This paper describes the mechanisms of cascading failure as the cause of severe blackouts. The severe blackouts that occurred in 2003 affecting large metropolitan areas around the globe are first reviewed. Then the probable root cause of each blackout events is identified in order to seek effective corrective preventive solutions. Several of the well-known techniques for cascading failure analysis and correction are discussed and characterized based on their fundamental features. Thereupon a new model power system component is proposed for simulating cascading failure in actual networks.
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