Virtualising redundancy of power equipment controllers using software-defined networking.

von Tüllenburg, F., Dorfinger, P., Veichtlbauer, A. et al. (2019): Virtualising redundancy of power equipment controllers using software-defined networking. In: Energy Inform 2, 14 (2019)


Power system automation is heavily dependent on the reliable interconnection of power system field equipment and centralised control applications. Particularly important to achieve reliability in automated power systems is the redundant connection of field equipment controllers. Today, the fundamental redundancy management and switch-over processes are handled by the power system control applications itself. This, however, increases the complexity of the control systems and leads to an intersection of concerns. Consequently, the design and the implementation of field equipment controller redundancy is time-consuming and cost-intensive.

In this paper, we propose the implementation of a redundancy virtualisation layer for power system controllers based on software-defined networking (SDN). The goal is to relieve the control applications from managing field level redundancy. Thus, our SDN approach allows to detect gateway failures and to perform transparent switch-overs. This significantly simplifies the configuration of the control application with redundant components and finally leads to more flexible and simplified redundancy design, deployment and operation. Arbitrary redundancy topologies, such as triple-controller-redundancy can be implemented without modifying the control applications.

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