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POWER-GRID.

COM : SEPTEMBER 2017

OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF
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Teamwork Helps Utilities Excel at Customer Service

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21 An Affinity for Proper Connections
26 Energy Storages Sweet Spot

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SEPTEMBER 2017 VOLUME 22.09

10 Wheel Power
What does victory look like for electric utility fleet managers? Being
obsessed with safety, fuel options, environmental concerns and
mechanical issues are only a few of the challenges to winning.
By Rod Walton, Senior Editor

18 The Next Nest


When Nest first launched in 2010, the idea that a customermuch
less droves of themwould pay $250 for a thermostat was a foreign
concept at best. Now connected technologies are the future.

14
By Mike Kaplan, Ecova

21 An Affinity for Proper Connections


Accurate transformer and phase connectivity can ensure efficiency.
By Robert Sonderegger, Itron

24 Recognizing a Tiger
Cats and tigers are different, no doubt, but you must understand and
Teamwork Matters process to compare and contrast. The same is true of machine learning.
By CJ Parisi and Siri Varada, ABB Enterprise Software
In a mission to provide better customer service
in the Fresno, California, service district, Pacific
Gas & Electric (PG&E), ACRT Inc. and Trees 26 Energy Storages Sweet Spot
Inc. created a plan that has helped enhance A MW-scale energy storage system (ESS) can be vital to address
unpredictability in renewable generation. The challenge, however, is
overall service to its customer base. sizing the ESS for maximum operational and financial benefit.
By Pat Paternostro, ARCT; Joe Stewart, By Michael Lippert, Saft
PG&E; Tony Carlos, Trees Inc.
30 Taking Charge: Start Now
From the Editor 4 Black start milestone in California shows potential of energy storage to
keep the grid humming without fail.
Notes 5 By Rod Walton, Senior Editor

Products 34
31 Microgrids
Calendar/Ad Index 35 Some consider them a threat to revenues, but are microgrids a mega-
opportunity for electric utilities?
Parting Thoughts 36 By Tom Rooney and Bill Moran, TRC Companies

PowerGrid International (ISSN 1547-6723). of back issues are also available on microfilm International is a registered trademark. er list available to carefully screened compa-
PowerGrid International is published 12x times and microfiche from University Microfilm, a PennWell Corporation 2017. All rights re- nies that offer products and services that may
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2 | September 2017
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1709pg_2 2 9/6/17 8:52 AM


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FROM THE EDITOR EDITOR IN CHIEF
TERESA HANSEN

Whats Old Is New Again SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, NORTH AMERICAN


POWER GENERATION GROUP
Ive mentioned before that in addition to being editor in chief to POWERGRID Richard Baker
International, I also hold that title on Electric Light & Power, an industry pub-
EDITOR IN CHIEF
lication that has been around for more than 95 years. We have a library here Teresa Hansen
in the corporate office that includes every print issue of Electric Light & Power 918.831.9504 teresah@pennwell.com

going back to the first issue of 1922. From time to time, someone will request SENIOR EDITOR
Rod Walton
a copy of an article or advertisement from one of those old issues. Im always 918.831.9177 rwalton@pennwell.com
interested and entertained when I look through them.
ONLINE/ASSOCIATE EDITOR
I recently looked through some of the issues that were published in 1946 Jeff Postelwait
918.831.9114 jeffp@pennwell.com
through 1948. This was a time when much of the U.S., especially in rural
areas, was being electrified and many new appliances and machines were being CONTRIBUTING EDITOR
TransmissionHub Senior Analyst Corina Rivera-Linares
introduced that made life easier for those who were fortunate enough to have
electricity in their homes. DESIGNER II
Heather Skeith
Much of the content in these issues focused on modern technologies and 918.831.9176 heathers@pennwell.com

equipment that made infrastructure installation easier and safer, improved SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT-AUDIENCE
DEVELOPMENT & MARKETING
power plant construction and performance, made the electric gird safer and June Griffin
more reliable and improved the working conditions of employees in the field.
AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT MANAGER
A portion of it, however, touted the benefits of modern technologies and equip- Linda Thomas
918.832.9254 lindat@pennwell.com
ment fueled by electricity.
Many feature articles and advertisements introduced new electric irons, refrig- BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR
Sara Jones
erators, washing machines and other appliances and machines that made life 918.831.9738 sjones@pennwell.com
easier for housewives and home owners. In 1946, one issue of the magazine
focused almost solely on streetlights and the role they would play in cities of the
future. Even earlier, in the 1920s, utilities sold electric lighting, not electricity,
PENNWELL CORPORATION
and as late as in the 1950s and 1960s, utilities set up showrooms to feature new 1421 S. Sheridan Road, Tulsa, OK 74112
PO Box 1260, Tulsa OK 74101
all-electric kitchen appliances. Phone 918.835.3161 Fax 918.831.9834
pgi@pennwell.com
Such appliances and equipment are commonplace now and its hard for www.pennwell.com
most of us to imagine a world without them. In the early to mid-20th century,
PENNWELL CORP. IN EUROPE
however, they were new, unimagined technologies and electricity providers PennWell International Limited
The Water Tower, Gunpowder Mill
were promoting them to their customers. During this time, utilities werent pro- Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 1BN, United Kingdom
phone +44.1992.656600
moting kilowatt hours, they were selling convenience and modern technologies fax +44.1992.656700
that improved customers lives. pennwelluk@pennwell.com

When did they stop doing this? Why did they stop? For the last several CHAIRMAN Robert F. Biolchini
decades, utility customers have bought modern conveniences and technologies VICE CHAIRMAN Frank T. Lauinger
PRESIDENT AND CHIEF
powered by electricity from other companies. Electric utilities have been OK with EXECUTIVE OFFICER Mark C. Wilmoth
it. But, its time for them to dig out their old playbook and take a refresher course EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT, CORPORATE
DEVELOPMENT AND STRATEGY Jayne A. Gilsinger
on offering customers the modern conveniences made possible by electricity. SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, FINANCE AND
On page 18, youll see an article by Mike Kaplan of Ecova titled The Next Nest. CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Brian Conway

In it he talks about doing just that. On page 31, Tom Rooney and Bill Moran of TRC SUBSCRIBER SERVICE
P.O. Box 47570, Plymouth, MN 55447
Companies explain how microgrids are a mega-opportunity for electric utilities. Phone 1-800-869-6882
You might think approaching customers and offering them modern technologies PGRID@kmpsgroup.com

and mega-opportunities is a new concept for utilities. But, I can promise you it isnt. POWERGRID International is the
official publication of

4 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_4 4 9/6/17 8:52 AM


NOTES

DUKE COMMENCING SMART METER ROLLOUT IN KENTUCKY


Duke Energy Kentucky launched its May. Duke has about 143,000 electric Customers with smart meters will have
smart meter deployment program last customers in five Kentucky counties. the opportunity to pick billing due dates
month, bringing new digital technology The new meters offer several enhanced and receive alerts that will guide their
to customers in northern Kentucky. services that will provide customers with monthly budgeting and help them man-
The Kentucky Public Service Commission more control over their energy use as age their personal energy lifestyle.
approved the smart meter rollout in well as tailored bill payment options. Customers have told us they want
more timely access to their energy usage
information, and bringing these smart
meters to Kentucky is a way for us
to meet those expectations, said Jim
Henning, president, Duke Energy Ohio
and Kentucky. We know our customers
also want more control over their energy
usage, their utility bills and tools to help
them make smart energy choices to best
fit their needs.
Deployment will take approximately
18 months.

S&C ELECTRIC, AMEREN PULL OFF ISLANDING TEST ON ILLINOIS MICROGRID


Ameren Corp. and S&C Electric Co. automatically coordinating resources and energy in these situations.
conducted a successful 24-hour island- ensuring power never faltered. At the Ameren microgrid, when the
ing test at the recently deployed Ameren Upon conclusion of the 24-hour test, generation exceeds the load, the excess
microgrid in Champaign, Illinois. The the microgrid successfully moved back powers the battery. With a rotating
microgrid has been operational since into grid-connected mode without any machine, the influx of generation would
May and can provide a transition from loss of power for end users. have caused the system to trip due to
grid-connected to island mode. We have one of the few microgrids penetration limits.
The test focused on the 50 kW micro- in the world that operates at utility-scale
grid at the site, which powers an Ameren voltages and can seamlessly transition
research facility. The complete microgrid from grid-connected to islanded mode,
includes 225 kW of renewable generation said Ron Pate, senior vice president,
(PV solar and wind) and 250 kW/500 operations and technical services at
kWh of battery energy storage. Ameren Illinois. This successful test pro-
The August test began with the bat- vided tangible proof that the system can When designing this microgrid, we
terys state of charge at 97 percent capac- accomplish what it was designed to do. were confident that the seamless tran-
ity. Once the battery was depleted to 90 The microgrid isnt theoretical and our sition and the ability to run solely on
percent capacity, solar and wind genera- tests dont need to be lab simulations. renewable generation would be two of the
tion kicked in, simultaneously carrying During the test, the Ameren microgrid biggest features to this system, said David
the load and charging the battery. functioned on 100 percent renewable Chiesa, senior director, business develop-
This pattern continued throughout the energy throughout the day. Many micro- ment at S&C. Microgrids are becoming
day, never letting the battery fall lower than grids of this scale need to rely on rotating more commonplace on the grid, and this
88 percent capacity. In short, the microgrid machines or generators, which prevent test continues to prove how impactful
functioned without any human interaction, 100 percent penetration of renewable they can be for energy users.

September 2017 | 5
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_5 5 9/6/17 8:53 AM


NOTES

SMUD, GRIDX TEAM UP ON NEW TIME-OF-DAY BILLING TOOL


design, promote and operate new energy specific customers bills on a new rate. It will
products and programs. also allow the CSR to discuss various energy
Under a traditional tiered rate system, use scenarios with the customer and calcu-
bills are calculated based on the volume of late how his or her bill will be impacted by
energy customers use. Under time-of-day shifting energy use to different time periods,
rates, when customers use energy will be adding or removing programs, deploying
just as important as how much they use. rooftop solar, adding an electric vehicle or
After SMUD transitions all customers possibly switching to SMUDs fixed rate
to time-of-day plans by the end of 2019, option. The bill scenarios are personalized
about 44 percent of customers will pay to each customer and calculated in real time
less over the course of a year than they while customers are on the phone.
Sacramento Municipal Utility District do under the current system, even if they As we transition our customers to
(SMUD) and GridX Inc. will partner to make no changes to their energy use. About time-of-day rates, we want to help them
roll out a new bill scenario analysis tool 49 percent of customers will pay about $2 learn as much as possible about how
that will allow SMUDs customer service more per month on average under the new their bill may be impacted and what they
representatives (CSRs) to help customers plan, and about 8 percent will pay about can do to control their energy costs, said
learn more about how the transition to $6.80 more per month. If these customers Nicole Howard, SMUDs chief customer
time-of-day rates will impact their bills. adjust when they use energy, they may be officer. By working with GridX, well be
GridX is a provider of big data billing able to reduce their bills and save money able to roll out an accurate, responsive
and billing quality analytics solutions for on a time-of-day plan. tool that will allow us to provide specific
energy companies using smart grid infra- The new bill scenario analysis tool will numbers to our customers so they can
structure. Its technology enables utilities to allow a SMUD CSR to accurately calculate a make informed choices.

