|Title||Resolving the reactive power question|
|Publication Type||Conference Paper|
|Year of Publication||2019|
|Authors||Harold Kirkham, Alexander Emanuel, Mihaela Albu, David Laverty|
|Conference Name||2019 IEEE International Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference (I2MTC)|
|Conference Location||Auckland, New Zealand|
The definition and measurement of reactive power has been the subject of a sometimes acrimonious debate. In this paper, a number of factors leading to the present situation are exposed by reviewing the history of the matter. The contributions of Poynting (1884), Steinmetz (1892), Lyon (1920) and Budeanu (1927) are examined. It is shown that much of the debate about reactive power is founded on two fundamental and yet unrecognized mistakes made over a hundred years ago. Further debate is unwarranted because of those early mistakes, and because in the light of modern measurement theory, the character and meaning of the measurement is changed. Reactive power has been and continues to be a useful concept, its definition matters: the automation of the power system demands a solution. Some suggestions are offered.