Intelligent Utility Magazine November/December 2010
In This Issue
  • NRECA launches massive smart grid demonstration project
    PROVIDING A "MEMBERSHIP TEST BED" ORGANIZATIONAL capability, the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) is today actively helping to advance its electric cooperative members' technological footing through a voluntary nationwide smart grid demonstration project involving more than a dozen NRECA-affiliated co-ops.The project was assembled by the NRECA on the strength of a $33.9-...
  • APS builds flexibility into its smart grid definition
    Resilient organization: APS builds flexibility into its smart grid definition
    WITH MORE THAN A MILLION RETAIL CUStomers and 7,200 employees in 2009, and more than 42,000 square miles of service territory, Arizona Public Service Company (APS) is certainly no small fry in the utility world.But APS proves big doesn't mean slow-particularly when talking about smart grid. For APS, smart grid comes down to being a resilient organization with the flexibility to adapt to...
  • GWP to deploy smart electric and water meters
    The first elecgtric utility in the nation to receive a Smart Grid Investment Grant (SGIG) from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Glendale Water & Power (GWP) is embarking on an ambitious demonstration project it hopes will lay the groundwork for a city run entirely on smart energy.The City of Glendale AMI-Smart Grid Initiative is a $51...
  • For Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative, it's all about the services
    In 2003, when comtemplating the rural utility's options for sustainably moving forward, the management team at Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative-headquartered in Bastrop, Texas-came to a decision that, over time, has proven its wisdom in placing the utility on a solid footing for a fully functioning smart-grid future.But things didn't necessarily look quite so rosy at the time, when Bluebonnet...
  • The crystal ball is always a little murkey as we approach December and attempt to peer into the foggy depths of the year to come. It's always that way, despite our best efforts to define what the future will bring. It reminds me a lot of those coastal California "I can see for miles and miles" days, when the marine layer abruptly rolls in, and even seeing across the street (or, in the case of the...
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  • Venture capitalists seek opportunity in the land of five 9s
    Smart money + smart grid: Venture capitalists seek opportunity
    VENTURE CAPITALISTS PURSUING SMART grid opportunities are so varied in their approaches they might be said to mimic the proliferation of species in the Galapagos Islands.Success in their endeavor depends on a Darwinian adaptation to the market, as they seek unexploited niches and nascent or overlooked opportunities.That said, venture capitalists obviously focus on thriving, not merely surviving....
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  • Distribution management systems provide holistic view of the system
    Today's electricity grid is designed based on a vertically integrated supply model with dispatchable centralized generation and distributed consumption with no generation resources on the distribution network.Distribution networks tend to be radial with mostly unidirectional power flows and "passive" operation. Their primary role is to deliver energy from the transmission substation to the end...
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  • PSE&G identifies faults with advanced loop scheme
    Pacific Service Electric & Gas (PSE&G) has long been proud of its reputation of delivering reliable electricity to 2.1 million customers throughout New Jersey. So when industry reliability metrics SAIFI (System Average Interruption Frequency) and MAIFI ( Momentary Average Interruption Frequency) started to decline about 10 years ago, PSE&G started looking for a solution, which Dick...
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  • Intelligent financing creates new options for grid modernization
    Improving the delivery of electricity over the existing strained electric power grid through grid modernization-"smart grid"-is a national priority, but it is in danger of becoming another victim of the financial crisis. Federal economic stimulus funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) directed toward the goal of smart grid will soon be depleted. The recent burst of...
  • ConEdison's ETRM software system changes business processes
    Streamlining financial functions: ConEdison's ETRM software system
    UTILITIES OFTEN PREFER NOT TO BE ON THE bleeding edge of new technology, opting instead to be fast followers when it comes to game-changing, high-tech innovations that can change the face of the industry by introducing new efficiencies.That's not the case when it comes to New York-based ConEdison.The utility recently implemented an energy trading and risk management (ETRM) software system...
  • Blazing the path for interconnection standards
    The promise of the smart grid is tightly entwined with its ability to engage renewable energy sources on wide scale. The smart grid's great potential benefits-to enhance the reliability of electricity delivery, to reduce the net costs of power for consumers, to support more stable and sustainable national energy strategies, to lessen the environmental impact of humanity's power needs-all depend,...
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  • Smackdown, or merely a matter of choice?
    In the same way that one smart grid does not fit the needs of all utilities, neither can one communications network do the job for all.There has been a lot of buzz around Wi-Fi and WiMAX. Some say it's akin to comparing apples to oranges, and I would have to agree. It all comes down to the business case for each utility, and what type of telecommunications protocol-direct client connections over...
  • NV Energy will measure transformer loads
    Travis Johnson grew up in an engineering family and remembers living at the base of Grand Coulee Dam. Later, he lived near Hoover Dam, where his father worked as an electrical engineer. "I thought engineering was pretty cool," Johnson said.Johnson earned his own electrical engineering degree and has spent two decades in various roles at NV Energy, which is headquartered in Reno, Nevada. NV Energy...
  • Capturing a use-it-or-lose-it source
    The power sector may have another tool in its arsenal to meet tomorrow's energy demand. Scientists say the recycling of wasted energy could supply much-needed generation capacity while also limiting the release of heat-trapping emissions.Consider that for every BTU of coal or natural gas burned in a combustion turbine only 35 percent of that is converted into useful power. The other 65 percent is...