DOE ALLOCATES $900,000 TOWARD UNIVERSITY GRID RESEARCH


The U.S. Department of Energys (DOEs) A Multistage Stochastic Transmission future generation choices will be located.
Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Expansion Algorithm for Wide-area Planning DOE is investing $174,061 for the proj-
Reliability will allocate $900,000 in ear- under Uncertainty. The team will focus on ect, while the cost share will be $54,258.
ly-stage research on risk and uncertainty developing a novel computational method Final award amounts for all projects are
within the power system. for solving uncertainty in transmission plans subject to negotiation.
The funding will help three universities for a large power system network.
do work on reliability issues. The invest- Penn State researchers will develop algo- UNIVERSITY OF UTAH
ment is part of the Energy Departments rithms, software tools and demonstration At the University of Utah, researchers will
Grid Modernization Initiative. The three tests on working systems such as Western use the DOE funds to develop models for
recipients are Penn State University, the Interconnection or PJM Interconnection. stochastic continuous-time unit commit-
University of Utah and Virginia Tech. The project is expected to result in a dra- ment (UC) in wholesale market operations.
matic reduction in the computation time The proposed UC will accurately model
PENN STATE UNIVERSITY required for solving challenges for trans- the continuous-time variations of load and
Penn State Universitys effort is called mission lines when its not known where renewable energy sources (RES), and effi-
ciently deploy the ramping capability of
flexible resources to compensate the sources
of variability and uncertainty in markets
all while respecting the continuous-time
flow constraints of transmission networks.
The approach will model the uncertainty
6 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_6 6 9/6/17 8:53 AM


BY ROD WALTON, SENIOR EDITOR

ELECTRIC POWER SECTOR ACCOUNTS FOR


20 PERCENT OF AMERICAN GDP, REPORT SAYS
Nearly 2.7 million Americans work investments exceeded $135 billiona
directly for the electric power industry level of investment that is more than twice traditional revenue sources. A Washington
while roughly 5 percent of the nations jobs what it was a decade ago, the report State University Energy Program report from
are linked to the sector somehow, accord- says. These investments benefit customers 2013 estimated that the sector will need to
ing to a new report released in August. and support jobs dedicated to building invest about $1.5 trillion on upgrading grid
The electric power industry altogether smarter energy infrastructure and to cre- infrastructure through 2030.
contributes about $880 billion annually ating a cleaner generation fleet. Many of Engineers, lineworkers, plant and
to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), the individuals who support and build field operators and technicians make up
itself about 5 percent of the total national infrastructure projects are represented by about 44 percent of the energy power
GDP, reads the findings from consulting organized labor. sector workforce, according to 2015 data
firm M.J. Bradley & Associates report, In 2015, the median income for elec- used in the report. Engineers typically
Powering America: The Economic and tric power industry jobs hovered around make close to $44 per hour.
Workforce Contributions of the U.S. $73,000twice the national median. In addition to those considered com-
Electric Power Industry. Benefits lifted that total closer to $100,000, pany direct workers, the sector also
The tally was conducted for the Edison according to the Bradley report. Many of employs 1.7 million contractors and sup-
Electric Institute, the American Public those employees have been working for their ply chain employees directly or induced
Power Association and the National companies 15 years or longer, indicating job from spending, according to the report.
Rural Electric Cooperative Association. stability in the ever-changing economy.
Results indicate that the electric power More growth poten-
sector also spends deeply on infrastruc- tial and financial chal- WHATS ALL THE
ture and at a quickening pace. lenges are on the way,
In 2016, the industrys capital despite falling demand for COMMOTION ABOUT ?
In what may be a record, in 4 years
of RES and load forecast by continuous-time power trajectory realization Peter Guske PT has effectively
scenarios, according to the DOE release. The results could help compen- trained over 16,000 people from the
sate for real-time energy imbalance and ramping requirements, as well
desk-bound worker to heavy labor
as enable competitive integration of energy storage devices and
demand response.
by reducing the incidence of...
The federal investment is $357,339, with an additional cost-share the 3 most expensive health/safety issues for all
of $92,552. employers: 1)Back/Neck Injuries, 2)Diabetes/Fatigue
and 3)Heart Disease, with the only training course in the
VIRGINIA TECH nation which actually demonstrates to you how you can
The Virginia Tech project will focus on developing production costing put your own back, back in, when you put your back
tools that can consider the variable nature of renewable energy sources and out using the new, myth-shattering, uniquely-effective,
treat them as generation candidates in a power system expansion plan. The results-oriented techniques of The Back Saver System.
object is to develop a probability-based model for effective load carrying See astonishing videos
capacity and cost-effective integration of renewables into the power grid. from our clients
The fundamental goal will be developing a probability-based optimiza-
tion tool that can reflect the nature of solar and wind energy outputs. This
www.medicalarts4u.com
tool would allow Independent System Operators and Regional Transmission A personal message from Peter Guske PT:
In the last quarter century, there has not been
Operators to consider renewable energy as an option for their expansion a solitary day where I, personally, have failed to
plans and help them calculate the capacity credit for each solar or wind farm. follow exactly the same techniques as in
The Back Saver System, for myself.
DOE is investing $359,691 in the Virginia Tech project. Cost share
is $89,958. Go to pgi.hotims.com for more information.
September 2017 | 7
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_7 7 9/6/17 8:53 AM


NOTES

BY CORINA RIVERA LINARES, CHIEF ANALYST, TRANSMISSIONHUB

APPROVAL SOUGHT FOR PROJECT CONNECTING ARIZONA, MEXICO GRIDS


Nogales Transmission L.L.C. and UNS sources of electricity in the event of a reli-
Electric Inc. (UNSE) requested from the ability emergency.
Arizona Power Plant and Transmission The Nogales Interconnection Project con-
Line Siting Committee certificates of sists of these three components, all of which
environmental compatibility for author- would be in Santa Cruz County, the com-
ity to build two related transmission panies said:
projects connecting Arizona and Mexico. A UNSE 138-kV gateway substation
The facilities would result in an asyn- and a Nogales Transmission 230-kV gate-
chronous connection between the electric way substation, which would be the
grid in southern Arizona and the electric location of high voltage direct current
grid in northwestern Mexico, offering converter equipment, will be referred to
such benefits to each system as access to collectively as the Gateway substation substation to the U.S.-Mexico border,
additional energy sources, markets and A new, approximately three-mile, dou- where it will interconnect with the Red
ancillary services; cost savings; and eco- ble-circuit 138-kV transmission line will be Nacional de Transmisin, the state-
nomic development, the companies said. built by UNSEone circuit will extend the owned transmission grid operated by
The facilities would support the reli- existing UNSE Vail to Valencia line from a Centro Nacional de Control de Energa.
ability of each electric system, including point near UNSEs Valencia substation to The companies noted that entities on
providing bidirectional power flow, volt- the proposed Gateway substation, and one both sides of the international border
age support and emergency assistance, circuit will connect the new Gateway sub- have taken initial steps to facilitate the
as needed, for the electric systems north station to the existing Valencia substation Nogales Interconnection Project, which
and south of the international border, the A new approximately two-mile, sin- is being jointly developed by MEH
companies said. gle-circuit, 230-kV transmission line Equities Management Co. and Nogales
The Nogales, Arizona, area, which relies will be built by Nogales Transmission Transmission, which is an indirect sub-
on a single transmission line for power on double-circuit capable structures sidiary of Hunt Power L.P., an indirect
supply, would obtain access to additional that will connect the proposed Gateway subsidiary of Hunt Consolidated Inc.

EV BATTERY STARTUP ROMEO POWER GAINS $30M IN SEED FUNDING


Romeo Power, packed with former The modular battery packscomprised companies, according to the release.
employees from Tesla and other tech of cylindrical lithium-ion cellscan Weve seen incredible momentum in a
giants, is drawing a sizable amount of ven- be used in cars, power sport vehicles, short period, and were scaling manufac-
ture capital in its drive to challenge bigger motorcycles, trucks, buses and forklifts, turing as fast as we can to meet demand,
energy storage pioneers. according to the company release. The said Michael Patterson, Romeo Power
The Southern California startup announced trademarked PowerStack stationary stor- founder and CEO. Theres a massive mar-
it has attracted $30 million in seed financ- age pack can be used by businesses to ket opportunity for energy storage tech-
ing, which follows a $5 million round of store electricity during off-peak hours. nologies.
early investment. The large-scale fiscal Romeo Power says it has gained $65 Romeo Power employees, who previ-
injection came as Romeo Power com- million in initial orders since kicking off ously worked for Tesla, SpaceX, Apple,
pletes its 113,000 square-foot manufac- its sales effort this year. Those contracts Amazon and Samsung, began selling its
turing site near downtown Los Angeles. and design agreements span U.S. and packs several months ago. The packs
Romeo is ramping production of its lith- European automakers, manufacturers of went into production even before Teslas
ium-ion battery packs for electric vehicle motorcycles and forklifts, industrial play- highly publicized factory was completed,
(EV) and stationary storage applications. ers such as power designers and robotics according to a previous article by Forbes.

8 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_8 8 9/6/17 8:53 AM


EYE ON THE WORLD
First Solar Connecting Solar Projects Down Under
First Solar won a 241 MW module supply contract by RCR (PV) modules, to produce about 531,000 MWh of sustainable
Tomlinson as engineering, procurement and construction con- energy each year.
tractor for Edify Energys Daydream (180.7 MW) and Hayman On completion, the projects will provide environmental ben-
(60.2 MW) solar projects in Queensland, Australia. This con- efits, producing enough sustainable energy to displace 429,000
tract takes First Solars delivery pipeline to over 500 MW in the metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year combined.
next 12 months. This will serve the needs of nearly 73,000 average Queensland
Located across two sites north of Collinsville, the projects homes, the equivalent of taking nearly 115,000 cars off the road.
will use an optimized technology solution that includes single Construction on the projects is scheduled to commence in the
axis tracking technology from Array Technologies, and more third quarter 2017, with module delivery in fourth quarter 2017
than 2,026,565 First Solar advanced thin film photovoltaic and first quarter 2018.

