NV Energy announced a new reliability improvement program that utilizes sophisticated sensing technology comprising smart grid sensors and software to monitor remote substations and distribution power lines throughout Nevada. The aim of the project is to provide greater reliability of the electric supply for NV Energy's customers as well as millions of tourists.
The new grid-monitoring technology from St. Louis-based Aclara Technologies is used to monitor remote substations and thousands of miles of medium-voltage distribution lines. This equipment transmits near real-time data to NV Energy, improving operational awareness of the electric grid, enhancing the utility's ability to quickly identify and dispatch crews to address electricity circuit problems such as short circuits, circuit overloads and voltage drops.
NV Energy Senior Vice President of Customer Operations Pat Egan noted that NV Energy's reliability performance is in the top 10 percent nationally, but that the company is continually exploring economic methods to improve electric system reliability.
"This technology enables us to modernize and monitor our network in a very cost-effective way and helps us develop new approaches to prevent power outages and improve restoration time when electric system anomalies occur. We are pleased that this technology also easily integrates with existing monitoring systems at NV Energy, which allows our teams to share data and work collaboratively," he added.
NV Energy crews are installing these new sensors throughout Nevada and anticipate completing this phase of the reliability improvement project by the end of 2016. Crews can safely install the sensors without causing an interruption to customer service through the use of insulated equipment, personal protective equipment and safe-operating procedures.