Thousands to Attend DistribuTECH 2006 in Tampa

Conference organizers anticipate more than 4,000 industry professionals will attend DistribuTECH 2006 when it comes to Tampa, Fla., Feb. 7-9, 2006. Those gathered at the Tampa Convention Center will have access to more than 60 informative conference sessions in 13 tracks and more than 220 companies exhibiting the latest in utility technology.

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With the recent passage of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and the destruction witnessed during this most recent hurricane season, there will be plenty of problems to solve and important industry topics to discuss at this 16th meeting of one of the utility industry’s most popular conferences.

Utility University Offers Professional Development Hours

Before the main conference and exhibition starts on Feb. 7, attendees can take advantage of pre-conference Utility University courses on Feb. 5 and 6. Course instructors are recognized experts in their respective fields and the courses are taught in an interactive classroom environment.

The 2006 Utility University curriculum includes such courses as:

“- Communications for utility automation,

“- Substation automation and beyond: Managing IED data in the enterprise to realize real business process benefits,

“- Introduction to SCADA system technology,

“- AMR technologies to address demand response,

“- Cybersecurity of control systems,

“- How to select and acquire the right AMI system for energy utilities, and

“- Distribution automation: Recent project experiences, available vendor technology and realizable benefits.

For a complete listing of the 25 Utility University courses being offered at DistribuTECH 2006, visit the conference website at

With its Utility University courses, DistribuTECH is once again authorized as a continuing education provider by the Florida Board of Professional Engineers. Many states recognize courses the Florida Board authorizes, so Utility University attendees are encouraged to check with their states’ governing board to see if the courses they take are eligible for professional development hours. Attendance at a full-day course awards eight professional development hours and a half-day course awards four. Certificates of attendance are provided to all attendees at the conclusion of the day. Attendees wishing to obtain professional development hours must achieve a passing grade on an examination at the course’s conclusion.

Keynote Kicks off Main Conference

Conference organizers have gathered four compelling keynote speakers to kick off the main DistribuTECH Conference on the morning of Feb. 7.

Charles R. Black, president of Tampa Electric Co., will provide a welcome to Tampa and give his unique perspective on the power industry. Black joined Tampa Electric in 1973 and has held various engineering and management positions since then. During his years at Tampa Electric and TECO Power Services, he has been involved in engineering and construction, project management and energy supply. Black became president of Tampa Electric in October 2004.

DistribuTECH’s second keynote speaker, Terry Winter, will draw on his experience as executive vice president and chief operating officer of American Superconductor and his history in transmission and distribution technology as he addresses those gathered. Winter joined American Superconductor in 2004 to help accelerate the adoption of advanced reactive power compensation solutions in transmission grids. Prior to joining American Superconductor, Winter served as president and CEO of the California Independent System Operator (ISO) where he oversaw integration of the transmission systems of Southern California Edison, Pacific Gas & Electric, and San Diego Gas & Electric when the California ISO assumed control of the state’s open market transmission grid in 1998.

Winter is also a member of the board of Trans-Elect, an independent transmission company, and the Consortium for Electric Reliability Technology Solutions (CERTS). He was a member of the North American Electric Reliability Council analysis team that reviewed the Aug. 16, 2003, blackout and provided recommendations for transmission grid and operating procedure improvements.

Sports fans will recognize DistribuTECH’s third keynote speaker: Terry Bowden, a college football studio analyst for ABC Sports. Although Bowden’s present and future are firmly planted in network television, it all began walking the sidelines as a head football coach. As a college football coach, Bowden compiled a 15-year record of 111-53-2 and a 68 percent winning percentage. As head coach at Auburn, he won 73 percent of his games and posted the best opening five-year run of any head football coach in school history. Bowden’s motivational message encourages each and every individual to realize that it’s his or her effort, ability and job that make an organization successful.

FERC commissioner Nora Mead Brownell rounds out the slate of keynote speakers. Although she was a late addition to the program, Brownell will have a timely message, given the recent passage of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Brownell has been a FERC commissioner since 2001 and has been a leading advocate of responsive and effective independent board governance at RTOs, and a strong proponent of FERC policies that promote investment in national energy infrastructure development.

Utility Automation & Engineering T&D will also present its annual Projects of the Year Awards during the keynote session. The awards program recognizes the outstanding efforts of utilities in four categories: Automatic Meter Reading Project of the Year, Geospatial Technologies Project of the Year, T&D Automation Project of the Year and T&D Engineering Project of the Year.

Conference Sessions Cover the Gamut of Utility Technology

The exhibit hall, featuring an anticipated 220-plus exhibitors, opens after the Keynote Session on Feb. 7. Later that afternoon, the real “meat” of the conference begins with concurrent sessions in the following tracks:

“- Distribution automation,

“- Substation integration and automation,

“- Security,

“- Distribution operations management,

“- Mobile and field automation strategies,

“- Enterprise integration benefits and techniques,

“- Transmission system technology,

“- T&D engineering and equipment,

“- T&D business issues,

“- Demand response,

“- Metering, AMR and data management-power,

“- Metering, AMR and data management-water, and

“- Automation strategies for the water industry.

Much more information about the DistribuTECH 2006 Conference and Exhibition, including details on individual conference sessions, is available online at ࢝®à¢®

Editor’s note: DistribuTECH is owned and produced by PennWell Corporation, which publishes Utility Automation & Engineering T&D..


  • The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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