EDSA snags 2nd intelligent alarm filtering technology Patent for complex electrical power systems

Source: EDSA Power Analytics

EDSA a leading developer of power analytics solutions for the design, testing, and management of complex electrical power systems, today announced that is has been awarded its second patent (patent number 7,693,608) in the last month from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. This most recent patent is for the innovative intelligent alarm filtering technology within EDSA’s Paladin® Live™ facility and energy management software. 

EDSA’s new patent – entitled “Systems and methods for alarm filtering and management within a real-time data acquisition and monitoring environment” – is another in a series of patents and patent applications for EDSA, as the Company further increases its technological leadership in the emerging field of Power Analytics™. The Company now has nearly 100 patent awards or applications pending worldwide for its Paladin power systems modeling and predictive diagnostics technology. 

EDSA’s Paladin® family of products helps organizations to ensure that their electrical power infrastructure is optimally designed (Paladin® DesignBase™), performs precisely as intended in terms of reliability and energy efficiency (Paladin® Live™), and operates flawlessly as organizations make real-time transitions between public and on-premise power sources (Paladin® SmartGrid™.) By continually comparing operating conditions with the original, as-designed Computer Aided Design (CAD) model, the Paladin platform is the only real-time power analytics solution for diagnosing electrical power problems or energy inefficiencies at their earliest stages. 

This is the basis for patent 7,693,608, which addresses a major contributor to the problems of false alarms – and often cascading alarms – that frequently occur in complex electrical power infrastructure. Many false alarms occur when engineers choose alarm settings based on absolute thresholds set at how the system has been operating. The problem with these threshold settings is that they are based only on how the system has been operating not necessarily what it should be. Therefore, when a “normal” change occurs – such as loads increasing, switching from utility or backup generation or other normal operations – alarms occur. The ability to have “conditional” or “context aware” thresholds makes all the difference. In addition, the EDSA Paladin system manages power and energy as a network, rather than as a series of discrete devices so “thresholds” embodied in this patent are not only intelligent, but network-wide in their scope. When there are frequent “nuisance alarms,” operators will ignore them - much like how car alarms are ignored. 

Compounding the problem is the fact that operating conditions in facilities can vary dramatically, depending on how much electrical power is being used during peak or non-peak periods, and the extent to which power levels fluctuate as power-consuming equipment is turned on-and-off. Just as a person’s “normal” blood pressure varies depending on whether he is walking, exercising, or sitting at his computer, the “normal” state of a power system varies with operating conditions. 

Using patented intelligent alarm filtering technology, Paladin Live addresses the problem of false alarms by: 

• Relying on the design specifications for every component throughout the power infrastructure, as they are automatically encoded in the original CAD model

• Recognizing the dynamic power interactions between individual components, as well as the “ripple effect” of off-spec conditions, since they may later impact the entire infrastructure-wide power system as a whole

• Understanding the operating environment dynamically, not just statically, in order to address many critical false alarms that may be rooted in power system changes that are perfectly normal, but sufficient to trigger an alarm in a less-intelligent monitoring system 

• Using all of that data to determine – with astonishing accuracy – the extent to which power behavior varies from what was predicted, which EDSA calls “predicted power variance” (PPV) or “difference channels.” A situation that falls within the range of acceptable power system behaviors triggers no alarms, but conditions that suggest impending problems will result in a very specific alarm that focuses only on the root problem and not a vague, general alarm.

“Paladin Live’s ability to distinguish between real and falsely reported problems can save facility operators millions of dollars in operating and capital costs by ensuring that operations perform precisely as they were intended to, without the disruption of unnecessary maintenance or energy use,” said Kevin Meagher, Chief Technology Officer for EDSA. “Our customers – whether mission-critical data centers or FAA flight operations – have found that Paladin Live provides the technological foundation necessary to ensure that they are able to focus on their organization objective, and not be distracted by phantom power problems.”

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