Silver Spring to Extend Starfish into London Smart Lighting Projects


Silver Spring Networks Inc. will deploy its Starfish platform-
as-a-service (PaaS) across the city of London and the London
borough of Barking and Dagenham. This adds to the previously
announced London deployment in the City of Westminster.
Through Urban Control Ltd, the newest company within
the DW Windsor Group, Silver Springs Starfish is expected to
connect approximately 12,000 smart street lights in the city of
London and 15,500 smart street lights in the borough of Barking
and Dagenham. Starfish is based on Silver Springs wireless net-
work and data platform, built on the Wi-SUN Internet of Things
(IoT) mesh technology specification.
Silver Spring is a founding member and co-chair of the
Wi-SUN Alliance, which drives the interoperability for wireless
solutions based on the IEEE 802.15.4g standard.
We are excited that our go-to-market strategy is gaining
momentum internationally, with our newest award in the UK,
and we are honored to expand our deployment in London,
Ayse Ildeniz, Silver Spring Networks chief operating officer, said
in a company statement. Being selected by London demon-
strates that world-class cities rely on technology that is proven
to be secure, reliable, scalable and based on our open standards operational costs, while also improving service reliability and helping lay a platform for future
technology. IoT applications.
Silver Springs platform was selected to provide 100 percent In East London, the borough of Barking and Dagenham is aiming to drive energy efficiency
coverage in the dense urban setting of London, including streets, through remote dimming and brightening of the new smart street lights. The program is a core
lanes and alleyways where cellular technology is unavailable, aspect of the Boroughs goal to become the Green Energy Capital of London, and an important
and star networks could not reach. The Square Mile is a aspect within the selection was Silver Springs ability to deploy additional IoT services in the future.
global financial hub and central business district through which With more than 26.7 million enabled devices delivered on five continents. Silver Spring
more than 450,000 commuters pass daily. The smart street lights Networks has also deployed its technology in Bristol, Chicago, Copenhagen, Dubai, Glasgow,
will help London achieve its energy savings goals and reduce Kolkata, Melbourne, Mexico City, Paris, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Singapore, and Washington, D.C.

September 2017 | 9
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1709pg_9 9 9/6/17 8:53 AM


Wheel Power
BY ROD WALTON, SENIOR EDITOR

Innovations Accelerate Fleet Management Future

S uccess is both a destination and a journey.


Sound likes a money line for moti-
vational speakers, but this is literally the
One of the key pre-
senters at the EUFMC,
CMS Energy fleet manager
scheduling more efficient.
Setting the target of planned work
each week is based on hours required
truth for electric utility fleet managers. Kyle Jones, talked about and working daily with operations to ful-
The job, from morning to night, is getting break-through thinking fill the needs of the demand work, Jones
their companys vehicles repaired, rotated that pushes advances said. Our current target is to complete
and rolling down the road to the next in mechanic efficiency, Kyle Jones 70 percent of planned work weekly.
dispatch call. They have to be obsessed cost (per-class unit cal- Karen Garrett, product
with safety, environmental, fuel, mechani- culations) and, last but not least, overall planning analyst for the
cal, cost and scheduling concerns. A fleet vision. In speaking later with POWERGRID Freightliner On-Highway
managers brain cant drive 55. International, Jones said that break-through division of Daimler
Many of them gathered in June at the annu- thinking is stretching yourself to achieve a Trucks North America,
al Electric Utility Fleet Managers Conference in goal which you can barely see or touch. It focuses on making fleet
Karen Garrett
Williamsburg, Virginia. Presentations focused is encouraging your team to achieve the managers aware of the
on regulatory and legislative updates, Ansi miracle. latest ways to avoid the biggest bugaboo
92.2 standards, best processes, safety, prod- What does that kind of victory look like? of fleetsaccidentsand detailing the
ucts, technician training, maintenance and On the safety front, CMS unit Consumers safety systems of the future. She talked
other issues. The way forward is accelerating Energy reduced injuries by close to 90 about game changers entering the prover-
as transportation planners deal with shifts percent, while capital spending was used bial information superhighway on-ramp
to natural gas-fueled and electric motors, to replace costly older vehicles and isolate such as active lane assistance, active blind
directional aids such as GPS and emergency operational data to identify and reduce spot assistance and surround view.
planning, not to mention leaps in dispatch under-used models. The team also broke These futuristic and automated safety
software and operational metrics. down planned and demand work to make aids already are being utilized in the

10 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_10 10 9/6/17 8:53 AM


passenger car market, but the commer- to the rigorous life-cycle of the truck, percent with systems included, while
cial side is waiting for proof that they Garrett said. Many of these systems are improper lane changes (clearly avoidable
really meet the demands of the trade. also in the process of commercializing with good driving practices) dropped
These types of systems require a sig- developing up to the heavy duty truck 46 percent per million miles.
nificant amount of validation through use cases we require all our components Safety is crucial, no doubt. Picking the
many use cases and environments to meet. These two pieces together are driv- right truck for the job also is a key deci-
ensure the components can stand up ing our timing to introduce these systems sion for fleet buyers. Utilities also must
on our trucks. determine if enhancements are worth the
A 2015 National Transportation Safety cost of upkeep. CMS Energy developed a
Board report focused on the use of cost-per-class unit metric to help it push
forward collision avoidance systems to beyond typical benchmarking studies.
prevent and mitigate rear-end crashes Our fleet team wanted to show the
(Figure 1). The systems factored into the relationship between the overall number
NTSB report included collision warn- of units with the class size vs. the dollars
ing systems, dynamic brake support, required to maintain, CMS Jones said.
automated emergency braking and other He admitted, though, that this metric did
avoidance technologies. not give the whole story.
According to the NTSB, dangerous This metric provided substantial
impacts fell dramatically with new avoid- opportunities to our group identifying
ance systems in place as opposed to not cost savings, he said. However, what we
having them. Rear-end collisions fell 71 found was this metric was only an internal

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measurement (and) it did not provide
the view in how we impact the overall
operation. We are currently utilizing this
metric to ensure we are controlling costs.
. . We established the mechanic efficiency
index to show how our performance was The health of a fleet is most important concern in bad conditions. Giving crews
impacting unit availability. when its needed in sudden fashion, such panic buttons they wear on their person
Its not enough to simply buy new bells as disaster calls and other field repairs. allows dispatch to quickly respond to
and whistles. Someone must know how Another key is knowing what assets are emergency situations on jobsites as well.
they function. In addition, fleet managers positioned where and using technology to Training is a foundation for all successful
must ensure they have the supply chain make calls quickly and accurately. fleet deployment and maintenance success.
ready to roll and the skilled technicians Efficient and highly-connected dispatch Excellent training, Pacific Gas & Electrics
to work with new components. services can be the birds-eye view for fleet operations manager Ana Sarver point-
Meanwhile, some things never change, repair crews responding to an outage. ed out at the EUFMC event, requires
no matter how much the technology Gaps in deployment wastes time and engagement from mechanics, engineering
improves. Jones said that good managers money, so things like GPS tracking and garage operations leadership.
CMS Energys Jones added that his
FIGURE 1: Accidents with automated vs. no automated safety aids utility has developed a mechanic effi-
ciency index that includes average time
for preventative maintenance, demand
workload, hours billed, overtime and
something called quality comebacks.
Repair comebacks, of course, cost time
and additional money. Organizing these
factors into an index was a comprehen-
Source: NTSB-2015

sive way of making sense of fleet data.


This index allows us to take the most
important actors of a technicians day
and track the progress through a single
must always get back to the basics. They technology can not only get crews where metric, he said. The method of the
must spend time with the mechanics and they need to be, but also allow both dis- index focuses on several key performance
field crews to understand what works and patchers and fleet managers to know in indicators at once, giving us the ability to
what is not running on all cylinders. They real-time when one job is done and when quickly identify gaps and determine what
must determine how to keep it all running its time to move on to the next. adjustments need to be made by each
at premium levels, sometimes with low- Having the ability to mechanic to achieve the desired results.
er-octane budgets. dispatch crews based Like a good driver who pays attention
The most challenging part of fleet is really on whos closest to the to oil pressure, temperature and RPMs,
two-fold: Delivering world-class perfor- outage, type of truck or electric utility fleet managers must have
mance in service of operations and com- skillset of the crew several gauges to measure progress. They
peting for capital dollars while keeping makes response times take stock of factors such as fuel, repairs,
the balance of lifecycle in checkall the faster and makes the fleet Ryan Driscoll dispatch timing and, of course, safety. They
while dealing with the annual demands more efficient when they arrive to the drive innovations through planned trials
of reducing O&M, Jones said. outages, said Ryan Driscoll, marketing and gain invaluable experience in how
Downtime in the garage cuts down mar- director for tracking software firm GPS their crews respond to unplanned crises.
gin as much as any other kind of waste. Insight. Safety of these crews is also a They can never yield on that journey.

12 | September 2017
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1709pg_12 12 9/6/17 8:53 AM


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BY PAT PATERNOSTRO, ARCT; JOE STEWART, PG&E; TONY CARLOS, TREES INC.

Excelling at Customer Service T


Providing safe and reliable electric power takes the coordination of multiple
how three organizations serving the Fresno, California, area made it h

14 | September 2017
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1709pg_14 14 9/6/17 8:53 AM


its customers, based on a sliding scale.

Takes Teamwork
Across the entire service network,
PG&Es goal is to maintain an average
customer service rating of excellent.
To achieve that goal, PG&E has acted on

teams, vendors and partners. Heres the story of customer feedback while evaluating how
the entire organization works together as
happen by making teamwork their No. 1 priority. a team to provide excellent service.

ENHANCING CUSTOMER
COMMUNICATION
M ost customers dont think about what
goes on behind the scenes when it
comes to electricity, or about what goes into
Due to PG&Es strong relationship with
local tree company Trees Inc., a pilot pro-
making it possible to turn on a lightbulb, gram was launched based on improving
watch TV or access any other modern neces- communication with every customer. The
sity. Those whose job is to make this possi- participants included crews from ACRT
ble, however, know that it takes hard work, Inc., which is PG&Es vegetation manage-
dedication and teamwork to pull it off. ment consulting partner, Trees Inc. and
In a mission to provide better customer PG&E employees.
service in the Fresno, California, service The pilot program included a series
district, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), of focus groups to create a platform for
ACRT Inc. and Trees Inc. created a plan ACRTs foresters and Trees Inc.s tree care
that has helped enhance overall service workers to get to know one another.
to its customer base. Its a multifaceted Although their work overlaps, the group
approach that has served the utility and its sessions allowed foresters and tree care
partners well over the past several years. workers to become acquainted on a per-
Following are some of the essential sonal level and to chat about shared busi-
tenets of their approach to providing ness as it relates to their important work.
better service. In addition, the focus groups offered
field personnel a firsthand look at deci-
EVALUATING CUSTOMER SERVICE sion making at the management level.
PG&Es service platform revolves around Participants viewed customer satisfaction
three critical metrics that are followed surveys, metric scorecards and patrol
across every service its provides: safety, standards, offering transparency into
quality of work and customer satisfaction. how field operations were connected to
Safety and quality of work are straight- the goals of the management teams.
forward measures. Safety can be mea- Most importantly, the focus groups
sured by how many accidents are report- brought clarity to sometimes difficult
ed each month, work quality by how customer scenarios that these teams
often crews must be sent into the field to often face. Teams were given talking
make corrections. points and training on how to deal with
Customer service can be a little more these scenarios appropriately, effective-
slippery. One of the ways that PG&E ly and consistently. Creating a uniform
measures customer service is through experience for customers when chal-
a regularly distributed survey among lenging situations ariseunwanted but

September 2017 | 15
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1709pg_15 15 9/6/17 8:53 AM


sometimes necessary in areas like trim-
ming, billing disputes and moreis
critical to overall excellent satisfaction.
In addition, industry literature was dis-
tributed to provide a credible reference
to utility vegetation management best
practices, as well as visual tools to help
customers better understand the neces-
sary work performed by PG&E and its
partners each day.

