirements for S1 2020 are: To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

    Requirements after S1 2020:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must obtain at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course (i.e. the Primary Hurdle), and have satisfied the Secondary Hurdle (Supervised), i.e. the end of semester examination by achieving at least 40% of the weighted marks available for that assessment item.

    Supplementary assessment may be offered where a student has undertaken all of the required summative assessment items and has passed the Primary Hurdle but failed to satisfy the Secondary Hurdle (Supervised), or has satisfied the Secondary Hurdle (Supervised) but failed to achieve a passing Final Grade by 5% or less of the total weighted Marks.

    To be awarded a passing grade for a supplementary assessment item (if applicable), a student must achieve at least 50% of the available marks for the supplementary assessment item as per the Assessment Procedure (point 4.4.2).

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the weighted aggregate of the marks (or grades) obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    Due to COVID-19 the requirements for S1 2020 are: An Open Examination is one in which candidates may have access to any printed or written material and a calculator during the examination.

    Requirements after S1 2020:
    In a Closed Examination candidates are allowed to bring only writing and drawing instruments into the examination.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Due to COVID-19 the requirements for S1 2020 are: The details regarding deferred/supplementary examinations will be communicated at a later date.

    Requirements after S1 2020:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. Students must familiarise themselves with the USQ Assessment Procedures (

  2. Referencing in Assignments must comply with the Harvard (AGPS) referencing system. This system should be used by students to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The Harvard (APGS) style to be used is defined by the USQ library’s referencing guide. These policies can be found at

Date printed 9 October 2020