Professional Certificate of Competency in Electrical Power System Protection

Course at a Glance

Course Name - Professional Certificate of Competency in Electrical Power System Protection

Course Code - CPS

Qualification - Professional Development

Duration - 3 Months

CEU/CPD* - on enquiry

*CEU/CPD hours vary according to your professional body.

Contact a Course Advisor



  • Understand the fundamentals of electrical power protection and applications
  • Recognize the different fault types
  • Perform simple fault and design calculations
  • Understand protection system components
  • Perform simple relay settings
  • Choose appropriate protective devices for different equipment
  • Interpret the protection systems existing in your plant, understand their functions, detect any shortcoming and explain any undesired or uncoordinated relay operation
  • Make more informed decisions on electrical power system protection
  • Significantly improve the safety of your site 


The next intake starts February 26, 2018.

Do not delay your opportunity to join this course. Contact us for more information and to apply.

Registrations closing February 19, 2018.

EIT Professional Certificate of Competency in Electrical Power System Protection endorsed by the International Society of Automation (ISA)








Any power system is prone to 'faults' (also called short-circuits), which occur mostly as a result of insulation failure and sometimes due to external causes. When a fault occurs, the normal functioning of the system gets disturbed. The high current resulting from a fault can stress the electrical conductors and connected equipment thermally and electro-dynamically. Arcs at the fault point can cause dangerous or even fatal burn injuries to operating and maintenance workers in the vicinity. Faults involving one phase and ground give rise to high 'touch' and 'step' voltages posing danger of electrocution to personnel working nearby. It is therefore necessary to detect and clear any fault quickly. The first device used in early electrical systems was the fuse, which acted both as the sensor and the interrupting device. With larger systems, separate devices became necessary to sense and interrupt fault currents. In the beginning these functions were combined in a single assembly; a circuit breaker with in-built releases.

This practice is still prevalent in low voltage systems. In both high systems and low voltage systems of higher capacities, the sensing is done by more sophisticated devices called relays. Relays were initially electro-mechanical devices but static relays and more recently digital relays have become the norm. With more complex systems, it is necessary to detect the point of fault precisely and trip only those sections affected by the fault while the rest of the system can continue to function normally. In the event of the nearest circuit breaker failing to operate, the next breaker in the upstream (feeding) side has to be tripped as a 'back up' measure. Another requirement is to minimise the time for which a fault remains in the circuit; this is necessary to reduce equipment damage and the danger to operating personnel.

These requirements necessitate different forms of relaying apart from the simple current sensing relays. Equipment such as generators, transformers and motors also need special forms of protection characterised by their design and operating principles.

This course will explain all of these points in detail and provide you with the skills and knowledge necessary to calculate fault currents, select relays and associated instrument transformers appropriate to each typical system or equipment. You will also learn how to adjust the setting of the relays so that the relays closest to the fault will operate and clear the fault faster than the backup devices.

Course Outline

MODULE 1: Power System Overview

Electrical distribution system
Reading single line diagrams
LV, MV AND HV equipment
Function and types of electrical switchgear
Basic circuit breaker design

MODULE 2: Basics of Power System Protection

Need for protective apparatus
Basic requirements and components

MODULE 3: Types of Faults and Short Circuit Current Calculations

The development of simple distribution systems
Faults-types, effects and calculations
Equivalent diagrams for reduction of system impedance
Calculation of short circuit MVA
Unbalanced faults and earth faults
Symmetrical components

MODULE 4: System Earthing and Earth Fault Current

Phase and earth faults
Comparison of earthing methods
Protective earthing
Effect of electric shock on human beings
Sensitive earth leakage protection
System classification

MODULE 5: Fuses and Circuit Breakers with Builtin Protection

Fuse operating characteristics, ratings and selection
Energy 'let through'
General rules of thumb
Circuit breakers - types, purpose and arc quenching
Behavior under fault conditions
Protective relay-circuit breaker combination
Circuit breakers with in-built protection
Conventional and electronic releases

MODULE 6: Instrument Transformers Transformer ratio and errors of ratio and phase angle

'Class' of instrument transformers
Voltage and current transformers

MODULE 7: Relays and Auxiliary Power Equipment

Principle of construction and operation of protective relays
Special focus on IDMTL relays
Factors influencing choice of plug setting
The new era in protection - microprocessor, static and traditional
Universal microprocessor overcurrent relay
Technical features of a modern microprocessor relay
Future of protection for distribution systems
The era of the IED
Substation automation
Communication capability
Need for reliable auxiliary power for protection systems
Batteries and battery chargers
Trip circuit supervision
Why breakers and contactors fail to trip
Capacity storage trip units

