Alstom management system to power PPL Smart Grid project


Alstom’s Integrated Distribution Management System has been selected to power Smart Grid project in Pennsylvania.

Alstom has been selected to provide its Integrated Distribution Management System (IDMS) to PPL Electric Utilities, which provides electric delivery service to 1.4 million customers in the state of Pennsylvania (USA). The contract is an integral part of PPL Electric Utilities broader three-year, $38 million Smart Grid project to enhance system reliability in the Harrisburg area.

This Alstom designed technology, known as e-terradistribution 3.0, combines Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA)[1] software and advanced Distribution Management System (DMS)[2] in one integrated IDMS. The project follows PPL Electric Utilities installation of an Alstom Energy Management System and represents the latest in a string of deliveries to US utilities now operational using Alstom’s IDMS to monitor and control their distribution networks.

The seamless IDMS includes a single user interface utilising a single network model to provide PPL Electric Utilities distribution operators with real-time situational awareness for improved reliability. From one point in its control room, PPL Electric Utilities can access a suite of ‘smart’ applications to monitor and control electricity distribution and transmission networks, maximizing reliability across the entire network.

Storm restoration and resiliency is a key concern for distribution utilities. Alstom’s IDMS technology offers ‘self-healing’ attributes to locate faults, while the automated response capabilities help speed efforts to restore power and improve overall reliability.  Alstom’s single platform software architecture was developed specifically for 3-phase unbalanced distribution networks and is well-suited to handle large volumes of data. This will help PPL Electric Utilities make informed decisions concerning both day-to-day operations and outages from severe weather events.

“We are seeing a growing focus on Smart Grid technology, including distribution infrastructure, driven by the need to improve reliability, integrate clean renewable energy resources and respond faster to widespread outages. said Karim El Naggar, Vice President of Alstom Grid’s Network Management Solutions business. “PPL Electric Utilities is already making effective use of our standard deployment methodology including the capabilities, tools and processes to support a streamlined, on-time delivery.”

“The implementation of Alstom’s IDMS is consistent with our broader efforts to improve the overall reliability of our electricity network with advanced smart grid technologies,” said David Bonenberger, Vice President, Distribution Operations for PPL. “Our new IDMS will give our system planners more detailed information about electric usage and load on various utility equipment so that they can better plan reliability improvements and prioritize future investments in the power grid that benefit our customers.

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