Friday, July 17, 2015

Learn How Three Big U.S. Utilities Gained Experience With IEC 61850

The three well known U.S. utilities New York Power Authority (NYPA), Kansas City Power and Light (KCP&L), and Southern California Edison (SCE) have recently gained experience with IEC 61850 applications through various projects. Don Von Dollen (EPRI) and Erich Gunther (EnerNex) have given various answers on a very crucial question: “Why is IEC 61850 used all over the world – but not that much in the U.S.?”

The main outcome of their investigation is:

  • Need extensive training to the workforce.
  • Take advantage of help from other utilities and entities (consultants, …).
  • Cross-vendor configuration is burdensome.
  • Case studies and implementation profiles needed.
  • Participate more in the UCAIug 61850 User Group
  • Build a strong test-lab.

I fully agree with Erich!

The main reason for the slow progress in the U.S. is (from my point of view) related to the misinterpretation what IEC 61850 really is. Most people still believe that it is something like DNP4.0 – DNP3.0 plus … Which is totally wrong!

My experience – after some 4.000 – experts educated in IEC 61850 is this: Teamwork (of smart engineers) makes the Dream work!

Erich Gunther has presented a one hour webinar on the subject on July 14, 2015.

Click HERE to listen to Erich’s one hour presentation.
Click HERE for a copy of his slides [pdf].
Click HERE for a paper written by Erich on the subject [pdf]

The need of smart and well educated engineers is required independent of the approach:

  1. Build turn-key substations (most big vendors support this) or
  2. Utility-driven design, configuration, commissioning and test … and operation.

After last weeks 4 day training for a big South-American utility that applies the second approach, I see an increasing need for more vendor-independent training for protection and SCADA applications in substations.

We are here to help you in this regard:

NEW Training Opportunities for IEC 61850, IEC 61400-25, IEC 60870-5-104, and IEC 62351

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