MODULE 8: Protection Grading and Relay Coordination

Protection design parameters on MV and LV networks
Coordination - basis of selectivity
Current, time and earth fault grading
Time-current grading
Grading through IDMT protection relay
Coordination between secondary and primary circuits of transformers
Current transformers - coordination
Importance of settings and coordination curves

MODULE 9: Unit Protection and Applications

Protective relay systems
Main, unit and back-up protection
Methods of obtaining selectivity
Differential protection
Machine, transformer and switchgear differential protection
Feeder pilot-wire protection
Time taken to clear faults
Unit protection systems - recommendations and advantages

MODULE 10: Protection of Feeders and Lines

Over current and earth fault protection
Application of DMT/IDMT protections for radial feeders
Directional over current relays in line protection
DMT and IDMT schemes applied to large systems
Unit and impedance protection of lines
Use of carrier signals in line protections
Transient faults and use of auto reclosing as a means of reducing outage time
Auto-reclosing in circuits with customer-owned generation
Auto-reclosing relays for transmission and distribution lines

MODULE 11: Protection of Transformers

Winding polarity
Transformer connections and magnetizing characteristics
In-rush current
Neutral earthing
On-load tap changers
Mismatch of current transformers
Types of faults
Differential protection
Restricted earth fault
HV overcurrent
Protection by gas sensing and pressure detection

MODULE 12: Protection of Rotating Machinery

Motor protection basics
Transient and steady state temperature rise
Thermal time constant
Motor current during start and stall conditions
Stalling of motors
Unbalanced supply voltages and rotor failures
Electrical faults in stator windings earth fault phase-phase faults
Typical protective settings for motors
An introduction to generator protection

Learning and Teaching

Benefits of eLearning to Students

  • Cost effective: no travel or accommodation necessary
  • Interactive: live, interactive sessions let you communicate with your instructor and fellow students
  • Flexible: short interactive sessions over the Internet which you can attend from your home or office. Learn while you earn!
  • Practical: perform exercises by remotely accessing our labs and simulation software
  • Expert instructors: instructors have extensive industry experience; they are not just 'academics'
  • No geographical limits: learn from any location, all you need is an Internet connection
  • Constant support: from your instructor(s) and a dedicated Course Coordinator for the complete duration of the course
  • International insight: interact and network with participants from around the globe and gain valuable insight into international practice 

Benefits of eLearning to Employers

  • Lower training costs: no travel or accommodation necessary
  • Less downtime: short webinars (60-90 minutes) and flexible training methods means less time away from work
  • Retain employees: keep staff who may be considering a qualification as full time study
  • Increase efficiency: improve your engineering or technical employees’ skills and knowledge
  • International insight: students will have access to internationally based professional instructors and students


How Does it Work?

EIT eLearning courses involve a combination of live, interactive sessions over the Internet with a professional instructor, set readings, and assignments. The courses include simulation software and remote laboratory applications to let you put theory to practice, and provide you with constant support from a dedicated Course Coordinator.

Practical Exercises and Remote Laboratories

As part of the groundbreaking new way of teaching, our online engineering courses use a series of remote laboratories (labs) and simulation software, to facilitate your learning and to test the knowledge you gain during your course. These involve complete working labs set up at various locations of the world into which you will be able to log to and proceed through the various practical sessions.

These will be supplemented by simulation software, running either remotely or on your computer, to ensure you gain the requisite hands-on experience. No one can learn much solely from lectures, the labs and simulation software are designed to increase the absorption of the materials and to give you a practical orientation of the learning experience. All this will give you a solid, practical exposure to the key principles covered and will ensure that you obtain maximum benefit from your course.


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In Company Online Training Solutions

Special class groups can be arranged on request to match your own schedule. If you have a large number of staff who should complete any of our programs, read more about EIT's In Company Online Training HERE and contact us to assist you further.



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Electrical Power System Protection EIT course

Fee Information

Course Fees

What are the fees for my country?

The Engineering Institute of Technology (EIT) provides distance education to students located all around the world – it is one of the very few truly global training institutes. Course fees are paid in a currency that is determined by the student’s location. We aim to give you a rapid response regarding course fees that are relevant to your individual circumstances.

We understand that cost is a major consideration before a student begins to study. For a rapid reply to your query regarding courses fees and payment options, please contact a Course Advisor in your region via the below button and we will respond within two (2) business days.

Enquire abut our online engineering course fees


EIT Certificate Course Payment Information

Please contact us with your location for certificate fees in the relevant currency. Full payment is required between two (2) and four (4) weeks before the course starts.

