Proactively resolve outages with advanced outage management capabilities

Outages may be a fact of life but that doesn’t mean you’re powerless against them. With the right information and communication capabilities in your outage management system, your control center can play an active role in minimizing their frequency, duration, and impact.

Welcome back to our blog series discussing the SurvalentONE ADMS platform’s ability to increase the safety and reliability of your power supply. If you’ve just discovered our blog, check out our previous posts to learn more about FLISR; Dynamic Voltage Regulation and Power Factor Control; and SmartVU, Product Development System, and Data Forwarding.

This week, we’ll share how SurvalentONE OMS, our integrated outage management system, provides a centralized source of information and functionality to help you:

  • Empower operators and dispatchers to make better, fact-based decisions
  • Enable proactive maintenance and initiate repair activities faster
  • Enhance communication with all stakeholders

(Learn how Oakville Hydro uses SurvalentONE OMS to better manage outage-related activities and deliver real-time information to customers.)

Empower operators and dispatchers to make better, fact-based decisions

The most accurate, timely decisions are based on a holistic understanding of your distribution grid’s current state, its history, and work currently underway. This principle guided many enhancements to our outage management capabilities, which enable your team to better collect, document, visualize, and use comprehensive information in their outage management processes. Your team can:

  • Better understand the type, location, and status of jobs. Users can filter jobs by type and status and view the results as icons on the map.
  • View the call, outage and service history of a customer. They can review the history of call records from a meter, as well as the service history of meters or streetlights, along with key details such as time of the first call or ticket creation, number of calls, type (i.e. outage, service, emergency), description, and comments. They can also export the service history to CSV or PDF for reporting purposes.
  • Quickly access network and device information. Operators can now view a list of all power-off meters in the system with details such as the service address, status, transformer number, and connect/disconnect status. They can also view more information about streetlights including ownership, addresses, and lamp types.
  • Stay on top of important KPIs. Users can incorporate current and historical information into outage management decision-making, with new KPIs available on sustained and momentary outages cases, emergency and service tickets and calls, outage calls, and outage portal access.
  • Greater situational awareness in the control room. By being able to view comprehensive damage reports from the field, control room operators and dispatchers can now make more informed decisions about what the next steps should be.
  • Track all changes. Satisfy auditors with a secure record of dispatcher edits and actions in the outage management system, including changes to cases, tickets, call records, jobs, and damage reports.

Enable proactive maintenance and initiate repair activities faster

SurvalentONE’s outage management capabilities help you maximize uptime through preventative action and faster response times. Ensure proactive inspections of locations and assets on your smart grid, particularly those whose KPIs indicate they may be at risk. When outages are unavoidable, you can reduce their durations by quickly identifying the location and dispatching repair teams.

  • Create inspection tours. Dispatchers can define any number of waypoints to be assessed for damage, faults, or asset management purposes, and then assign crews, instructions, and details for the unmanned aerial vehicle, if appropriate.
  • Conduct planned outages with switch orders. Operators can specify the planned time of execution for switch orders and corresponding restoration orders so you can inform your customers in advance of planned outages.

 Enhance communications with all stakeholders

Transparency is a critical factor in reducing outages and minimizing customer complaints. With our enhanced outage management capabilities, your customer service reps, field crew, control room operators, and customers can easily access and share information.

  • Set your CSRs up for success. Help your CSRs address customer concerns by providing outage and call history information for service locations, including the start time, duration, total number of affected customers, cause, and call record details. CSRs also have the option of pinging meters to determine their current status.
  • Deliver outage information by email. Keep key internal stakeholders, local government, emergency responders, and media on the same page with outage information emailed directly from SurvalentONE OMS.
  • Share service area information and KPIs in the Customer Outage Portal. Keep customers informed with a visual representation of the service area and a summary of the total number of outage cases, how many customers were affected, and how many are still out of power.
  • Define alarm points and zones. Specify which alarm points and zones will be used when outage management alarms are raised to ensure that the right people will see it.

Click here to learn more about SurvalentONE’s outage management system. For more information about our current release, download our PR 18.0 release kit from the Survalent Support Portal.

If you have questions on outage management or want to leave feedback for the team, share your thoughts below. We’d love to hear from you.

Young

Collaborate, update, visualize, and share data for optimum system performance

Behind every well-functioning control room, you’ll find two critical factors: comprehensive data and good coffee.

