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Smart Grid Project Completed in New York

Posted on the 16 April 2014 by Dailyfusion @dailyfusion
DOE recognizes the completion of the NYISO smart grid project in Rensselaer, New YorkDOE recognizes the completion of the NYISO smart grid project in Rensselaer, New York. On the photo: NYC lights from the observation deck of the Empire State Building. (Credit: Flickr @ Richard Gould

The Energy Department yesterday recognized the completion of New York Independent System Operator’s (NYISO) smart grid and control center project in Rensselaer, New York.

“A smarter and stronger electric grid will help save consumers money, strengthen our energy security and build a more sustainable, cleaner energy future,” said Assistant Secretary Hoffman. “The New York Independent System Operator’s smart grid project represents a critical investment in the resiliency and efficiency of our power grid, while giving utilities the tools they need to make sure local communities and businesses have access to affordable and reliable electricity.”

With support from the Recovery Act, the Energy Department partnered with utilities across the United States to deploy grid sensors—known as synchrophasors—that monitor the flow of electricity with and provide continuous and near-real-time information on the grid’s health and security. These measurements allow system operators and owners to identify and respond to potential disturbances quickly and effectively—improving overall grid reliability, safeguarding against power outages and enabling faster restoration of power.

A phasor measurement unit (PMU) or synchrophasor is a device which measures the electrical waves on an electricity grid, using a common time source for synchronization. Synchrophasors measure voltages and currents at principle intersecting locations (critical substations) on a power grid and can output accurately time-stamped voltage and current phasors. Because these phasors are truly synchronized, synchronized comparison of two quantities is possible, in real time. In power engineering, these are also commonly referred to as synchrophasors and are considered one of the most important measuring devices in the future of power systems.

Leveraging a $38 million Recovery Act investment, NYISO and eight transmission owners deployed new synchrophasors and smart grid technologies across the state. The project installed new transmission capacitors to increase the ability of grid operators to regulate transmission voltages and advanced software and tools that help NYISO engineers conduct extensive and detailed system modeling and analysis. The new control center will give NYISO and neighboring grid control areas a far more expansive and in-depth view of the power grid.

According to the DOE’s press release, the Energy Department is committed to working with utilities and state and local governments to build a more reliable, resilient and secure electric grid, including giving grid operators and owners better insight into the power grid. The Department worked with utilities across the country to increase the number of synchrophasors five-fold—from less than 200 in 2009 to over 1,700 today.

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