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Master Thesis Defense - November 27, 2018: Network and System Management Using IEC 62351-7 in IEC 61850 Substations: Design and Implementation

November 23, 2018


Chantale Robillard

Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at 3:00 p.m.
Room EV002.309

You are invited to attend the following M.A.Sc. (Information Systems Security) thesis examination.

Examining Committee

Dr. J. Yan, Chair
Dr. M. Debbabi, Supervisor
Dr. A. Hanna, Co-Supervisor
Dr. C. Assi, CIISE Examiner
Dr. Y. Liu, External Examiner (ECE)



Substations are a prime target for threat agents aiming to disrupt the power grid’s operation. With the advent of the smart grid, the power infrastructure is increasingly being coupled with an Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) infrastructure needed to manage it, exposing it to potential cyberattacks. In order to secure the smart grid, the IEC 62351 specifies how to provide cybersecurity to such an environment. Among its specifications, IEC 62351-7 states to use Network and System Management (NSM) to monitor and manage the operation of power systems.

In this research, we aim to design, implement, and study NSM in a digital substation as per the specifications of IEC 62351-7. The substation is one that conforms to the IEC 61850 standard, which defines how to design a substation leveraging ICT. Our contributions are as follows. We contribute to the design and implementation of NSM in a smart grid security co-simulation testbed. We design a methodology to elaborate cyberattacks targeting IEC 61850 substations specifically. We elaborate detection algorithms that leverage the NSM Data Objects (NSM DOs) of IEC 62351-7 to detect the attacks designed using our method. We validate these experimentally using our testbed. From this work, we can provide an initial assessment of NSM within the context of digital substations.

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