While we can’t help you with the coffee, we certainly know a thing or two about putting the right data in front of teams of users, whether they’re working on the designs that underpin control room processes or in the control room itself. In this week’s blog, we’ll share how our SmartVU graphical user interface, Product Development System (PDS), and Data Forwarding capabilities have been enriched to help keep your control room operating smoothly with:

  • More data sharing and collaboration capabilities
  • Improved navigation and usability to increase efficiency and productivity
  • Enhanced edit and design capabilities in an offline QA environment

Empower teams with a UI designed for collaboration and ease-of-use

The simplest way to make data more accessible is a single user interface for your ADMS. Whether your team is editing in an offline environment or making split-second decisions in your control room, they’ll be most productive and effective when they’re using a common UI. (Learn how SmartVU’s single, interactive view helps Oakville Hydro get the most out of its SCADA and OMS systems.)

With SmartVU, your team can easily view, manage, edit, and share information across design and production environments. This release adds to SmartVU’s editing capabilities to:

  • Maintain optimal readability, no matter what the map size. Sometimes you want the big picture and other times it’s the details you care about. Either way, SmartVU’s new minimum and maximum display size for status pmacros ensures key information is always easy to read. Zoom out without losing the visibility to view field points like elbows, fuses and switches, or zoom right in while clearly distinguishing between closely grouped devices.
  • Improve productivity and collaboration. Enable teams to complete work faster by converting single line diagrams and other views to submaps that can be edited by multiple users simultaneously.
  • Increase security with more timeout options. Whether you choose to timeout privileged users only or all system users, our new release gives you greater control over session lengths.

Protect your production system with offline design and testing

Operators need a system they can rely on for accuracy and uptime, with an intuitive user interface that enables them to quickly and easily navigate to the views, maps, and information they need.

But systems need to be configured, edited, and upgraded to maintain optimal performance and that introduces the potential for errors – unless you use SurvalentONE PDS. With SurvalentONE PDS, you can design the system to your needs, test it thoroughly, and approve proposed changes before taking them live so you can be confident your production system will work exactly as you need it to. The new release expands on our existing PDS capabilities to:

  • The PDS can now journal and publish changes made to:
    • Transformers and service locations imported from GIS
    • Edits made by the IED Wizard
    • Any DMS Catalog edits, including those made in Compositions, Conductor Types, Impedances, Constructions, Load Profiles, Time Curves, and Settings.
  • Gain a more complete understanding of edits performed in each project. Review comprehensive information in the Work Summary Report, including SCS edits; STC Explorer database edits such as points and RTUs; additions, modifications, and deletions of individual line sections; and the total number of changes per line section type.
  • Prevent conflicts. When multiple users collaborate on a project, it’s easy to make contradictory changes to data that can cause issues in production. SurvalentONE PDS eliminates the risk by preventing the edit of a command sequence if its referenced points are being edited by another project that has not been published yet.

Ensure your designs work with your network data 

When it comes to publishing changes into production, there’s no greater peace of mind than knowing they were created and tested using data from your own network.

Survalent’s Data Forwarding capabilities enable external support systems like SurvalentONE PDS or Operator Training Simulator (OTS) to use data from your active control system in their projects. The current release provides more control over Data Forwarding, including:

  • An option to automatically send and receive data upon system start-up
  • A choice of forwarding changes for all points or for telemetered points only
  • The ability to turn Data Forwarding on or off from within SmartVU

For more information about the current release, please download the PR 18.0 release kit from the Survalent Support Portal.

If you have questions or want to leave feedback for the team, share your thoughts in the Comments section below. We’d love to hear from you.

Young

Da Nang Power Company First to Deploy SurvalentONE FLISR in Vietnam

Implementation expected to reduce SAIFI by 43%

Denver, CO — 2018 IEEE PES T&D — Tuesday, April 17, 2018 — Survalent, a leading provider of advanced distribution management system (ADMS) software, today announced that Da Nang Power Company (DNPC) has completed the first phase of its SurvalentONE FLISR implementation. Phase 1 saw the successful implementation of FLISR on feeders serving the utility’s most critical customers, including two hospitals. The utility is now in the process of implementing SurvalentONE FLISR on its remaining feeders to improve the quality and reliability of electrical power supply for all its government, commercial, and residential customers.

DNPC is an electrical utility serving 300,000 customers in the city of Da Nang, Vietnam. This deployment, the first installation of SurvalentONE FLISR in Vietnam, puts DNPC at the forefront of utility technology in a country committed to modernizing its grid. Survalent’s local partner and integrator, My Phuong Trading Co. Ltd., is assisting DNPC to implement SurvalentONE FLISR on all of its feeders to enable faster fault identification, isolation, and automatic power resupply.

