The Power Events Analysis process has come a long way in recent years. Many elements we take for granted, such as automation, were barely utilized just ten years ago. During that time, the only automated process was identifying power quality disturbances and collecting event and waveform data.
Investigating the order of events to determine where the problem originated was a labor-intensive and time-consuming procedure. To further complicate the matter, facility management teams often lacked personnel with the required advanced skills to perform manual waveform analysis.
My previous post examined how Power Events Analysis minimizes power disturbances and unplanned downtime. In this second post, I review how recent technological advances and greater digitization in Power Events Analysis reduce recovery time by three.
The evolution Power Events Analysis
While not new, energy and power management system (EPMS) solutions have shown increasing improvements in their performance, scalability, and accessibility. But until recently, the software tools provided for alarm management and Power Events Analysis have largely remained unchanged.
Fast-forward to today, interpreting and diagnosing power-related problems has been significantly simplified using alarm and waveform analytics.
EPMS software programs have advanced so far that they can automatically classify power disturbances, identify their origin, quantify their load loss impact, and deduce the probable cause of the incident by utilizing specialized data analytics.
As a result of these technological advancements, Power Events Analysis is now easier and more effective than ever before.
A closer look at today’s most advanced Power Events Analysis capabilities
- Time-synchronization and millisecond event accuracy
Accurately capturing high-speed power event data requires devices to have:
- Non-volatile memory for storing timestamped events onboard the device
- Millisecond timestamp resolution for event logging
- Time-synchronizable, high-precision onboard clock
Millisecond resolution timestamping must synchronize to the same reference clock. Doing so can ensure the sequence of events is in the right order and has correct timestamps relative to each other. In cases with a robust Ethernet network, Network Time Protocol (NTP) can provide correct timestamping ranging from 0.2 ms to 10 ms. At the same time, Precision Time Protocol (PTP) allows for even more precise timestamping of 0.2 µs and 10 µs.
- Intelligent event aggregation, filtering, and shelving
Advancements in EPMS software apply event aggregation analytics combined with filtering and alarm shelving capabilities to help minimize information overload caused by:
- Large volumes of alarms presented to end users
- Duplicate and overlapping information
- Ambiguous sources of information
- Unclear relationship between different information sources
- Irrelevant information
- Smart “incident” creation
EPMS software first eliminates the decision-making on which issue to tackle by aggregating related events into representative “incidents.”
This streamlines the volume of information operators must review and accelerates the decision-making process and response time. Meanwhile, engineers can still delve deeper into the individual events if they want to analyze them further.
- User-configurable event filters
User-configurable filters can eliminate irrelevant event information from being presented to specific users, creating more trust in the data received. Alarm management and response times can be improved by configuring different alarm views to the unique needs of individual users or groups.
- Alarm shelving
With EPMS software, users can manually eliminate active alarm listings. As a result, operators can leverage readily available insights to prioritize alarms better.
- Automatic waveform analysis
EPMS software advancements can automatically analyze waveforms captured from power meters and circuit breaker trip units. Now complex sinusoidal data can convert into a simple, tangible, and understandable format. Outage impacts and their likelihood can be quantified by deducting how much load was lost or gained with the event.
- Timeline analysis
With a specialized graphical user interface, EMPS enables engineers to examine the order of power events and identify their sources.
We have witnessed significant advancements in Power Events Analysis tools to drive efficiency gains and reduce recovery times. But we also believe that Power Events Analysis is not done evolving. We expect Power Events Analysis to continue transforming as EPMS software is augmented by artificial intelligence-based decision support and more domain-specific computing for advanced power diagnostics.
Eventually, we see EPMS systems evolving to a level where they are entirely self-aware and can operate autonomously. We expect they will also be able to make configuration changes and, in real-time, be capable of adjusting operational settings to optimize efficiency and reliability. To learn more, download our white paper, ‘How Power Events Analysis makes facility operations and maintenance more effective.’
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