CUSTOMER SERVICE IN ACTION


When its time to perform the work,
PG&E expects that its customers are communication, there was opportunity strategic. PG&Es customer service has
made fully aware of the job that is being to enhance cross-team communication seen continuous improvement because
done. Its the job of PG&E, ACRT and as well. PG&E thus instituted a series of of that approach.
Trees Inc. to communicate that message cross-training activities between ACRTs The pilot program in Fresno has
clearly before performing the work as foresters and Trees Inc.s tree care work- been successful. PG&E is working on
safely and accurately as possible. ers. The goal was to forge a better under- expanding similar programs throughout
All efforts are made to make personal standing of how the other works, for its territories in California because the
contact with PG&Es customers. Thats not better coordination and cooperation. results have made an impact. Through
possible in every case, however, because PG&E has always operated under the coordinated efforts to boost communi-
many customers are often at work or guiding principle that tree care workers cationto customers and among PG&E
elsewhere while foresters and tree care and foresters are working toward the teamsall are truly empowered to pro-
workers are working on their property. same goal. Reaching that goal can be vide excellence in customer service.
Knowing these variables, PG&E devel- done more efficiently when both teams
oped a series of communications that help work together. Pat Paternostro Paternostro has been with
enhance overall service and transparency. There are, of course, differences in ACRT for 22 years, including seven years as
These items include door hangers, which the respective work performed by for- operations manager. He earned an associate
explain in detail how work will be done esters and tree care workers, and there- degree in forestry from Pennsylvania State Col-
lege of Technology and is a Certified Arborist
on their property, and a business card fore, breakdowns in communications can
Utility Specialist.
which directs customers to a dedicated occur. Such a disconnect between pre-
Web page where they can learn more scribed work from foresters and the actual Joe Stewart has served 16 years in the indus-
about how ACRT, Trees Inc. and PG&E work carried out by tree care workers try. He has worked four years as VPM for the
can provide excellent customer service. can lead to a negative effect on customer Fresno and Kern divisions of PG&E. He earned
a bachelors degree in biology from the Univer-
Further, when crews do come into direct service.
sity of New Mexico and a Master of Business
contact with customers, PG&E and its When everyone understands each others Administration from the University of Phoenix.
partners have created verbiage that pro- jobs, however, its far easier to work more He is a Certified Arborist Utility Specialist.
motes customer service excellence. This productively for customers. Job shadow-
same language has been incorporated into ing, combined team meetings and daily Tony Carlos has been with Trees Inc. for one
year. He has a bachelors degree in history
foresters voicemail messages and more. communication are just a few initia-
from California State University, Sacramento,
tives ACRT and Trees Inc. instituted to and a juris doctorate from the McGeorge
CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT improve teamwork. As a result of these School of Law. He is a member of The State
TOGETHER initiatives, while the scope of the work Bar of California.
In addition to improved customer has not changed, the approach is more

16 | September 2017
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1709pg_16 16 9/6/17 8:53 AM


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The Next Nest
BY MIKE KAPLAN
KAPLAN, ECOVA

Embracing the
Future of Connectedd
Energy Technologiess
A s utilities develop their demand side
management and customer solution
strategies, they face a host of challenges
de
on
ges
ranging from new business models to com- m-
petition for customer dollars. Emerging con-
nected devices and technologies can be part
of the solution, giving utilities a platform to
enhance customer engagement and improve
demand side management.
Utilities shouldnt, however, sit back
and wait for the next Nest thermostat to
come along. Transforming market adop- much more pro-
tion of connected devices has historically found than simply cre-re-
been easier said than done. Utilities ating new hardware designs,gns, photo courtesy Nest

should proactively use lessons learned algorithms and smartphone apps. pps.
from the success of Nest, and competi- They made the standard, fairly uninter- as more energy efficiency products
tive smart thermostats, and apply them esting thermostat something that cus- become smart, connected and valuable to
to the next wave of connected energy tomers actually covet. consumers and businesses. There are sev-
saving devices for utility residential and Smart thermostats engaged customers eral home and building technologies that
business customers alike. in a new way by moving the conversation have the potential to be Nestified. With
When Nest first launched in 2010, the beyond the basic capabilities of the ther- the right set of customer offerings, utilities
idea that a customermuch less droves mostat. The marketing and sales pitch can expand adoption of these solutions
of themwould pay $250 for a ther- was no longer just about new features and get customers to opt-in to demand
mostat was a foreign concept at best. As and functions for controlling customers side management at the same time:
with many innovative end-user technol- HVAC and saving energy. It was about Energy management systems for
ogies, the prognosticators were wrong. something bigger: simplifying customers small-to-medium-sized businesses:
Looking ahead, Smart Thermostats lives, providing customers with more Energy management systems (EMS)
Market Report 2015-21, released by control and comfort in their homes, and are not new in the commercial sec-
IOT Analytics in March 2016, predicts leading a savvier and more high-tech tor. Long considered a large com-
smart thermostat sales are expected to lifestyle. The message resonated with mercial offering, small-to-medium-
reach $4.7 billion by 2021, growing from utility customers, driving demand for sized businesses (SMBs) can now
$879 million in 2016. reasons beyond the original energy sav- take advantage of the EMS (or smart
Smart thermostat makers drove mass- ings intent. thermostat) capabilities to improve
market adoption by doing something Utilities can learn from this experience control of their buildings, attacking

18 | September 2017
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1709pg_18 18 9/6/17 8:53 AM


30 percent to 50 percent of the to restaurants that now use tablets leveraging smart water heaters
energy savings potential that typ-
ene to take and pay for your order. during periods of peak energy
ically exists. The EMS is not
ical Likewise, utilities should commu- demand, when energy is the most
just about saving energyit
jus nicate how an EMS can help ease expensive. A homeowners next
improves business opera-
imp the two most precious resources of water heater might be able to pro-
tions and reduces mainte-
tio SMBs: time and money. vide updates to her smartphone or
nance headaches. In addi-
na Water heaters: Water heaters arent online if it requires maintenance,
tion, SMBs are increasingly
tio necessarily considered high tech, which brings added value into the
open to new technologies
op but smart water heaters could play home or office. This new type of
that make them more nim-
th a key role in grid management and technology can help break the cycle
ble, from professional ser-
ble demand response for utilities. Green of the water heater simply being an
vices firms adopting mar-
vic Mountain Power in Vermont, for emergency purchase by transform-
keting software to operate
ke example, gives customers more ing it into a purchase that is planned
more like a large enterprise,
mo control over their energy use by for and continuously managed.

photo courtesy Nest

September 2017 | 19
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1709pg_19 19 9/6/17 8:53 AM


Smart lighting: An emerging class of functions and partnerships with Strategy titled Re-energizing the
connected lighting products is pro- external software and services pro- New Energy Consumer, published
viding utilities and their customers viders. The right tools, processes and a couple of years ago, says that 41
with unprecedented control over capabilities are big pieces of the puz- percent of digital consumers trust
their light bulbs. For many customer zle to customer engagement success, their energy provider to help opti-
segments, however, prices are still but utilities also must master how to mize their energy consumption vs.
high and the incremental savings speak to their customers better than 31 percent of non-digital users.
benefit is still being proven. While anyone else. Effectively introducing
prices will come down over time, and communicating new technology As business facilities and home envi-
utilities must effectively market the products is one way to do that. ronments become smarter, there are more
benefits of these products beyond 2) Utilities are getting into the ana- opportunities for utilities to think big
energy savings. Take the ability to lytics game. Like investments in and encourage the adoption of connected
precisely control the hue of any customer engagement, utilities are devices by learning from past industry
bulb: consumers may be interested taking data analytics seriously. With successes. Ultimately, rather than focusing
in setting the right ambience when meter dataunfettered access to how on one singular device for future growth,
their friends come over, while busi- customers are using its services utilities should embrace the ecosystem
nesses will care about how this capa- the utility industry is in a better that these connected devices create within
bility can positively impact sales or position than any other vertical the home or business, and work to scale
employee productivity. Other bene- to understand customer behaviors this across their customer base to deliv-
fits include enhanced security and and needs. With the right analytics er more dynamic grid management and
even health. These are the types of solutions in place, a new level of greater customer satisfaction.
reasons some customers might pay personalized understanding can be The sum of a connected ecosystem
a premium for this technology. embedded in customer engagement provides even greater value to customers
efforts around smart and connected than its parts, and utilities should under-
What role should utilities play in the products. Thats something a product stand how to orient their strategies to
process of framing these benefits to their manufacturer cant do on its own. capitalize on that value.
customers? Part of the answer depends 3) Utilities are transforming the buy-
on how savvy technology vendors are ing process. Utilities are increasing-
Mike Kaplan is vice president
with their own marketing strategies, but ly at the forefront of the purchase of marketing at Ecova. He
utilities should be prepared to be a driv- process for energy related devices. leads Ecovas corporate and
ing force when necessary. In addition, the By influencing the distribution, pur- product marketing efforts for
utility has never been in a better position chase and installation of these prod- solutions provided to utilities
and commercial and indus-
to elevate the message and drive greater ucts, utilities can transform the ener-
trial organizations. His focus areas include
adoption for these products. There are gy buying process into a seamless product messaging, sales enablement, go-to-
several key reasons for this: experience. Technology vendors are market strategy development and demand
1) Utilities are bolstering their cus- already eager to work with utilities generation. Prior to joining Ecova, Kaplan man-
tomer engagement capabilities. as a key channel. In addition, util- aged marketing activities for Retroficiency, the
award-winning building efficiency analytics
Recognizing the need to deepen ities are getting more proactive by
platform acquired by Ecova in October 2015.
customer relationships and improve improving their incentive and rebate His experience spans a number of high-tech-
customer satisfaction, many utili- strategies, and launching online mar- nology markets, including enterprise software,
ties are investing in new customer ketplaces that guide customers to wireless and mobile, analytics and Internet. Ka-
engagement solutions and functions. the right offer for them. Customers, plan holds a bachelor of arts degree in media
studies from the University of Rochester and
Customer and digital experience is particularly those who are connect-
an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of
becoming increasingly core to the ed, are more apt to listen to their Technologys Sloan School of Management.
utility, supported by both internal utility: A report from Accenture

