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IEEE Smart Grid Newsletter - July 2012

Pennsylvania’s Large-Scale Pilot Project

The initial focus is on improved distribution management in the area around Harrisburg. Ultimately, monitoring devices and wireless communications will be installed throughout the utility's operating area to improve reliability and efficiency and allow for more flexible and capable management. The U.S. Department of Energy, which has provided support for the project with funds from the 2009 stimulus bill, is being kept closely informed of progress.

Storage: An Indispensable Ingredient in Future Energy

Energy storage can contribute to the smart grid by facilitating integration of renewable sources and provision of important ancillary services. At the same time, energy storage cannot really be exploited to its fullest potential without a smart grid infrastructure capable of managing bidirectional energy flows. Because of that reciprocal relationship, energy storage and the smart grid represent an indispensable synergy.

Real-Time Ampacity and Ground Clearance Software

The temperatures of transmission lines have traditionally been estimated by means of ampacity tables that are calculated from expected average weather conditions and values that have been considered valid for a whole season. But in reality, a conductor's position and temperature vary greatly with weather conditions over much shorter time intervals. One solution is to base real-time estimates on instrument readings, but an even better method uses software to calculate the mechanical and thermal status of the conductor.

New Protection Method for Automated Distribution Feeders

The constant variations in line and source topologies found in a typical automated distribution feeder can create design challenges for protection engineers, especially those using traditional overcurrent protection methods. A novel approach using differential protection recently debuted on an A&N Electric Cooperative feeder in Virginia, demonstrating the ability to reduce the number of required settings groups without compromising feeder flexibility or the speed, accuracy, and selectivity of protection.

About the Smart Grid Newsletter

A monthly publication, the IEEE Smart Grid Newsletter features practical and timely technical information and forward-looking commentary on smart grid developments and deployments around the world. Designed to foster greater understanding and collaboration between diverse stakeholders, the newsletter brings together experts, thought-leaders, and decision-makers to exchange information and discuss issues affecting the evolution of the smart grid.

Contributors

Steve GelatkoSteve Gelatko is Manager, Distribution Asset Management for PPL Electric Utilities, in Allentown, PA. His responsibilities include system reliability...
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Francesco A. AmorosoFrancesco Amoroso is a research assistant in the Department of Electronics, Computer Sciences and Systems at the University of Calabria, Italy.
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Gregorio CappuccinoGregorio Cappuccino, a senior member of IEEE, is an associate professor oin the Department of Electronics, Computer Science and Systems...
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Kevin M. KleinKevin Klein, a senior applied mechanics engineer in the energy industry, is pursuing a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology.
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Paul L. SpringerPaul Springer, PE, is chief engineer in Southwire's overhead transmission engineering department. Prior to his move to Southwire...
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W. Z. BlackW. Z. Black, an IEEE fellow, has degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois and Purdue University. He is a Regents Professor...
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Thierry F. GodartThierry Godart is president of the Siemens Smart Grid Division in North America. A graduate of the École Supérieure d'Electricité...
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Andre SmitAndre Smit has worked in the protective relaying field for more than two decades. He studied at Vaal Triangle Technikon in South Africa...
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