I posted previously about the challenge of managing load and utilizing Distributed Energy Resources (DERs), including renewables and energy storage, to maintain the margin between significantly increasing demand and system capacity and satisfy regulatory requirements. Cutting-edge projects are showing that utilities implementing a Smart Grid control system can, in effect, increase system capacity without adding traditional, large-scale generation that is costly and carbon emitting.
The solution relies on a real-time network model, based on current, complete, and correct GIS data, consumer load data, plus data incorporated from operational systems such as a SCADA system. This fully-integrated Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS) has been deployed by utilities primarily for its analytical tools that recommend the most optimal device operations, or to optionally automate device operations and provide planning capability to improve network efficiency and reliability.
Now, more utilities are applying ADMS to also manage demand. They can –
- Apply Volt/VAR control to reduce feeder voltage automatically with no effect on the consumer
- Safely deploy distributed generation (DG), dispersed generation typically less than 10MW, to help back-feed a tripped or overloaded feeder
- Count on accurate load profiling and load forecasting based on integrated weather feeds for network forecasting and effective solar and wind integration
- Create network simulation that helps forecast medium-term and long-term load and plan effective deployment of DERs, including storage systems and microgrids
As a unified solution with a single infrastructure and user interface that supports enterprise operations consistency and efficiency, an ADMS also helps utilities realize reliability and security in a mission-critical environment.
So, there you have it – the ADMS solution designed to make grid operations smarter and more secure also supports a utility’s sustainability strategy. Now that’s efficient energy management!