20 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_20 20 9/6/17 8:53 AM


BY ROBERT SONDEREGGER, ITRON

An Affinity for Proper Connections


Ensuring Efficiency with Accurate Transformer and Phase Connectivity
MAPPING TRANSFORMER CONNECTIVITY
Traditionally, verifying transform-
er and phase connectivity has required
either visual tracing of overhead lines or
sending and receiving electrical signals
over the wire. All traditional methods
require considerable human resources.
Using robust machine learning techniques,
patented algorithms have been developed
to accurately determine meter phase con-
nectivity and physical meter-to-transformer
connectivity using voltage measurements
from customers smart meters to determine
an assets location.
These algorithms use the normally
occurring voltage fluctuations at each
meter as a signal to identify friend vs.
stranger, in a manner of speaking. The

P ower outages, whether caused by


extreme weather or by local accidents,
require a timely remedy by utility crews.
This causes unnecessary waste of equip-
ment capacity and power. Theft detection
strategies, based on comparing voltages
voltage monitored by every meter chang-
es as a consequence of one of three types
of events:
Repairing distribution infrastructure follow- of all meters connected to the same Turning on or off a load at the premise
ing an outage could, however, result in the transformer, fail because knowledge of that the meter monitors. Turning on
reconnection of some meters to a transform- connectivity is faulty. Similarly, detecting an electric oven, for example, causes
er or phase other than the one originally high impedance connectionsa threat to a slight decrease in premise voltage.
connected. In addition, there are situations, customer safetyis impaired by the lack Turning on or off a load at a neigh-
especially during power emergencies, where of reliable data on connectivity. boring premise. If an electric oven is
meter connections are rerouted without the Finally, outage detection and reporting turned on in one premise, the slight
utilitys records ever being updated. Over systems rely on accurate knowledge of decrease in voltage is felt by all meters
time, utility records and physical reality transformer and phase connectivity. In connected to the same transformer.
might diverge sufficiently, making it difficult todays communication networks, only Switching a device on the primary side
to manage the distribution network. a subset of the power-off-notifications of the transformer, such as a capacitor
Transformers may fail without warning (PONs) sent by all smart meters affected bank switching in or out, or a voltage
because of overloading due to incorrect by an outage are heard by the head regulator adjusting primary voltage.
connectivity data on record, thus leaving end. Precise connectivity information for
all connected customers without power. each and every transformer is required The meter-to-transformer connectivi-
Meanwhile, other transformers might be to accurately and quickly determine the ty discovery method relies on correlat-
left inadvertently oversized with fewer true extent and identification of all cus- ing five-minute time series of voltage
meters than the original design specified. tomers affected by an outage. changes between any two meters within

September 2017 | 21
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1709pg_21 21 9/6/17 8:53 AM


a user-settable limit, typically 1,000 to FIGURE 1: Distribution of Affinity of all meter connections under the same or under
separate transformers
3,000 feet. The correlation is conducted Distribution of 187,578 Bilateral Meter Affinities
on a daily basis for a minimum of seven

Number of Separate- Transformer Meter Pairs


days, and the results evaluated to either

Number of Same- Transformer Meter Pairs


confirm or reject the identity of each
meters parent transformer. Where such
identity is rejected, an alternate identity
is indicated that is the more likely parent
transformer.

MEASURING AFFINITY
The advanced grid connectivity algo- Affinity between any Meter Pair
Meters on Separate Transformers Meters on Same Transformer
rithms exploit the fact that a voltage
change caused by switching a load at a to which affinity between FIGURE 2: Home vs. Away Affinity of 597 ServicePoints
premise is felt by most meters that are any two meters varies
connected to the same transformer. By helps in determining
correlating each meters voltage changes meter-to-transformer
to those of all other meters that are with- connectivity.
in a reasonable radius (approximately The orange curve in Home Affinity

1,000 feet), therefore, grid operators can Figure 1 shows the dis-
distinguish meters on the same trans- tribution of affinities CL)
95%
former that show the same, simultaneous between meters con- tin
(no
rea
voltage change, from meters on other nected to different trans- rey
A
G
transformers that do not show any simul- formers. The blue curve
taneous change. in this figure shows the
Away Affinity
Because interval data timing is impre- distribution of affinities
cise, identifying actual connectivity between meters on the same transformer. x-axis. Note the nearly complete sepa-
requires collecting and correlating a The number of combinations is shown ration of affinity ranges between same
sufficiently large number on the left or right vertical axis respec- transformer and different transform-
of voltage changes tively, and the affinity for each er meter pairs. For each individual
in order to use combination is shown on the meter, the analytic process calculates
statistics-based affinities with every other meter that
approaches to minimize utility records indicate is on the same
error. This method uses a transformer. The highest such affinity
quantitative measure, affini- is called home affinity. For the same
ty, which characterizes the meter, affinities are then calculated with
degree to which two meters every meter not on the same transformer,
experience the same local within a configurable distancesuch as
voltage changes. The degree 1,000 to 3,000 feet. The highest such
affinity is called away affinity.
If home affinity is higher than away
affinity, the utility-supplied connectivity
data for the subject meter is validated as
correct. If the away affinity is greater than
the home affinity, the utilitys connectiv-
ity data is likely wrong for this meter.

22 | September 2017
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1709pg_22 22 9/6/17 8:53 AM


Transformer Connectivity
Electric meters are connected to secondary distribution transformers to
reduce distribution high voltage to safe levels for households. There are by comparing meter voltage to that of
many transformers of different capacities along distribution lines, both neighboring meters and find misplaced
underground and overhead. The choice of which transformer a meter is or misfiled meters.
connected to is dictated by physical proximity as well as by optimal loading Performing analytics on smart meter
Number of Same Transformer Meter Pairs

of transformer capacity. This connection between an individual meter and a data without accurate and timely knowl-
distribution transformer is known as transformer connectivity. edge of meter-to-transformer or meter-
to-phase connectivity is like finding your
way with an out-of-date map. Advanced
Furthermore, the transformer to which the correct home for the subject meter. grid connectivity algorithms are like the
the meter with the highest affinity is con- GPS for smart grid analytics, allowing
nected indicates the most likely correct IMPORTANCE OF ACCURATE utilities to accurately and timely track
transformer for the subject meter. CONNECTIVITY meter locations in relation to the trans-
Figure 2 shows a sample of 597 meters Accurate meter-to-transformer con- formers that serve them.
whose home affinity is shown on the nectivity as well as meter-to-phase is
Y-axis and the away affinity on the essential to enable a truly smart grid. It
X-Axis. All meters in the top left half of allows utilities to analyze each line seg- Robert Sonderegger is a
the figure have correct connectivity as ment from meter to feeder for revenue director and software engi-
neering advisor at Itron. He is
stated, while the 10 percent of meters in assurance and theft detection, and to
responsible for technical lead-
the bottom right half are clearly miscon- gain valuable insight into their distribu- ership, software innovation
nected. For any one meter in this group, tion systems. Utilities can detect power and advanced technology.
its away affinity on the x-axis points to theft and high-impedance connections

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September 2017 | 23
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1709pg_23 23 9/6/17 8:53 AM


BY CJ PARISI AND SIRI VARADAN, ABB ENTERPRISE SOFTWARE

Recognizing a Tiger
Teaching Machines to Learn and Prevent Asset Failure
I magine youre walking through a jungle
populated with all kinds of wild animals
and have only heard of, but never seen, a
tiger. For your safety, you need to know how
to identify a tiger and take evasive action to
avoid becoming its next meal. If someone
told you a tiger has four legs, pointed ears, a
long tail and whiskers, theres a good chance
youd be frightened if a common cat crossed
your pathand while your attention was
on the cat, the tiger might sneak up on you.
There is much difference between a common
cat and a tiger, but not until youve seen and
compared both can you process the differ-
ences and learn to recognize one from the
other. Its a simplistic example, but it high-
lights the critical nuances of learning. The
same is true of machine learning: if you want
a computer to distinguish a tiger from a cat, actions. Just like the stroller in the jungle, create a system that could then produce
it must have the right parameters or features the solution must process normal data automated decisions. Even with a full
that uniquely define a cat and a tiger. operations to recognize the comparative team of experts, it took several months
That might sound a bit counterintui- view of data indicating potential risk. to develop a first principles-based model
tive; after all, the widely-accepted defi- ABBs 30 plus years of history creating to predict the probability of failure. In
nition of machine learning from pioneer industrial software provided data models todays dynamic and fast-paced business,
Arthur Samuel says that the computer for operationally sound assets, which companies rarely can dedicate that kind
can learn without being explicitly pro- the company used as a foundation for the of time to creating a single asset model.
grammed. The key lies in the word analytical software solution. This is where machine learning excels.
explicitly, because when it comes to
learning, neither machine nor human LEARNING EXTENDS INITIAL INTELLIGENCE MACHINE LEARNINGNOT NEW,
can start from nothing. ABB held a lot of transformer data BUT NEWLY EMPOWERED
from not only ABB transformers, but also Machine learning, along with other
EXPERT SYSTEMS START WITH EXPERTS from other vendors such as GE/Alstom, branches of artificial intelligence, is not
Lets consider how human knowledge Waukesha and others. When developing a new discipline. It started in the 1950s
leads to machine learning. An analytical its power transformer data models, there- with work from famous pioneers like
software solution that ABB has worked fore, it had a lot of useful information to Alan Turing and the previously-men-
on for several years, ABB Ability Asset build the foundation. The transformer tioned Arthur Samuel. Today, because
Health Center, uses data gathered from health model was carefully crafted by of advances in computing speed and
industrial assets to predict potential translating and codifying experience and the availability of accessible intelligence
risk of failure and determine remedial best practices from domain experts to platforms like Microsoft Cortana, this

