Author Archives: Claudia Hansen

The Benefits of Having Improved Reliability of Speed Distribution and Automated Networks

In a private network setting, there are no unauthorized traffic that can travel around the network. With this in mind, this can totally eliminate the risk of having unsolicited traffic that can come from external sources. All of the data that is sent to and from several devices is now configured to a set private network that is segregated and separated from other sources of traffic. However, in such a private network like this, the customer can get a pool of set machine to machine (MSM) data plans that is designed for the DA application.

In conjunction with these type of applications, different cellular modems and routers are now designed through the solution given by the supplier and now being used for the IPsec tunnels, firewalls, and special filtering to have different sets of data to be securely transmitted between data and field devices. The MSM data plans for different DA solutions are designed to have a well defined and tested ways to support various types of applications.

For example, a manufacturer’s system may opt to use the small Ethernet IEC 61850 Generic Object Oriented Substation Event (GOOSE) type of messages to be able to communicate and transfer the information from peer to peer between the pole-mounted field controller devise or servers. This happens on the cost-efficient machine to machine data plans that are build to support different applications such as DTT, FLISR, and ATS that happens in different private cellular networks.

Several DA systems heavily depend on the available communication lines to be able to perform as it was originally designed for. As a failsafe, once the system successfully detects that a certain model was unusually disconnected from its cellular network, the system will successfully automatically give notification to the operator when the link is down. This service notification will give support to the customers to be able to have a better maintenance in their communication system lines that will variably support OT applications.

For the progressive electrical utility, a good combination of the cellular communications and the recent approaches to the new distribution systems feeder protection and automation stars gathering improved system reliability. On the other hand, the traditional approach for this system comprises of two distinctly different system functions: protection first and then automation.

The recent protection system should disconnect from the faulty networks that coordinates the overcurrent tripping that has auto-reclosing actions. Once the automated system successfully locates the faulty segment from the feeder, it isolates the faulted segments and it now executes the automatic closure of the field then it transfers switch to be able to provide the alternate energy from a different power source to functioning feeder segments. This is usually described as self-healing.

The recent approach disregards the complexity of adaptation of different coordinated overcurrent settings on several devices once the topology undergoes change. It then will be executed by the automated system. For this to happen, the automated and protection sytems should be closely monitored and coordinated in different actions – both in protection and automation. This helps to have an effective operation and protection for these types of automation actions to be executed successfully.

The Progress NEMA is Undertaking Because of the Coalition of Varying Sections

Like the electrical power grid is the same with the development of umbrella systems of systems together with millions of integrated and interconnected parts, the NEMA utility products & systems division is geared towards the mobility of integrated coalition of different product sections.

Nowadays, this division is geared in the creation of a leadership committee that is responsible for the mobility within NEMA organization. This will help NEMA to have a specific focus on having a product-centered technical organization to one system that may look like a system-wide approach in terms of its strategic planning and problem solving. When NEMA utilizes its power to have all the work being coordinated coming from individual product sectors – its members benefit the most. This example includes the initiatives of the workforce development, the existence of internet of things and several government relations.

This concept of having a divison-level group leadership is fundamentally based on two different NEMA divisions involved in the operation under the guidance of its executive leadership group. To name, the groups are: NEMA lighting divison and the medical imaging & technology alliance or what we call the MITA.

Under strict guidance of the leadership committee, the NEMA division is geared to develop and oversee the three-year strategy that includes the delineated goals and different methodologies that is directly related to the digitization of power grid. Its preparation is because of the fact that it brings electrification of several new industries. Once the electrical power grid started to develop into self-healing, self-driving system, the committee will now determine what exact role the NEMA has together with its members. The different components of this strategy would be business, policy, and other technical objectives.

The activities of the committee might include some engagement from outside of the groups that effectively represent the utility community, also the formal studies and some data collections. This also includes some of the briefings done in form of different business strategy groups that comes with some expertise from the field. The different areas or place of focus/priorities should be carefully determined by the committee responsible for this and they should include a strategy-based work. This should include the inclusion of the digital twinning, different development of several practices needed for the several equipment production modeling. This also includes some deep-dive analysis of some mentioned utility rate structures. The NEMA committee should now consider the different policy activities involving the former grid modernization leadership council. Some of the specific activities involved in the engagement of utility commissions should be on the same level with the other state-level policymakers. There will also be some written and verbal comments about different federal agencies and responsible federal policymakers. The other briefings with other entities that helps in the governance of bulk power market like the regional transmission operators and coordination should also contribute.

How to Have Control System with Style? Part 1

When a design engineer would like to implement and design a control system with integration project, he/she should start with a set of goals or specifications. These goals should determine the preferences of the end-user and this should be communicated efficiently to ensure that final output satisfies the expectations of all stakeholders in a company. This gives of a good start for any design engineer when specifications are carefully developed and implemented. It ensures the highest success probability of the project and it makes sure that in the long haul, the control system can be maintained and operates efficiently.

When designing a new control system, the easiest one to develop are the hard-side specifications. Why? Because there are many resources available for this one. Pre-built sections for controllers and software packages in a control system are in the resources of Construction Specifications Institute (CSI). Once an engineer cannot find the detail that he/she desires, other control system hardware and software sellers can also provide detailed sections about hard-side specifications. Once the end user are looking for bids from several seller or vendors of this system, the specifications the company would like to have must be carefully developed and consider so that these can be met by several bidders.

The real challenge comes when a company or an end user would like to set the specifications on the soft-side of controls. To guide them in the decision-making process, they should start with a few basic questions:

What design should be considered for the screen?

How is the controller is going to be used by the maintenance or engineering personnel?

The structure of tags and operating pump colors are hardly addressed in the specifications. These are the elements which determines the UI (user interface) of the control system.

Once these guidelines are answered, the next step of action is to start the layout with a style guide. Style guides has been existing for a very long time on other fields. There are The Associated Press Stylebook, MLA Handbook for research papers, and in marketing field where fonts, colors, and logos for branding are also guided & monitored across all social media platforms. In this scenario, style guide is also appropriate and applicable.

With this in mind, there is not limitation what elements and considerations should be added in a control system style guide. However, the following are six areas where there should be standardization of style and these elements has proven to have the most return on investment:

  1. Color

Like the usual traffic lights, red signifies stop and green means go. With this in mind, mechanical systems and electrical systems also applies the same principles. The main goal of color coding is to keep the operators and personnel safe in company operations. The color does not only signify coding but it should be well implemented in the company processes.

To start the process of deciding which colors to use for guidelines, determine the list of colors used in a facility where the control system will be used. Look for painted process pipes, pilot lights, control panels, stack lights, etc. The colors used should be familiar with the personnel for a more efficient use of the control guide and better operations.