National Field Services to Present at Relay Conference


In keeping with our role as a thought leader in the electrical testing industry, our own Eric Beckman, Vice President of Operations, will present a paper he co-authored, "Advancements in Technology and the Challenges Posed to Electrical Testing of Protective Relays and Controls," at this year's Relay Conference at Texas A&M. The 69th Annual Conference for Protective Relay Engineers will be held from April 4 through April 7.

Insights from Our Experts

Eric is a registered professional engineer in Texas and Oklahoma and a Level 4 NETA technician. He has been in the electrical testing industry for 13 years. Along with Eric, the paper was co-authored by Tyler DeBey, Project Manager, and Ryan Matthews, Project Manager.

Mark Your Calendar

We hope to see you at the conference and at Eric's talk. Here are the details:

Relay Conference Testing Session
Wednesday, April 6
Memorial Student Center 2406B
Advancements in Technology and the Challenges Posed to Electrical Testing of Protective Relays and Controls
Eric Beckman, National Field Services

Be sure to swing by booth 23 to see us as well!

Spoiler Alert!

Want a preview? Here's the Abstract of Eric's talk.

As newer microprocessor based protective relays eliminate wiring controls and replace them with digital logic, and test equipment automation is refined and becomes more user friendly, the assumption would be that it is becoming easier to electrically test and commission protective relays and controls. This is true if all of the following conditions are true: the relay settings and logic are flawless, the relay testing software is perfect, and everything works as expected. Of course if this was the case then we would not need to test protective relays or controls.

When we talk about modern microprocessor protective relays, also known as "Intelligent Electronic Devices (IED's)," they are no longer simply protective relays. These devices are now the heart of the power system controls, and in several instances, an integral part of the telemetry and annunciation.

These devices have replaced large quantities of wiring, relays, switches, and in many cases multiple panels of indicators and controls with one black box. Modern test equipment no longer has panel controls; the equipment is entirely operated with laptop computers and prepackaged programs and subroutines.


There seems to be a trend that we need less knowledge and education to perform this critical function, since the automation does most of the thinking. There can be nothing further from the truth. The engineer/engineering technician performing this critical function must be better educated and have a sound understanding of both power and computer science. Schematics are more simplified but now must be augmented with logic drawings.

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