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field is rapidly gaining popularity and its We used PD data collected from six trans- of impending failure up to eight hours in
adoption is growing exponentially. formers connected to Qualitrol transformer advancean amount of time that could
Expert models and machine learning monitoring systems. For more than a year, a prevent the loss of millions of dollars of
are not mutually exclusive techniques measurement was taken every five minutes. equipment. This was encouraging because
choosing one does not mean you must give Each measurement included data from six we can only expect further improvement
up the other. In fact, machine learning is couplers placed on each transformer, with in identifying and classifying incipient
an excellent choice to supplement expert each coupler producing 64 data points. For faults as the model is refined and the data-
knowledge and accelerate model develop- this test, we looked at the number of PD set grows larger and more diverse.
ment. Nevertheless, machine learning is events and the peak PD magnitude detect-
not simply throwing data into the machine ed. To train the model, cross-validation EXPLORING A NEW JUNGLE
to see what sticks. For the machine to was used where five of the transformers Machine learning, as with all learning,
learn effectively, it must first be guided by did the training and the sixth did vali- is a synthesis of foundational knowledge.
domain expertise. That same expertise is dation. Then to confirm the results, the In other words, learning can take place
ultimately required to refine the model. process cycled six times, rotating through only by building upon base knowledge;
each transformer for validation. and, the stronger the base knowledge,
IS THERE A TIGER IN THE
TRANSFORMER? THE PARTIAL Even with a full team of experts, it took several
DISCHARGE EXPERIMENT
months to develop a first principles-based
Predicting and preventing industrial
asset failure is core to asset health. In
model to predict the probability of failure.
essence, you must recognize signs that can
be safely ignored (cat) and those for con- INITIAL RESULTS INDICATE A or in this case the data models, the faster
cern (tiger). In ABBs Asset Health Center, POTENTIAL TO SAVE MILLIONS and more efficiently machines can learn
we decided to see whether we could use The right data is essential in learning, to discern. Without the available history
machine learning to teach our transformer and learning, as demonstrated by the and domain knowledge used for building
model to recognize imminent failure based cat and tiger example, is the ability to the PD asset health data models, time
on partial discharge (PD) data. PD was discriminate. Had black stripes been would have been wasted analyzing and
chosen because it can be remotely moni- a descriptor data point, we would not mapping irrelevant data sets and algo-
tored while the transformer is in service, have ruled out all cats, but it would have rithms, and we might never have come to
which means that no planned outages or narrowed the field. Add three-inch teeth these conclusions. In the jungle of asset
interruption to service is required while and the distinct meow and that might management, finding tigersrecogniz-
data is being collected. The goal was to have done it. The same holds true with ing impending asset failuresis a matter
predict an unhealthy state with enough machine learningthe more unique fea- of knowing the right combination of
advanced warning, so that corrective action tures used in the training process, the warning signs.
could be taken before asset failure. smarter the machine becomes.
We knew that PD damages insulation In the PD experiment, all the data Siri Varada leads R&D product
and PD activity spikes immediately before gathered was fed into a neural network to management and activities
failures. We didnt know, however, process and identify patterns leading up related to data analytics at ABB
Enterprise Software.
whether there are patterns in PD activity to failures. Three instances of failure in the
in the months, days and hours leading dataset were detecteda small sample for CJ Parisi is chief data scientist
up to a failure that could serve as an early teaching a model to recognize failure and with ABB Enterprise Software.
warning indicator. Nor did we know generalize to all failures. Even with the He has 22 years of experience
what is the typical pattern of PD activity less-than-ideal data, however, there was developing and delivering utili-
ty and mining software, provid-
announcing an imminent failure or how enough PD activity information for the
ing both operational and reporting solutions.
far in advance this pattern appears? neural network to learn patterns and warn

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BY MICHAEL LIPPERT, SAFT

Finding the Energy Storage Sweet Spot


Key steps must be followed to find the optimum sized megawatt-scale
Li-ion energy storage system for a large wind or solar plant.
A megawatt-scale lithium-ion (Li-ion) energy storage FIGURE 1: Comparison of PV generation (red) and ramp rate controlled
system (ESS) can be vital in successful grid integration of output to the grid (blue)
a large wind or solar plant by addressing the intermittency
and unpredictability inherent in renewable energy. The
challenge, however, is sizing the ESS for maximum oper-
ational and financial benefit. This is because an ESS can
have several distinct roles, and only by understanding its
role and the specifics of its site can engineers specify the
right ESS for the job.

RAMP RATE CONTROL


Grid operators often must limit the rate of change at
which power is injected into the gridthe ramp rate. The
output of a photovoltaic (PV) array of several megawatts
FIGURE 2: Smoothing of PV production in 30 minute forecast steps
can drop by 70 to 80 percent in about a minute. The ESS,
therefore, must discharge in a way that ramps the net
facility output down smoothly over seven or eight minutes
(Figure 1). The ESS can absorb or release energy when a
sudden shift in wind or passing cloud causes a step change
in output. Ramp rate control ensures that the facility ramps
at a rate that is compatible with the power system. This
is particularly true for island grids, because they lack the
inertia of mainland networks and are susceptible to disrup-
tion, which could be caused by simultaneous uncontrolled
ramping of several renewable facilities.
The ESS will experience many small charge and dis-
charge cycles. Over the day, the cumulative energy charged
and discharged in 24 hours, known as throughput, can FIGURE 3: Shaping ensures a stable power output with controlled ramping
amount to around two to three multiples of the capacity of up and down in the morning and evening
the ESS (2C to 3C).
Typically, a 10 MW solar farm would be combined with
an ESS capable of delivering 5 MW of power and storing
1.3 MWh of energy. The facility would operate at an average
depth of discharge (DOD) of 6 percent and a cumulated
daily energy throughput of 2.5 MWh, which is equivalent to
1.9 times the capacity (1.9C).
In contrast, wind generation generally varies at lower

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amplitudes so a typical 10 MW wind farm could FIGURE 4: Peak shaving can avoid the risk of curtailment
be equipped with a 2.5 MW ESS, delivering 0.58
MWh energy storage. It would operate at an aver-
age DOD of 4 percent with a cumulated daily ener-
gy throughput of 1.9 MWh, or 3.2C.

SMOOTHING
Smoothing aims to keep production within a
given forecast window. The ESS compensates for
power sags and, like ramp rate control, it will
experience many small to medium charge and
discharge cycles with a cumulated energy through-
put equivalent to several full charge and discharge
cycles (Figure 2).
FIGURE 5: Frequency regulation allows ESS to inject or absorb active power
POWER SHAPING to or from the grid
Power shaping uses an ESS to shape the power
output of a plant to deliver steady and predictable
power like baseline generation (Figure 3).
An ESS used for a typical PV farm in this mode
will deliver a large discharge in the morning, before
charging up during peak daylight hours in the mid-
dle of the day and discharging again later in the day.
A typical example for shaping of a 10 MW solar power
plant would be an ESS providing 5 MW power and 10
MWh energy. The average DOD would be 35 percent,
with a daily energy throughput of 7 MWh, or 0.7C.

PEAK SHAVING
Peak shaving is intended to reduce congestion on the
grid at peak times (Figure 4). It is mostly used to reduce FREQUENCY REGULATION
load in periods of high consumption. For example, Frequency regulation ensures grid stability by injecting or absorbing
the ESS discharges to supply consumption peaks, thus active power to keep the frequency inside its limits (Figure 5). In doing
relieving the grid from supplying peak power. so, the ESS helps the grid accommodate more renewable sources.
The technique is also possible on the supply The operational profile of the ESS will depend on the number and
side. For example, the ESS charges (absorbs energy) amplitude of grid frequency deviations. Typically, deviations are of short
when the PV or wind plants power exceeds a set duration and only infrequently at full amplitude. Operational character-
limit. It releases energy into the grid later in the day istics of the ESS can vary considerably depending on the specific appli-
once the peak has subsided. It thereby ensures that cation and location, especially the distribution of discharge cycles at each
the output of a plant never goes beyond an agreed power level.
limit and avoids revenue loss through curtailment. Frequently, operators request that the ESS associated with wind or
In both cases, peak shaving avoids or defers solar plants also provide frequency regulation services on top of its initial
investments in grid infrastructure that would other- smoothing or shaping function. Furthermore, fast reacting energy storage
wise be necessary to cope with peaks in consump- enables renewable plants to effectively contribute to frequency regulation
tion or generation. services.

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DEVELOPING AN ENERGY
MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
An energy management system (EMS)
must be developed to determine the
optimum size for an ESS. An EMS con-
siders inputs such as a site-specific PR or
wind survey, knowledge of ESS perfor-
mance and grid requirements (Figure 6).
Site specific inputs include grid code
limitations and local legislation, as
well as measured data on wind or solar
power output. Its important to use
high resolution survey results from
the actual site over a period of sev-
eral months, ideally a full year. This
accounts for local geography and vari-
ability to achieve accurate sizing of
the ESS, which in turn achieves better
financial performance.
FIGURE 6: Energy management system development requires several inputs
The second set of inputs is the cus- Output requirements

tomers objectives for the plants power Level of power fluctuation Optimization
Max power output
output. This is basically the mode of Droop of frequency regulation Power injected
Voltage control Operation profile Power lost
operation, which can include one or Inertia Power consumed
Power plant Efficiency
more of the roles previously explained Storage systems parameters Auxiliaries
Revenues
and their precise technical parameters Energy Penalties
Discharge power over SOC Life time
and limits, as well as economic variables. Charge power over SOC EMS Capex
Calendar ageing Operation profile Opex
Finally, the battery supplier must con- Cycle ageing
Efficiency Energy storage system
tribute a deep understanding of ener-
PV/Wind integration
gy storage technology, including energy,
High resolution data
charge and discharge power capacities Site dependent
Sizing = optimizing Sizing = optimizing Sizing = optimizing
and the effect of aging on the battery
electrochemistry.
Combined with modelling, these fac- the optimum balance between revenues By minimizing temperature variation, the
tors determine the cost profile, which and costs during the installations entire cells and modules experience a constant
is made up of operating revenues and life time. rate of aging. In turn, this allows for pre-
penalties to balance lifetime costs, asset cise prediction of battery performance
lifetime costs, operating expenses and UNDERSTANDING BATTERY over its lifetime.
capital expenditures. PERFORMANCE Other important aspects are to ensure
Modelling is an iterative process that In addition to sizing the ESS correctly, accurate measurement of state of charge
starts with a first estimate of battery it is equally important to understand the (SOC), good SOC management and
specification that is combined with the factors that lead to high performance and high energy efficiency of the battery
other inputs to the EMS to deliver a cost a long and predictable life. system itself, as well as the power con-
profile. By repeating the process with a Good thermal management is the most verter and auxiliary systems such as
range of sizes, its possible to identify a crucial factor and ensures the tempera- cooling plant.
sweet spot, where the operator will find ture is consistent across the entire ESS. Together these extend ESS lifetime,

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enhance performance and optimize the FIGURE 7: Schematic of 10 MW PV plant in Puerto Rico
total cost of ownership.

