Utilities

The Secure Power Difference: Risk Mitigation and Beyond

In our first post, we defined what industrial secure power is and some vertical industry applications, but this leaves the all important question of “why” secure power solutions are needed…. Read more »

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Soon at a Distribution System Near You: the Next-Generation, and Smarter, OMS

One of the things that makes a grid smarter, is smart outage restoration. Nearly every North American utility relies on some form of an Outage Management System (OMS) to help… Read more »

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Demand Response IS Supply Chain Management

Let’s acknowledge Demand Response for what it really is: the premier tool for supply chain management of electrons. Really? I know. DR came into its own by its use in… 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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Demand Response is Bigger than You Think

If you’ve been in the Demand Response Business since, oh, 2000 or so, it seems old hat. Never mind that Telecom deregulation took decades to deliver on its promises or… 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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Stability is a Stress Free Word

“Stability” is a stress-free word. This is especially true for anyone involved in managing the power grid at any level. This includes medium voltage network operators, who like their systems… Read more »

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A Spark in the Dark

In these cold winter nights, it’s nice to find lights greeting you on the way home. I did not realize how much reassuring and useful they are, until a couple… Read more »

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What has Water got to do with Internet?

Internet of Things (IoT) uses machine-to-machine (M2M) technology to connect objects to each other via  the Internet, analyze their data, and communicate results to other objects (your Smart phone or… Read more »

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There is no TEAM in SMART GRID. Five E’s can change that.

During my college years, I earned money selling encyclopedias door-to-door. Did pretty well, too; so well that a competitor offered me a job representing a far more familiar brand. This… Read more »

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How Utilities Can Glean More Value from their Data

To become more effective at marketing, utilities would do well to follow the lead of Internet giants like Amazon. Amazon does a great job at suggesting products you may want… Read more »

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So you have old switchgear installed: what next?

The question on spending a significant portion of finances in maintenance and services of one’s installation has baffled many of us. There are no second thoughts on the fact regularly scheduled maintenance,… Read more »

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For Smart Meters to Realize Their Potential, Utilities Must Address Valid Customer Concerns

Smart meters are laying the groundwork to enable an era of smarter, connected-homes. There’s a huge influx of smart meters being installed – they now cover more than 43 percent… Read more »

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Electric Utilities: Boost Communications Reliability with MPLS

An efficient, resilient communication infrastructure is key to utilities’ ability to control and maintain electrical power distribution and manage equipment in the grid. Success depends on a communication platform and… Read more »

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Choosing the Right Communication Architecture for Smart Distribution

You’ve read it a thousand times – about the energy transition and the pressure for electric utilities to simultaneously accommodate new distributed generation and increase power quality, all while improving… Read more »

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Wiser Air EcoIQ: Game-changing Technology for Customers and Utilities Alike

The Wiser Air thermostat from Schneider Electric just keeps getting smarter. Schneider Electric has added technology called EcoIQ that enables Wiser Air (North America) to learn what temperatures a homeowner… Read more »

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Smart, Connected Thermostats: A Better Mousetrap for the Energy Industry

Build a better mousetrap, they say, and the world will beat a path to your door. This saying came to mind recently when I was reading an article about a… Read more »

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How Microgrids Help Tackle Global Energy Challenges

Microgrids are proving to be a solution for many energy challenges — whether the issue is energy reliability, independence, accessibility, or cost optimization. Let’s look at these at a high… Read more »

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Residential Energy Reduction Requires Changing Customer Behavior

At the core of any utility demand response (DR) or energy efficiency (EE) program is one simple fact: good results depend on changing people’s behavior. That’s a challenge, because habits… Read more »

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The IEC 61850 standard: The force behind a less costly way to engineer a utility substation

As Ethernet protocols become more common inside of utility substations, the tendency to distribute functions across many different devices is increasing. Since open standards do not restrict designers to proprietary… Read more »

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Protection network redundancy protocols

Historically, protection and control (P&C) schemes relied on hardwired communication: direct, point-to-point connections between Intelligent Electronic Devices (IEDs). The problem with that approach is it’s difficult to correct, modify, and… Read more »

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IIoT, Mobility, Cloud, Enterprise APM – A Look Back at 2015 and What’s Coming

The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), cloud services, mobility, enterprise APM and remote monitoring are just some of the trending topics you’ve no doubt heard a lot about this year…. Read more »

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Leverage IIoT to Predict Asset Failure and Reduce Cost

Technology triggers like the Industrial Internet of Things, big data analytics, mobility and workflow collaboration represent new opportunities for significant improvements in asset reliability, efficiency and safety in the power… Read more »

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6 Ways Smart Grid Technology Can Solve Medium Voltage Substation Challenges – Part 2

One of the greatest challenges utilities face is how to introduce smart grid technology toadapt to a decarbonized, decentralized, and digitized environment. MV/LV substationsare at the core of any electrical… Read more »

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Simulation is not just for video games!

Using the same software elements that provide ‘life-like’ video games designed for fun and relaxation, learning simulators reproduce on-the-job scenarios that go beyond surface-level learning of subject matter. They are… Read more »

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Developing a Business Case for Grid Automation – How hard can it be?

Everybody is looking for economic justification to support their smart grid investment actions. While there is a need for prudency and accuracy in projecting all of the costs and in capturing… Read more »

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Now trending in Europe: Utilities are discovering the benefits offered by demand response strategies

Following the example of the U.S. – the most mature market for demand response technologies – the utility industry in Europe is clearly on the verge of massive demand response… Read more »

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Smart, Connected Thermostats: A Better Mousetrap for the Energy Industry

Build a better mousetrap, they say, and the world will beat a path to your door. This saying came to mind recently when I was reading an article about a… Read more »

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How Can Utilities Save Energy in the Smart Grid Era?

We’ve all heard the buzzwords: smart grid, energy efficiency…and more. But for utility electrical distributors, applying smart grid technologies turns those buzzwords into practical solutions for common issues. Utilities today… 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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