This research paper delves into the capabilities of the IEC 61850 standard in terms of protection systems within the context of the electrical grid. The paper begins with an overview of the general architecture of the grid and the Wide Area Network, which encompasses all stages of power generation, distribution, and consumption. An introduction to the IEC 61850 substation automation standard is then provided, followed by an explanation of the necessary background information, including communication systems and the OSI data model. The study tests the assumption that Ethernet is suitable for real-time communication and fault tolerance in the network [9]. The paper concludes that the IEC 61850 standard is expected to enable seamless communication among devices that can understand its data model, reducing the need for wiring and enabling the use of the bandwidth of the station LAN for GOOSE and GSSE signals. However, the study also reveals that not all vendors and distribution companies are fully familiar with the IEC 61850 standard and as a result, legacy protocols continue to be used in many networks.

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