Substation automation is a rapidly increasing area of interest and benefit to utilities. Substation automation goes beyond traditional SCADA to provide added capability and information that can further improve operations and maintenance, increase system and staff efficiencies, and leverage and defer major capital investments.
Applications and data of interest may include remote access to intelligent electronic devices (IED)/relay configuration ports, waveforms, event data, diagnostic information, video for security or equipment status assessment, metering, switching, volt/VAR management, and others.
Newer microprocessor-based relays and other intelligent devices provide unprecedented flexibility and rich functionality which, in turn, provide low cost monitoring analysis and diagnosis of electrical faults in the power network. Many newer IEDs provide optional network interfaces such as distributed network protocol (DNP) 3.0 over transmission control protocol (TCP)/internet protocol (IP)/Ethernet. Additionally, more utilities are gaining access to fiber optic based communications at some substation locations. Even more utilities are implementing IP wireless communication solutions to substations. IP networks to substations can greatly enhance substation automation possibilities and benefits such as primary equipment condition data, fault statistics, and data useful for preventive equipment maintenance.
Sterling Technologies is actively planning, designing, and implementing substation automation solutions. We have an experienced team that knows the vendors, products, design options, communication solutions, and implementation hurdles. We help our clients find the best approach, while managing costs and risks.
Services Sterling Technologies can provide include the following:
- Designing your substation automation architecture including remote access, SCADA monitoring and control, event recording
- Selecting the best RTU or data concentrator for your substation
- Developing a business case for substation automation
- Evaluating existing systems and developing strategies to migrate to new applications and technologies
- Designing an overall solution to integrate substation equipment with communication systems and head-end applications
- Specifying detailed designs and helping select all equipment from intelligent devices, substation servers, remote terminal units (RTUs), network switches, firewalls, wide area networks, head-end applications, and others
- Estimating impacts on utility staff resources during implementation and post-implementation
- Assisting with configuration, integration, and testing of the solution
- Presenting a workshop to educate your team on a technology or address a more strategic objective involving substation automation