Certificate fees include:

  • All live webinars with a professional instructor
  • Four (4) technical manuals (as searchable eBooks)
  • Course materials
  • Software
  • Assignments, and
  • Ongoing support from a dedicated Course Coordinator

All you need to participate is an Internet connection, a computer, speakers and, if possible, a microphone.


Fee concessions may apply for multiple bookings on our certificate courses.

For a rapid reply to your query regarding courses fees and payment options, please contact us and we will respond within two (2) business days.

Enquire abut our online engineering course fees 

Related Courses

Other courses available in EIT's School of Electrical Engineering

Accredited Postgraduate Programs

  1. Master of Engineering (Electrical Systems) II
  2. Graduate Certificate of Renewable Energy Technologies I

Accredited Diploma and Advanced Diploma Programs

  1. Advanced Diploma of Applied Electrical Engineering (Electrical Systems) I
  2. Advanced Diploma of Applied Electrical Engineering (Power Industry) I
  3. Advanced Diploma of Electrical and Instrumentation (E & I) Engineering for Oil and Gas Facilities I
  4. Advanced Diploma of Electrical and Instrumentation (E & I) Engineering for Mining I
  5. Diploma and Advanced Diploma of ESI UET50212 and UET60212 I

Professional Development Series

  1. Professional Certificate of Competency in Best Practice in Electrical Engineering in Mining, Building, Industry and Utilities
  2. Professional Certificate of Competency in Circuit Breakers, Switchgear and Power Transformers – Safe operation and Maintenance
  3. Professional Certificate of Competency in Arc Flash Protection
  4. Professional Certificate of Competency in Electrical Power System Fundamentals for Non-Electrical Engineers
  5. Professional Certificate of Competency in Operation and Maintenance of Diesel Power Generating Plants
  6. Professional Certificate of Competency in Power Distribution
  7. Professional Certificate of Competency in AS3000:2007 Electrical Wiring Rules (Australia and New Zealand only)

There is scarcely an aspect of modern life that is not dependent on electrical energy. It is used in such varied activities as cooling, heating, transport, manufacturing, production, communications, minerals processing and water transfer. Engineers and technicians with an electrical diploma find employment in fields as diverse as generation, transmission, distribution and the eventual application of electrical energy in machinery. Due to the challenges of climate change there is also a vital interest in the use and storage of renewable and sustainable energy. The demand for well trained electrical professionals is assured with rapid expansion of the electricity supply in the developing world, the addition of the yet-to-be-constructed smart grid, and our growing dependency upon electricity supply of high integrity.

Electrical engineering skills and knowledge are also critical in a wide range of industries ranging from oil and gas, water utilities, process plants, mining, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and defence. The Engineering Institute of Technology (EIT) provides electrical engineering courses online for engineers and technicians of all levels and from all types of industry, be it mining, oil and gas or instrumentation. The Advanced Diplomas in Electrical Engineering cover a large range of topics and are suited to anyone needing an intensive and practical look at all facets of electrical engineering. The short courses that form part of EIT's professional development series are designed to provide students with critical knowledge and practical tools that can be immediately applied to the workplace. They are ideal to up-skill and/or cross-skill in a particular area or technology.

Key subjects in the EIT School of Electrical Engineering include: power generation, transmission, distribution, rotating machinery, power electronics, earthing and safety regulations, electrical documentation and drawings, AC and DC machines, circuit breakers, transformers, energy efficiency, earthing (or grounding) and lightning, power systems protection, DC and AC emergency power supplies, electrical wiring regulations, high voltage supplies, and power quality.


I: Vocational Education & Training (VET) program

II: Higher Education program

Frequently Asked Questions

Here is what some of our past students have said about this course:

 "The course outline and presentation was very good. It started at the basics and graduated to the more complex. The course, even though online, requires your full attention. This course actually shows me that online courses are just as effective as face to face courses. I wil surely like to do more courses with the EIT" K. Adegoke

"I have very much enjoyed the course.  It helps me to understand why we have electrical protection and the types of protection needed" M. Futengim

"e-learning fits well with my busy work schedule and home life" C. Brady

"It's hard to beat training in the same room as the instructor - but e-learning offers fantastic flexibility to people who cannot afford to take time off work for training. The course instructor was absolutely top class and there was never even a hint of a gap in his knowledge of the subject matter" S. Tarrant

"I found this course very informative, and thoroughly enjoyed it.   Great communication throughout and also very helpful when I needed help" R. Patrick

"The course really helped me understand the basic concepts related to protection system" S. Sridhara


Read more amazing student stories here.

You can also click here to view our Frequently Asked Questions.