OPTIMUM ESS FOR PUERTO RICO


A 10 MW PV plant in Puerto Rico
successfully optimized an ESS (Figure 7).
The grid code required that ramp rates
be limited to no more than 10 percent in
output change per minute. In addition,
the operator required support to grid
frequency by up to 5 percent.
Modeling was used to identify the
optimum ESS as having 1.3 MWh ener-
gy storage capacity and 5 MW power especially in facilitating the integration of Laboratory tests on a small (56 kWh)
rating. Saft delivered a solution compris- intermittent renewable generation within battery established a DC roundtrip effi-
ing three Intensium Max 20 P high power power networks by making it both pre- ciency averaging 97 percent and better
containerized systems. This balanced dictable and grid compatible. than 95.5 percent for any power rate.
This stability at different power rates
Modeling is an iterative process that starts ensures consistent performance. Field
testing on the 3 MWh ESS confirmed
with a first estimate of battery specification
the efficiency, showing that performance
that is combined with the other inputs to the and functionalities measured on small
EMS to deliver a cost profile. systems represent full scale operation.
Owners and operators of power plants
both the peak power and custom- Saft delivered a fully integrated turn- must have complete confidence that their
ers requirements. It also anticipated a key ESS based on three Intensium Max ESS is consistent, predictable and the
drop in power over the lifetime of the 20+ containerized systems. Together, the right size. To achieve this, they must
ESS due to electrochemical aging. This three units deliver 3 MWh of power to recognize that ESS operational profiles
should ensure that the ESS will con- help smooth peak demands on substa- are complex and multi-functional and
tinue to meet the operators minimum tions and compensate for the intermittent sizing is an iterative process involving the
technical requirements even at the end production of wind farms and PV installa- battery and EMS.
of its lifetime. tions, as well as deliver ancillary services
to control network frequency and voltage. Michael Lippert is mar-
ENDESA GRAN CANARIAENSURING The project has confirmed that a SOC keting and business devel-
SOC ALGORITHM ACCURACY algorithm (developed by Saft for its bat- opment manager for Safts
Energy Storage Business.
A 3 MW ESS has been installed on the tery management system) corresponds well
He holds a degree in Euro-
Spanish Island of Gran Canaria as part with the measured energy integration. pean business studies in
of Endesas pioneering STORE (Storage France and Germany and has been working
Technologies of Reliable Energy) project THE ACCURACY OF THE SOC for more than 20 years in different international
to demonstrate how energy storage can ALGORITHM CONTRIBUTES TO: sales and marketing positions at Saft focusing
on railway, traction and stationary markets. His
promote the integration of renewable Effective cell balancing
current responsibilities cover strategic and oper-
energy within utility networks. Effective use of capacity to generate ational marketing for industrial battery markets,
A main aim of the STORE project is to revenue in particular market and product development
demonstrate the technical and economic Permanent operation at partial SOC for renewable energies and smart grids.
viability of large-scale energy storage, without need for a maintenance charge

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BY ROD WALTON, SENIOR EDITOR

Taking Charge
California Event Shows Potential of Energy Storage
A recent project in California may be the
first of its kindat least in the U.S.
in which large-scale batteries actually fired
role before converting back to absorbing
power from the functioning grid.
The biggest question is whether this is a
Turbines need to rotate at certain
speeds to generate the right frequency,
Molinari pointed out. If you have more
up a generator to restore grid operations game changer, said Matt Roberts, vice pres- production than load, the frequency goes
without a power feed from the transmis- ident of the Washington, D.C.-based Energy up. If more load then production, fre-
sion network or backup source, the utility Storage Association. No, but its one of the quency does down.
announced earlier this summer. new value streams this system can deliver. You need to put the energy somewhere
In May, the Imperial Irrigation Districts Juggling all of those streams is exceeding- to stabilize the grid, otherwise the fre-
(IID) new energy storage system provided ly complex, GEs Molinari pointed out. quency goes up and down too much.
the electricity needed to get its 44-MW Software and control systems must wade This reconciliation is crucial, of course,
combined-cycle natural gas turbine through all the immediate and intermit- because customers expect reliability from
going at the El Centro station. This is a tent inputs of a grid system which is pro- their grid. The black start capability could
big deal in the expansion of energy stor- cessing flow from renewables as well as prove crucial because those same custom-
facing resiliency ers also want renewables and resiliency.
challenges once When you design the grid, you design
a gap develops in it to be reliable; when something goes
electron flow. wrong, you go to resiliency, Roberts
IIDs energy stor- noted. Storage plays a role on both sides
age system went of those equations.
online in October Some of utility-scale energy storages
2016. The part- biggest projects have come online in the
ners in the project past year. GE and Southern California
include Coachella Edison (SCE) put a unique battery-gas tur-
Energy Storage bine hybrid systemcalled the LM6000
age capabilities, proponents say. Partners LLC, ZGlobal Inc. and GE Energy Hybrid Electric Gas Turbineinto opera-
From where I sit and what I know, Connections (now part of GE Power). tion into generation units at Norwalk and
Im not aware of anybody else able and Historically, an operative grid would Rancho Cucamonga in March.
willing to do so, said Mirko Molinari, be restarted by a backup diesel generator Black starting means not only that
manager of distributed energy resource or some other form of generation, giving energy storage gets deployed on the grid,
development for GE Power, one of the the main turbine time to get going again but that it can get the grid going again.
partners in the IID energy storage proj- and synchronize and keep frequency Industry insiders believe that is a huge
ect. It was not a simple task. steady on the system. deal going forward.
Energy storage systems play several roles The IID event proved that energy stor- Batteries degradate; the point is how
within the grid connection, from load age essentially could jump start the sys- much and how do you use it, GEs
following to load smoothing to frequency tem. The process sounds something like Molinari said. You need to be able to do
regulation. Now, at least in this case and what happens to a car with a dead battery it in the context of the system and not
likely others to follow, it can play a startup but not exactly. just batteries as a standalone.

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BY TOM ROONEY AND BILL MORAN, TRC COMPANIES

Microgrids
ds
Mega-opportunity for Electric Utilities
Across North America, every week to the power grid, microgrids are gener- especially big-volume
g-volume and big-profit
seems to bring new proposals for micro- ating interest and excitement throughout entities like corporate
rate and institutional
gridsself-contained, neighborhood or the energy world, but with one signifi- campuses and industrial ial operation
operations, the
campus-sized energy delivery systems cant exception. more utility executives might fear for
that typically combine generation, often Traditional electric utilities might see their bottom line and viability. Some
renewable sources like wind and solar, microgrids as a threat to their revenue states are restructuring the tariffs that
and energy storage. streams and, in big enough numbers, regulate public utilities to foster develop-
Whether its to lower costs, go green their business models. The more cus- ment of microgrids and use of distribut-
or bolster resiliency by creating a backup tomers that sign up to use microgrids, ed generation.

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Microgrids dont have to be a threat WHY MICROGRIDS ARE in tthose fields. Most customers, even
to utilities, but instead can be a major GOOD FOR UTILITIES large industrial ones, dont want to be in
opportunity, both as energy cost-savers There are two main reasons microgrids the po
power business, and they shouldnt
to consumers and a source of new reve- can work for utilities and not against be. ThThey simply want to lower their
nue for distribution utilities. This article them. First, to be economically feasible, energy costs
c while improving reliability.
presents descriptions of microgrid proj- a microgrids generation must provide Utility ow
ownership of microgrids allow
ects in which TRC has been involved. savings over current retail energy tariffs. customers to accomplish these goals in
customer
They help make the case that there Increased reliability and resiliency come a way that incorporates new technology
are promising upsides for utilities that at a cost, however, and someone must while maintaining the traditional utility
embrace microgrids. pay that cost. To justify passing costs model as a distributor of energy to the
One project that presents a wide along to consumers, those costs must be customer.
range of benefits microgrids can offer offset by improved power quality and a Secondly, microgrids are also prov-
includes PSEG Long Island. The utili- substantial reduction in unplanned cus- ing to be helpful for utilities to reduce
ty won a $1 million grant to engineer tomer outages. What generally clinches the costs of maintaining reliable service.
and design a microgrid for Huntington, the economic incentives for constructing For example, San Diego Gas & Electric
New York, a Long Island community a microgrid are the efficiencies created (SDG&E) struggled for years to main-
that experienced power outages during by energy storage, CHP systems, and, tain service during lightning strikes and
severe storms for several years, includ- in places with abundant wind and solar desert flash floods to 2,800 customers
ing an eight-day blackout following potential and renewable energy incen- in Borrego Springs, California, which
Superstorm Sandy in October 2012. tives, lower generation costs. was served by a single radial transmis-
The Huntington community microg- Microgrids that incorporate renewable sion line through the desert. Installing
rid is designed to combine solar ener- generation often include energy stor- a microgrid in 2009 and 2010, which
gy, a fuel cell, biogas from the towns age systems that provide benefits to the combined diesel generators, rooftop
wastewater treatment plant, traditional grid in terms of frequency and voltage solar and utility scale battery storage,
natural gas, and high-efficiency cen- stabilization. These storage systems also has been a cost-effective way to keep
tral heat and power (CHP) to deliver can serve as a source of reserve power power running, especially for emergency
electricity and heat to local customers to reduce peak demands on substations cooling shelters. The SDG&E project
and institutions. With its robust and and the bulk power transmission sys- is seamlessly meshed with a portion of
diverse mix of fuel sources, the micro- tem. In addition, microgrids with energy the existing utility distribution system
grid is envisioned to provide energy to storage provide a means of dispatching to augment and relieve demand on peak
Huntingtons town hall, hospital, YMCA, renewable energy at the times it is most demand days, and to operate autono-
senior center and wastewater treatment needed independent of the daily cycles of mously through a widespread outage.
plant, as well as other customers. In a sun and wind. As microgrid technology, reliability and
future major weather event that causes When it comes to an undertaking costs improve, utilities and regulators see
a utility power failure, the microg- as complex as designing, installing and that microgrids can be a cost-effective
rid would activate instantaneously to maintaining a microgrid, many custom- alternative to transmission upgrades or
ensure heat and power are available at ers will be just as eager to turn those redundancy. In addition, they can deliver
key municipal facilities and designated tasks over to a large, capable utility as utility-scale benefits, such as supporting
emergency shelters, freeing up PSEG they are to turn over payroll, office infor- smart grid deployments and lowering
Long Island resources to be applied to mation technology and telecommunica- line loss in challenging service areas.
outage restoration resources elsewhere. tions services to large, capable providers In years to come, we can see customized

