Each utility is at a different stage of their Utiliverse™ journey to improve reliability, resiliency, decarbonization, and flexibility
BRAMPTON, ONTARIO – February 6, 2023. Survalent, a leading provider of advanced distribution management system (ADMS) software, has defined the ecosystem that all utilities work within and will need to implement over time to deliver power in the face of massive disruption, new technologies, and yet-to-be-identified challenges: the “Utiliverse™.” Each utility’s Utiliverse™ will be unique to their business and operational objectives, infrastructure, and challenges, and will continually change and evolve, with a timeline individual to each utility.
Understanding the Utiliverse™ is important as the electric distribution industry is undergoing enormous disruption. Utilities are increasingly mandated with improving what Survalent sees as the four current pillars of the Utiliverse™ : reliability, resilience, decarbonization, and demand-side flexibility. Addressing these challenges will enable utilities to operate a power grid that is highly responsive to changes in supply and demand, can quickly and accurately identify and respond to outages and restore power, and integrate the infrastructure and processes needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Utilities may prioritize one or more of these pillars at various points in their journey:
- Utilities will focus on reliability if they are challenged with frequent power outages and voltage or frequency fluctuations and need to improve their overall network uptime.
- Increasing resiliency will be a priority for utilities who experience frequent power disruptions, whether they be caused by natural disasters, vegetation, device malfunctions, cyberattacks, etc. These utilities will be seeking to maintain service in the face of such events and restore power more quickly when outages occur.
- Utilities mandated with reducing the carbon footprint of their network will focus on decarbonization technologies and processes that can be leveraged at both the utility and meter levels, as well as integrating renewable energy sources into their grid.
- Utilities focusing on demand side flexibility will be looking to balance the supply and demand of electricity within their network, which could include offering customer programs and leveraging renewable energy sources within the grid.
“The Utiliverse™ envisions a future of improved predictability, responsiveness, security, and sustainability for the power grid,” explains Survalent Chief Technology Officer, Young Ngo. “Utilities today are dealing with tremendous challenges and disruption, including electrification, frequent and severe weather events, decentralization of power, digital transformation and more – at the same time as a large percentage of the workforce is retiring, taking decades of knowledge with them. We have always invested and continue to invest in the technology, people, processes, and partnerships that will help utilities successfully meet their goals, at every stage of their Utiliverse™ journey.”
Vietnam Electricity Corporation’s Ho Chi Min City (HCM) branch is an example of a utility on a journey to improve reliability and resiliency. In 2015, the utility set ambitious goals of lowering its SAIDI from 720 to 44 minutes, and its SAIFI from 6.72 to 0.59 by the end of 2020. In doing so, they aimed to deliver high quality, reliable power to support the city’s citizens and to attract and retain commercial and industrial enterprises to the city. After implementing FLISR in two of HCM’s four districts, one of which is a key business district, the utility exceeded its goals by bringing its SAIDI to 41 minutes and SAIFI to 0.54 times.
In addition to helping utilities meet their current goals, as in the example above, Survalent is also working with an extensive suite of technology, service, and implementation partners, as well as DOE National Labs, to help utilities meet their future goals. Survalent’s partnership with customers and Esri to support the successful migration to Esri’s utility network model for improved situational awareness and reliability is just one example.
If you’re interested in seeing how your utility’s needs fit into the Utiliverse™, come visit us at booth 3827 during DISTRIBUTECH International, or book a meeting with us at the conference by clicking here.