Making Waves at EPRI
Congratulations on a really excellent and thoughtful issue (Sept./Oct. `96). The whole issue, and particularly your editorial, focused needed attention on updating the communications technologies that utilities use to meet demands in the face of time, personnel and budget limitations. One very exciting technology that was not addressed in your case studies is Electric Power Research Institute`s (EPRI) UCA (Utility Communications Architecture). One example of UCA at work is ICCP (Inter Control Center Communications Protocol), which is being specified in most new inter- and intra-utility links between SCADA, EMS and DMS systems. EPRI and NRECA are now sponsoring some great demonstration projects that bring UCA directly into intelligent electronic devices and RTUs in the substation and distribution automation environments. UCA lets utilities base their communications strategy on open standards supported by EPRI.
As you so eloquently put it, “keeping up with the latest technologies in utility automation” is crucial for surviving “the surging waves of change” facing utilities.