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deployments of microgrids becoming an already underway thanks to thousands of how to price the value those customers
increasingly popular, proven alternative residential customers installing rooftop will place on maintaining a connection
to conventional transmission and dis- PV. Microgrids are simply the next wave to the utility grid.
tribution upgrades. In states that have of that redefinition. The distribution sys- The opportunity to deploy projects that
restructured utilities to separate power tem, once a linear one-way pipeline serve customers and rationalize network
generation from energy delivery, laws from substation to customer is being reliability make the upgrade costs associ-
must be amended to clarify how much transformed into a bidirectional system ated microgrids worth the mega-oppor-
generation, in the context of a microgrid, connecting a network of energy custom- tunity they provide electric utilities.
a restructured utility is allowed to own, ers and producers much in the way the
and when utilities are allowed to install bulk power transmission system present-
Tom Rooney, LEED AP,
microgrids outside their home service ly works. Utilities must revise their busi-
has more than 20 years
territories, such as to serve a multi-loca- ness model to reflect these foundational experience in the energy
tion customer. These changes are simply changes and extract revenue based on industry focusing on de-
negotiations, however, not deal-killers. providing the capacity to transmit power sign, management and
evaluation of energy effi-
At the highest level, utility business as opposed to a flat cost of energy to
ciency programs. He is a
models are already evolving, as they consumers. Time of day rates are key to
vice president in TRCs Energy Services group,
must. A process of redefining what util- this business model both for utilities and overseeing the technical components of TRCs
ity, grid and generation mean in the microgrid customers. Utilities and portfolio of multifamily and commercial and in-
the context of 2017 energy delivery is regulators are well into working through dustrial energy efficiency programs. Rooney is
involved in design and management of state-
wide efficiency programs for the New Hamp-
Microgrids that incorporate renewable shire Public Utilities Commission, Efficiency
Maine, the New Jersey Office of Clean Energy,
generation often include energy storage and the New York State Energy Research & De-
systems that provide benefits to the grid in velopment Authority (NYSERDA). Tom recently
terms of frequency and voltage stabilization. finished his tenure as a charter member of the
Standards Technical Committee of the Build-
ing Performance Institute (BPI). He is a Certified
Energy Manager. Contact Rooney at trooney@
trcsolutions.com.

Bill Moran, is a senior


electrical engineer in
TRCs Power Delivery
Engineering Practice. He
has more than 35 years
experience in electrical
power generation and
distribution, including design, construction
and operation of large campus type power
distribution systems,ranging in size from 1 MW
to 25 MW. Morans experience with distributed
generation sources range from single diesel
and natural gas fueled reciprocating en-
gine-generators to multi-megawatt dual fuel
gas turbines and steam turbines in combined
cycle operation. He also has managed con-
struction and commissioning of wind energy
projects up to 100 MW in capacity. Contact
Morman at wmoran@trcsolutions.com.

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enables FireEye customers to monitor and protect their
industrial control system (ICS) networks using the cloud-
based Helix service, while eliminating the threat of remote
cyberattacks entering the monitored ICS environment.
Industrial businesses that previously refrained from using from three industry-leading suppliers with different chem-
any cloud or Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) services due istries for a variety of use cases, and anticipates adding to
to security concerns, can now remain confident that their this list of qualified solutions: UniEnergy Technologies
ICS networks are safe from external cyber risks. vanadium-redox flow batteries; Eos Energy Storagezinc
The unidirectional CloudConnect product is based on hybrid batteries; and Samsung SDIlithium-ion batteries.
Waterfalls patented unidirectional gateway technology, Northern Powers energy storage systems incorporate bat-
which physically prevents cyberattacks from entering into teries from these top-tier suppliers together with the com-
an industrial network. panys FlexPhase power conversion platform, controls,
Waterfall Security Solutions battery management hardware and ancillary systems.
GO TO WWW.PGIHOTIMS.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION Northern Power Systems Corp.
GO TO WWW.PGIHOTIMS.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION

Panelboard Barriers
Schneider Electric introduced Fingersafe Shortwave Infrared Camera
IP2X per IEC 60529 Barriers for NQ Lighting Princeton Infrared Technologies Inc. (PIRT) announces
and Appliance Panelboards. Designed what it calls the worlds first and only MegaPixel (MP)
with service professionals safety in mind, shortwave-infrared (SWIR) camera with no ITAR export
Fingersafe, which provides plastic barriers restrictions. The newest camera in Princeton Infrareds
that cover main lugs or main and branch breakers, prevents family of SWIR imaging products to fall under the no ITAR
workers from touching electrical parts, reducing the risk restrictions umbrella is the 1280SciCam, with a 1280 x 1024
of accidental contact with energized components. U.S. image sensor on a 12 m pitch,
Bureau of Labor Statistics cites electrocution as one of the featuring long exposure times,
top four causes of construction industry deaths. Exposure extremely low read noise, 14-bit
to electricity kills more than 150 U.S. workers annually. digital output, and full frame
Fingersafe IP2X barriers are designed to prevent people rates up to 95 Hz. Designed for
from accessing hazardous parts with a finger, and provide advanced scientific and astron-
improved protection from accidental contact when working omy applications, the camera detects light from the vis-
on energized equipment. The barriers increase electrical ible to the SWIR (0.4. to 1.7 microns). It is available with a
workers ability to comply with OSHA CFR 1910.333(a)(1) variety of lens formats. PIRTs 1280SciCam and LineCam12
and make main breakers compliant with UL 67 2017 Service cameras are now classified by the Export Administration
Entrance standards. Regulations as EAR 6A003.b.4.a for export.
Schneider Electric Princeton Infrared Technologies
GO TO WWW.PGIHOTIMS.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION GO TO WWW.PGIHOTIMS.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION

34 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_34 34 9/6/17 9:06 AM


DistribuTECH 2018: The industrys most comprehensive
conference on grid automation and optimization, DER
integration and management, energy storage, T&D engineering
and customer engagement. Jan. 23-25, 2018, San Antonio,
Texas, 918-832-9265 www.distributech.com

CALENDAR

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18 20

SEPTEMBER
ADVANCED TEST EQUIPMENT
Power Grid
RENTALS ........................................ 11 Resilience Summit
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P.O. Box 1260 : Tulsa, OK 74101 Seattle
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www.pennwell.com S&C ELECTRIC COMPANY.......... C4
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sandyn@pennwell.com Overland Park, Kansas

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VICE PRESIDENT itron.com/na/events/itron-utility-week
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Rhonda Brown NERC Grid Security
219.878.6094 fax 219.561.2023 Conference
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25 26
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September 2017| 35
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_35 35 9/6/17 9:06 AM


PARTING THOUGHTS

TALK TRENDS
We expect to meet nearly The Department of Energy should launch a
45 percent of our retail program to manufacture and deploy flexible and
customers energy needs
transportable three-phase recovery transformer sets
through noncarbon emitting
resources in the coming
that can be prepositioned around the country.
National Academies, Enhancing the Resiliency of the Nations Electricity System
years.
Terry Bassham, CEO of Great Plains Energy (parent of
KCP&L) during recent earnings call. Indeed, millennials are far more likely than non-millennials to
have been in contact with their electricity provider within the
The electric power industry is last six months. Millennials prefer digital communication (59
percent have used this channel in the last six months) but they
one of the great American success will also leverage telephone and in-person contact. They want
stories and provides high-quality their interaction to be easy, so they will decide in the moment
jobs that empower our nations which channel is most convenient.
Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative, Spotlight on Millennials report
economic growth. Behind every
wall outlet or light switch, there is Energy utilities possess a physical network with a
a dedicated workforce focused on ubiquitous footprint underpinned by a data control
network. Most smart city visions call for one or both of
powering the lives of millions of these network capabilities.
Americans who rely on electricity ScottMadden, The Smart City Opportunity for Utilities

for nearly everything they do.


Michael J. Bradley, whose company MJ Bradley &
Associates did a report indicating that the electric power
sector employs close to 2.7 million people and accounts for
TWEETS
close to one-fifth of the nations gross domestic product. Duke Energy bringing smart meters to Kentucky customers,
giving them more energy use control & bill payment options
Energy storage has the @DukeEnergy
opportunity to be at the center of
this evolution, becoming the hub for 82,848 #EnergyEfficiency jobs in MA alone! Do you know how many EE jobs
a more resilient, efficient, sustainable are in your state? The answer might surprise you #cleanjobsamerica
and affordable grid. What could be @EfficiencyJobs
more exciting than that, at a time
like this? #Microgrid Islanding: S&C and Ameren show how
Kelly Speakes-Backman, CEO of Energy Storage Association
it works at Illinois microgrid
@SandC_US (S&C Electric)

#Utilities and grid firms like @AVANGRID @Exelon @insideFPL stepping


up with money & manpower vs. Harvey: http://bit.ly/2vF5DbA
@rodwaltonelp

36 | September 2017
www.power-grid.com

1709pg_36 36 9/6/17 9:06 AM


COMING IN 2018 - SAVE THE DATE
19 -21
JUNE 2018
MESSE WIEN | VIENNA | AUSTRIA

BROUGHT TO YOU BY
POWER-GEN & DISTRIBUTECH

Submit a paper for LEADING THE


EVOLUTION
Electrify Europe visit the
Conference page on
www.electrify-europe.com
to find out more
OF ELECTRICITY
Electrify Europe is the worlds first event dedicated to the convergence underway between the power generation
and transmission & distribution sectors, driven by digitalization, decarbonization, decentralization and
electrification. It inspires thought leadership, collaboration, and innovation to transform the future of electricity.

To find out how you can engage with this exciting event, please visit www.electrify-europe.com or contact:

EUROPE NORTH AMERICA & CANADA


Leon Stone Jared Auld
T: +44 (0) 1992 656 671 T: +1(918) 831-9440
E: leons@pennwell.com E: jareda@pennwell.com

Owned and Produced by: Presented by:

Go
Go to
to pgi.hotims.com
pgi.hotims.com for
for more
more information.
information.

1709pg_C3 3 9/6/17 9:07 AM


HEROIC.
Lets stop chasing reliability scores and start changing lives.

ITS TIME TO RAISE THE BAR FOR RELIABILITY.


LOREM IPSUM DOLOR SIT
WE HELP PROTECT YOUR SYSTEMAND ALL THOSE WHO NEED IT.
UIS NOSTRUD EXERCITATION ULLAMCO LABORIS NISI UT UIS NOSTRUD RIS
It takes courage to recognize that being reliable means more than limiting the sustained outages our industry currently tracks.
S&C believes in the power of real lights on reliability free of sustained and momentary outages. The kind of high-quality,
uninterrupted power that customers everywhere can count on no matter what, especially in critical situations when it matters
most. From innovative products that promote a more resilient grid to world-renowned energy storage solutions, were taking the
notion of reliability to another level: the highest one.

Plan for perfect power with S&C, the worldwide leader in reliability.

See the difference at sandc.com/heroic


Go to pgi.hotims.com for more information. S &C Electric Company 2017. All rights reserved.

1709pg_C4 4 9/6/17 9:07 AM