Home Tags POWERGRID_INTERNATIONAL Volume 5 Issue 3
POWERGRID_INTERNATIONAL Volume 5 Issue 3
The electric utility industry stands at the confluence of two drivers of change. Deregulation and the Internet will forever alter the way utilities deal with their customers.
In the past few months, electric utilities' reliability and power quality have come under scrutiny. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) set up a task force, the Power Outage Study Team, to investigate last summer's power outages and disturbances, and Bill Richardson, Secretary of DOE, has gone as far as encouraging lawmakers to enact strict reliability legislation.
DistribuTECH celebrated its 10th year as the electric utility industry's leading information technology and transmission and distribution automation conference in grand style last month in Miami Beach.
Integration of disparate systems has become a major priority for utilities. Mergers and acquisitions, e-commerce, globalization, competition and re-regulation have created a need for utilities to make real-time operational and engineering data accessible throughout the company.
The Utility Communications Architecture 2.0 (UCA 2.0trademark) offers simple and powerful substation intelligent electronic device (IED) integration through logic and communication capabilities. The first article in this series discussed the logic, speed and auto-negotiating communications capabilities of microprocessor-based IEDs.
Oakdale Electric Cooperative serves more than 11,000 electric consumers in central Wisconsin. Among those 11,000, the agricultural customers who utilize irrigation systems are at times the most demanding.
NetMedia Inc.'s BasicX BX-24 microcontroller is a complete system designed for control applications, data acquisition and rapid development in a small 24-pin module. The BX-24 features an on-chip multitasking operating system, IEEE floating point and 19 bits of programmable I/O (eight of which can be 10-bit analog to digital converters). Programs are compiled on a Windows PC then downloaded in-circuit via a serial port, allowing for field upgrades.
MicroVault Corp. recently introduced an electronic bill payment and presentment (EBPP) solution that offers a bit of a twist. While most EBPP solutions employ a Web site as the customer access point for bill presentment and payment, MicroVault's NetCourier uses e-mail.
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