Utilities

A New Paradigm for Utilities: The Rise of the Prosumer

The energy industry’s business model has remained fundamentally unaltered over the last century. It’s a model that emerged out of the Edison age, where the utility was responsible for generating… Read more »

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Utilities Must Digitize to Transform and Perform

Power markets are being redefined. Solar and storage will eventually reach grid parity almost everywhere. It is only a matter of time. When they do, the mass deployment of distributed… Read more »

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Leveraging Data for Smarter Energy Management

With the proliferation of personal smart devices, we are beginning to make good use of data in our everyday lives – placing the world at our fingertips and bringing us… Read more »

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EAM for the IIoT Age

With the growth of asset-related data available through the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and the complexity that comes with sifting through that data, organizations are faced with new operational… Read more »

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An IoT-Based Recipe for Future Substations

More than half of iPhone users in the U.S. upgrade their phone as soon as their provider allows it. That’s not surprising since we, as consumers, are constantly being offered… Read more »

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Value Innovation – Different Thinking, Many Possibilities

To outsmart their competition, organizations develop strategies which are largely based on augmenting beneficial changes in cost and quality. While doing that they operate in confined boundaries of known territories…. Read more »

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Controls Pre-commissioning Is Like Checking your Parachute Before Jumping…A Very Wise Decision.

Wouldn’t you want to make sure your parachute rip chords are OK before jumping out of a plane?  Me too.  Safety first, right?  Well, it’s the same idea with performing… Read more »

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Dream Big: Decarbonization Key to Utilities’ Future

Utilities are undergoing a fundamental transformation as they wrestle with the challenges of climate change. The earth is warming and that can cause large, potentially hazardous changes in the climate… Read more »

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What Good is the Eiffel Tower in the Middle of Your Refinery?

One of the best ways to make sure the design of your refinery is going to look and perform the way you think it should is to perform front end… Read more »

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Ground Fault Protection for Utility-Scale Solar Arrays

Solar-photovoltaic (PV) electricity generation has grown by leaps and bounds over just the last half-decade, and offers tremendous promise for meeting both growing energy demands and the need to reduce… Read more »

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Secure Power Beyond the Data Center

In today’s digital world, when we think about problems around power interruptions, the systems that are top of mind for many of us are information technology (IT) systems, meaning everything… Read more »

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Dream Big: The future of reliability for utilities

Reliability is at the forefront of utilities’ concerns, and rightly so. People expect power to flow 24/7 and any interruption is disruptive for customers and costly for utilities in terms… Read more »

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What will Medium Voltage switchgear look like in the future?

The electrical industry is without doubt one of the most conservative in terms of updating technology, including medium voltage (MV) and high voltage (HV) switchgear. Why is that? For one… Read more »

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Joint Commission: 10 most cited Healthcare facility standards

At my last HAAHE (Houston Area Association of Healthcare Engineers) meeting I watched a dynamic presentation by Susan B. Laughlin, FASHE, CHFM, CHSP who spoke about the most frequently cited… Read more »

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Microgrids: Back in the Spotlight

Consider three trends: Recent extreme weather events that left thousands without electricity for days Willingness to reduce dependency on imported fossil fuels by switching to local renewable energies Desperately slow… Read more »

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Substation Cyber Security: How Vulnerabilities Create Asset Management Challenges

When cyber threats were less of an issue than they are today, the relationship between a utility and a vendor was based on discussions about bugs that could be found… Read more »

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Secure Power services: why a smooth “handover” is vital to a lifecycle approach

Commercial and industrial assets such as ships, airports, manufacturing plants, oil rigs, or hospitals involve highly specialized systems that need power protection and cooling to keep these mission-critical applications secure… Read more »

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Is Your Energy Glide Slope Set for a Smooth Landing?

Glide slope is a term used to describe the path of flight that ensures a safe and successful landing for an airplane. It can also be used to describe a… Read more »

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Energy Storage: So Much More Than Just a Battery

Energy storage technology – meaning stationary batteries – has been in the news quite a bit in recent months, with CEOs of large companies making bold predictions about how the… Read more »

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The Future State: Growth of Distributed Energy Resources and Microgrids

If you’re involved in operating a distribution network, you know that there has never been a more challenging time for utility companies. The pace of change is only accelerating, driven… Read more »

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Control corrosion to extend the life of medium voltage switchgear

Extending a medium voltage switchgear’s lifespan by making it reliable and fail-safe saves money, reduces downtime, and improves performance, but what’s the best way to do it? The intended lifespan… Read more »

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Energy Storage: A Better Solution for Reducing Demand Response Charges

As mentioned in a previous blog post, there’s been a lot of talk of late about energy storage technology and the role it promises to play in our energy future…. Read more »

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Technology pushes solar one step forward; Utilities pull it one step back

If you’ve seen one trade show, you’ve seen them all. They all have the dull roar of a hundred simultaneous conversations and the drifting smell of $8 hot dogs. Last… Read more »

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Home Energy Management Systems Are Poised to Have an Outsized Affect on Energy Sustainability Efforts

The market for home energy management systems (HEMS) is poised for rapid growth over the next several years, the result of trends including the need for energy conservation and optimal… Read more »

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What is Smart Grid? Distributech wants to know.

The just concluded Consumer Electronics Show was a massive showcase of cool new ways to use electricity. It is unlikely the attendees and exhibitors thought of it that way, though… Read more »

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4 Best Practices for Utilities to Keep Customer Data Secure

Most utilities are protective of customer data and always have been. That’s a good thing because these days they have no choice. As utilities increasingly adopt smart technology – including… Read more »

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Winterizing Your Energy Management Strategy

Mark Twain is often credited with the familiar quote, “Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.” He might be right, but it doesn’t mean that’s the… Read more »

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Demand Response by Any Name

Would you buy a car named “Drinks Gas, Turns Wheels, Spews Fumes”? Well, maybe, if you’re an engineer; otherwise “Cobra” does a much better job firing the imagination and generating… Read more »

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The Transformation From DNO to DSO

If you work for a distribution network operator (DNO), you probably spend a lot of time planning for the future. That’s partly because modern distribution networks are no longer designed… Read more »

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Integration is key in smart utility operation

I posted earlier about utilities experiencing a convergence of Operations Technology (OT) and Information Technology (IT) that is bringing together applications and devices in new ways and tying together systems… Read more »

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