“All eyes are on DNPC as we are the first utility in Vietnam to successfully implement advanced DMS applications into our grid,” said Vo Hoa, deputy director of DNPC. “It was important that we select a vendor we could trust and software that was proven to meet our needs. Originally, we chose Survalent’s SCADA for our control room based on their reputation for delivering modern, reliable software at a low total cost of ownership. The application has been easy to use and configure and we’ve seen noticeable improvements in our control room operations; this gave us great confidence in selecting SurvalentONE FLISR for the next step in our modernization plan.”

Reliable power is vital to Da Nang’s local economy as the city is a popular tourist destination and stage for numerous international events. Previously, operators were required to manually isolate a fault’s location, change the grid connection, and transfer the power, which caused widespread and lengthy power interruptions.

“This project will help to ensure a safe, high-quality electrical supply for our customers,” continued Hoa. “We expect our SAIDI [system average interruption duration index] and SAIFI [system average interruption frequency index] to decrease by 16% and 43% respectively.”
“We’re proud to help advance the modernization of Vietnam’s power supply with the first-ever deployment of our FLISR solution to a Vietnamese utility,” said Steve Mueller, president and chief executive officer of Survalent. “It’s particularly gratifying to know that Da Nang is projected to realize such impressive outcomes as a result of the implementation.”

About Da Nang Power Company
DNPC was established in the year 1976, and is the only power company to supply electricity for more than 300,000 customers in Danang city, Vietnam at the voltage level of 22kV and 0.4kV. The annual electricity consumption in the year 2017 is 2.803 billion kWh. Its total number of employees is more than 800. Reliability indices are more and more important to DNPC because of the rapid increasing rate of tourism sector in the coming years.

About Survalent
Survalent is the most trusted provider of advanced distribution management systems (ADMS) software for electric, transit, gas and water/wastewater utilities across the globe. Over 600 utilities in 30 countries rely on the Survalent ONE platform to effectively operate, monitor, analyze, restore, and optimize operations. By supporting critical utility operations with a fully integrated solution, our customers have significantly improved operational efficiencies, customer satisfaction and network reliability. Survalent StationCentral, our comprehensive substation automation solution, delivers advanced control and monitoring for enhanced network performance and protection. Our unwavering commitment to excellence and to our customers has been the key to our success for over 60 years. To learn more, visit us at www.survalent.com. Follow us on Twitter @Survalent and LinkedIn.

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For media inquiries, please contact:

Survalent
press@survalent.com

Da Nang Power Company
pcdanang@cpc.vn

Conserve, reduce, and optimize with demand response applications

Customers today take power for granted … and that’s a good thing. It’s proof that you’re delivering a steady flow of power whenever and wherever they need it. But we know it’s not always easy. Fortunately, demand response technology that can shave peak load or address power factor issues like is available to make it easier.

In last week’s blog, we reviewed enhancements to FLISR that help you more precisely locate faults, isolate them, and reroute power to prevent sustained outages. This week, we’ll discuss the benefits of the latest updates that Dynamic Voltage Regulation (DVR) and Power Factor Control can bring to you and your customers.

Maintain optimal voltage

As every operator knows, the demand for power fluctuates on an hourly, daily, and seasonal basis. If reducing peak demand and addressing power factor issues in your network is part of your mandate, SurvalentONE demand response applications can help you maintain the ideal voltage at all times without the need for manual switching. (Learn how Scottsboro Electric Power Board uses voltage regulation to cut electricity costs and increase the stability of its distribution network.)

Our current release enhances the capabilities of SurvalentONE Dynamic Voltage Regulation and Power Factor Control to:

  • Provide operators with more control over functions to improve efficiency and effectiveness
  • Improve the accuracy of data to enable more informed decision-making
  • Precisely coordinate Dynamic Voltage Regulation and Power Factor Control schedules to optimize performance

Keep your operators focused on critical work

Control centre operators have enough on their plates without having to check the status of regulator groups, determine if they should continue to run in a suspended state, and manually disable them if not. The new Suspend Timer capability in SurvalentONE Dynamic Voltage Regulation lets you define the maximum number of minutes a regulator group can be suspended before it is automatically deactivated. The result? Your operators can concentrate on critical tasks without distraction. DVR can determine the optimal voltage level by leveraging the utility’s AMI network or end of line sensors to determine the real-time voltage level in the field.  The application can also communicate to these devices through standard industry interfaces, like MultiSpeak.  (Learn how Consolidated Electric Cooperative uses SurvalentONE DVR to ensure their field crews are working proactively, rather than reactively.)

Improve network stability

When running DVR, utilities want to ensure that the voltages between phases stay within a certain range as a large phase imbalance can cause feeder stability issues or potentially harm customer equipment. This was the rationale for adding an optional maximum phase unbalance to our dynamic voltage regulation capabilities.

