ECE 6609 PD


This course deals with generation and measurement aspects of high voltages and industrial applications of high voltage engineering. The first part concentrates on generation of high voltage ac, dc and impulse voltages of both switching and lightning surges. Measurements techniques based on different types of potential dividers and spark gaps for ac, dc, and impulse measurements will be covered. The second part deals with generation and measurements of special types of high voltages needed for industrial applications. The course also covers non-destructive measurements like surface and internal discharges, capacitance and loss factor and some optical techniques.


  1. Study the theory of high voltage generation and measurements.
  2. Learn the operation of high voltage power supplies for ac, dc, and impulse voltages.
  3. Learn high voltage measurement techniques and interfacing with low voltage instrumentation.
  4. Get familiar with various applications where high voltage/high field is used.

Course prerequisites

Basic knowledge of circuit analysis and low voltage measurement techniques is required. Familiarity with electrical power system components is useful.

Main topics and delivery plan

  1. Generation of High Voltages.
  2. Methods of measuring high ac, dc, and impulse voltages.
  3. Non-destructive tests.
  4. Partial Discharges.
Lectures Topic Sub-Topics
9 Generation of High Voltages
  • Introduction to High Voltage Technology. Special features of high voltage generating equipment
  • Production of high ac, dc, and impulse voltages for research and testing purposes.
  • Study of wave shaping circuits for generating lightning and switching impulses
9 Methods of measuring high ac, dc, and impulse voltages.
  • Voltage measurements by sphere gaps.
  • Potential dividers for ac and dc voltage measurements. Potential dividers for impulse voltage measurements.
  • Measurements of fast pulses (sub-microsecond rise time).
  • Sources of errors in HV measurements
3 Techniques for electrical non-destructive evaluation of materials
  • Measurements of capacitance and dissipation factor.
  • Bridge methods- Transformer arm ratio bridge and Schearing bridge methods
3 Partial Discharges
  • General remarks on Corona Discharges
  • Equivalent circuits. Measuring circuits.
  • Corona endurance tests and Bridge methods- Partial discharge detection systems.
3 Optical Methods
  • Schlieren and Shadow graphic methods.
  • Kerr and Pockel Effects and their applications in Field measurements.
6 Application of HV Engineering
  • Pulse power application to air pollution cleaning.
  • Pulse power application to biotechnology


  1. High Voltage Engineering- Fundamentals, 2nd Edition, E. Kuffel, W. S. Zaengl, and Kuffel, J. Oxford; Boston: Newnes, 2000.
  2. High Voltage- Measurements, Testing and Design, T. J. Gallagher and A. J. Pearmain, John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1982.
  3. High Voltage Engineering- Theory and Practice, M. Khalifa, Marcel Decker Inc., New York, 1990.
  4. Selected review papers from the field of high voltage application.


For more information, please contact directly the course coordinator Prof Shesha Jayaram.