When the power goes out, sometimes it can take a surprisingly long time to get the lights back on because faults can be hard to find. Slow power restoration is quite costly for utilities, and inconvenient for customers.
"Usually, half the time to fix a fault is spent locating the problem," said Siemens Power Systems Protection Consultant Roy Moxley.
At DistribuTECH, Moxley explained how Siemens has been working with Oncor Electric Delivery to take data from relays on a distribution network distribution and integrate it into the distribution management system. The result: a better fault location system that helps crews find and repair faults in minutes rather than hours.
"We've done tests using data from real-world faults. In most cases, we identified the fault location down to the nearest distribution pole," Moxley said. "It's easy to see a cracked insulator when you only have to look at one pole -- but it's much harder to spot if you have to look at three miles of poles."
More about Siemens at DistribuTECH 2014.
Watch the video here at Smart Grid Watch Blog.