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Earth resistance measurements in urban contexts: Problems and possible solutions

  • Autori: Colella, P.; Pons, E.; Tommasini, R.; Riva Sanseverino, E.; Di Silvestre, M.; Zizzo, G.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2017
  • Tipologia: Proceedings (TIPOLOGIA NON ATTIVA)
  • OA Link:


Both EN 50522 and IEEE Std. 81 propose the Fall of Potential Method (FPM) to carry out the measurement of the resistance to earth of an Earthing System (ES). However, in urban areas, the recommended distances between the ES and auxiliary electrodes are not easy to respect, due to the presence of buildings and tarmac. Moreover, unknown buried metallic parts, as well as the interconnection among the ESs made by the Distributor System Operator, could modify the earth potential profile of the area, affecting the measurement results. In this paper, the issues that could affect the measurement result if FPM is used in an urban context are presented. A parametric analysis, carried out with Comsol Multiphysics, quantifies the errors due to wrong positioning of the auxiliary electrodes with reference to the ES under test. In addition, a field measurement is described, emphasizing the main aspects that could compromise the results. Finally, practical suggestions to reduce errors are provided.