Operators can now configure a maximum voltage difference between phases to help assess a candidate solution’s viability. The system will automatically discard any candidate solution that would produce a phase voltage imbalance greater than the specified limit. If the regulator group is already unbalanced, Dynamic Voltage Regulation will choose a solution that accomplishes the objective without causing further unbalance.

Take action faster with a better understanding of network conditions

Precision comes into play yet again in this enhancement to the ‘time since last update’ point calculation.

Previously, the point was updated only while the Dynamic Voltage Regulation group was in a running state, which meant that prolonged periods in the suspended state (e.g. from not being able to get readings from any of the meters) would not increment the count. This release enables earlier intervention by incrementing the point regardless of whether the Dynamic Voltage Regulation group is running or suspended. As a result, alarms or command sequences are triggered as soon as possible so operators can quickly take corrective action.

Reduce the risk of interference between Dynamic Voltage Regulation & Power Factor Control

SurvalentONE Dynamic Voltage Regulation and Power Factor Control are part of the same family of applications but, just like siblings, sometimes you have to separate them to keep things running smoothly.

With this release, operators can ensure that Power Factor Control and Dynamic Voltage Regulation run through their operations a few minutes apart to mitigate any potential interference between the two. Operators can still define intervals for Power Factor Control, but a new hourly offset function will automatically realign the schedule to the top of the hour to eliminate drift. As a result, operators can be confident that Power Factor Control will performs its corrections exactly when specified.

For more information about the current release, please download the PR 18.0 release kit from the Survalent Support Portal.

If you have questions or want to leave feedback for the team, be sure to share your thoughts in the Comments area.

Young

Put the ‘control’ back into your control room

It’s a challenging time to be a utility. Severe weather events are increasingly common and technology is placing more demands on your utility than ever before. At the same time, customer expectations for reliable power have never been higher.

We thought we’d share some insights on how the advanced features of our ADMS software can help you ensure a safer, more reliable power supply to your customers. Over the course of several posts, we’ll explore the upgrades and benefits of:

  • FLISR (fault location, isolation, and service restoration)
  • DVR (dynamic voltage regulation) and Power Factor Control
  • OMS (outage management system)
  • SmartVU graphical user interface
  • PDS (product development system)
  • Data Forwarding

Minimize the duration and impact of outages

When outages happen, your first priority is to restore power as quickly as possible to as many people as possible. But it can take hours to manually locate the problem and restore power.

FLISR is the solution.

With SurvalentONE FLISR, you can pinpoint fault locations, isolate them, and automatically reroute power to as many customers as possible in just seconds – potentially before they even notice. (Learn how Central Georgia EMC used SurvalentONE FLISR to cut its customer outage times in half.)

Our latest release builds on the existing benefits of SurvalentONE FLISR to deliver:

  • More control, efficiency, and flexibility for operators
  • Enhanced data and visibility to increase responsiveness and improve decision-making
  • Efficiently restore service to more customers
  • Increased field crew safety and productivity

Choose the optimal restoration option

When faults occur, there’s no time to waste. Operators need access to complete and accurate data to quickly detect faults and respond accordingly.

This was the driver behind the enhanced power flow study option in our load transfer analysis. Operators can simulate the effects of closing a tie once a viable backup feeder is identified and review the computed phase voltages, currents, and losses on the entire distribution network. Armed with this data, your operators can better detect system problems, including overloads and voltage violations, and more accurately assess line losses before taking action.

Minimize the number of affected customers with second pass analysis capabilities

No matter how prepared you are, outages happen and even the most understanding of customers want their power back on quickly.

With SurvalentONE FLISR’s new second pass analysis option, you can minimize the number of affected customers right away. Once the first pass is completed, you can immediately perform analysis to identify additional recoverable areas based on the reconfigurations made in the first pass. The result? Your field crews can focus their efforts where they’re really needed and you can help maintain the lowest possible reliability indices.

Increased field crew safety

Field crews work under some of the most perilous conditions; accordingly, we’re always looking for ways to enhance their safety during maintenance and restoration efforts. In this new release, we’ve added support for additional hot line tags (HLT): do nothing with them, treat them like a normal tag, disable FLISR on a feeder if an HLT is applied on it, or perform FLISR operations on segments of the feeder that do not have HLT applied. As a result, crews can manually disable FLISR to whatever extent they feel necessary to complete their work safely.

The PR 18.0 release kit is available for download on the Survalent Support Portal. For those looking to sharpen their skills, we have a FLISR training course scheduled on May 7-11, 2018.

If you have questions or want to leave feedback for the team, share your thoughts below. We’d love to hear from you.

Young & the Product Management team