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Electrical Engineering

System Earthing and Protective Earthing in Utilities and Industrial Electrical Networks


Earthing (Grounding) plays a major function in power systems because of the particular influence of earthing on the performance, protection, security and reliability of supply. Electric utilities in different countries apply particular earthing methods depending on the particular nature and requirements of their distribution systems. For proper operation and maintenance of power substations it is important to understand and maintain the correct earthing system in the substation and in industrial electrical networks.

The course is intended to provide theoretical and practical knowledge that enables the participants to have an in-depth understanding of the applications, overall theory and essential issues relevant to system and equipment earthing. At the conclusion of this course, participants should clearly understand the concepts of earthing practices as required by the relevant International Standards and Regulations. The course notes cover a wide range of technical situations and contain many practical examples. The course includes Needs-Based Case-Studies, Task-Based Activities, and Problem Solving Workshop Sessions. Participants can use the skills and knowledge gained in this course to perform testing and preventative maintenance of earthing components and to mitigate earthing problems to ensure safe and reliable operation and longer equipment life.


Delegates will gain a detailed appreciation of the following:

  • Principles, design, testing and maintenance of earthing for systems and equipment
  • Nature of different types of electrical faults related to earthing problems
  • Hazards and safety precautions associated with earthing
  • Electrical safety requirements and procedures
  • Understanding of electrical fault protection systems
  • Practices to mitigate earthing problems in electrical networks and industrial installations
  • Understanding damage due to lightning and lightning protection
  • Implementing mitigation techniques to solve earthing problems
  • Protecting computers and it equipment systems against malfunction and damage caused by earthing problems
  • Identifying factors that can lead to malfunction or failure of equipment and systems due to incorrect earthing
  • Designing, testing and maintaining the earthing grid

Target Audience

Designers, Engineers, and Technicians from Distribution Companies and Power Utilities, Engineering Professionals in Electricity Supply Industry, Petrochemical Companies, Buildings and Service Professionals who have to deal with the aspect of electrical and industrial power system protection, control and operation.

Participants need no specific requirements other than a good understanding of electricity and magnetism and some relevant experience.


Electrical Engineering Outline

The course covers the following topics:

Introduction, General Principles, and Requirements of Earthing

  • Course overview, Course Outcomes, methodology, expectations, and input from participants (experience and current responsibilities)
  • Overview of power systems and components
  • The distribution system and network configurations
  • Basic safety requirements and devices in power distribution
  • Electrical hazards
  • Electrical shock
  • Electrical fires
  • Short revision of electrical principles, definitions, glossary, and common terms
  • Reasons for earthing, system earthing, equipment earthing
  • Overview: of common causes of power equipment failure
  • Work in the vicinity of electric and magnetic fields
  • Approach to HV electrical apparatus
  • Occupational health and safety (OH and S) requirements
  • Installation safety requirements and regulations
  • Safety-related maintenance and environmental considerations
  • Safety requirements for special equipment
  • Personal protective equipment

Theory and Principles of Earthing

  • Earthing principles, basic requirements
  • System earthing, equipment earthing, safety earth, signal earth
  • Functional earth layout, practical low-frequency earthing
  • Hardware earthing
  • Earth loops, common impedance coupling
  • Course Outcomes of site earthing, categories of earthing
  • Neutral earthing, protective earth
  • Coordinating earthing within a control system
  • The well-earthed building, earthing coordination,
  • Importance of low resistance earthing
  • Earthing electrodes
  • Trench earth VS driven rods Vs foundation reinforcing steel
  • Steps for designing earthing systems for structures

Equipment Earthing and Electromagnetic Shielding

  • Basic principles
  • Circuit return coupling
  • Earth plane induced feedback
  • Interference coupling
  • Earthing practices for low-frequency equipment
  • Earthing practices for equipment containing both low frequency and high frequency
  • Basic shielding principles
  • Definition of protection zones
  • Shield impedance
  • Low-frequency shielding
  • High-frequency shielding
  • Shielding materials
  • Shield design criteria
  • Cables shielding
  • Importance of good bonding recommended practices for effective bonding

Power Substation Earthing and Safety Requirements

  • Purpose of substation earthing
  • MV and LV network arrangements
  • Earth potential rise
  • Protective conductors
  • Earth electrodes
  • Electrode resistance
  • Connection of services
  • Grid and mesh potentials
  • Potential gradient areas of common types of electrodes
  • Multiple electrodes
  • Measurement of soil resistance and electrode resistance
  • Protective earthing devices
  • Earth leakage circuit breakers
  • Nature and effects of electric shock
  • Protection against electric shock
  • Protection against overcurrent and short-circuit current
  • Common electric hazards
  • High voltage areas
  • Overloaded circuits
  • Damaged cords, bare connectors
  • Long and tall objects
  • Mobile equipment
  • Standing water
  • Switching and tagging
  • Protecting workers from arcs
  • Safety testing procedures
  • Unintentional energizing of circuits
  • Field scenario: switching and tagging, field testing and grounding

Earthing for Protection against Lightning and Electrostatic Discharge

  • Physics of lightning
  • Electrical surges due to lightning
  • Lightning current waveform
  • Voltage and current surges due to lightning
  • Direct and indirect surges due to lightning strikes
  • Induced surges due to adjacent lightning strikes
  • Avoiding side flashes
  • Effect of earth impedance
  • Lightning damage
  • Lightning protection techniques for electricity supply
  • Lightning protection of computer and communication equipment and systems
  • Lightning protection for buildings
  • Protection against electrostatic discharges  
  • Damage to equipment and systems
  • Protective techniques and devices


Ref Location From To Cost
EE10 Kuwait 6-9-2020 10-9-2020