Monday, August 08, 2011

GIS Software to Monitor Utilities

Space-Time Insight, a provider of next-generation situational intelligence solutions, today announced the availability of new capabilities in its software to further simplify the ability of a utility or independent system operator (ISO) to assess the performance of the electric grid, and visualize, analyze and correlate large volumes of data received from multiple sources, a critical requirement in the deployment of Wide Area Situational Awareness (WASA) systems. Designed to accommodate the microsecond measurements recorded by synchrophasors, devices used to measure the state and quality of the power system, the new software arms control room operators with timely information needed to make instant decisions that impact grid stability and availability.

Synchrophasors are devices that measure voltages and currents at different locations on a power grid. By measuring and comparing the flow of electricity at multiple points on the grid at the same time, it is possible to assess the condition of the system. However, as grid operators across the globe incorporate synchrophasors into their networks to improve grid reliability, they are being challenged to consume and interpret the huge volumes of data being generated -- synchrophasors “read” the grid 30 times per second. Those readings provide visibility into potential problems which may take hours to unfold, but rapid insight into the data is critical to avert blackouts and other disaster scenarios.

Space-Time Insight’s visual analytics and geospatial software, which is in use at utilities and ISO’s around the globe, provides the needed insight by applying the principles of situational intelligence. It helps operators visualize the grid in multiple dimensions on a map, alerts them to potential problems, helps determine the root cause of those problems, and facilitates the remedial actions that are required and procedures that must be followed to address the problems.

Space-Time Insight now delivers on the real-time performance demands of WASA systems by enabling operators to:

* perform real-time comparison calculations across any synchrophasor combination on a grid, using massive multi-threading capabilities that calculate phase angle separation signals at signal acquisition speed (i.e. multiple times per second)

* proactively and promptly address outages and looming crises courtesy of dynamic displays that deliver operational alerts through multiple channels including SMS, email, and visual and audible alarms, and threshold violation benchmarks

* gain a 360-degree view of the grid ecosystem in real time through overlays of weather and environmental event feeds and any number of additional data sources, including seamless plug-and-play integration of Voltage Stability Analysis (VSA) and Oscillation Management System (OMS)

* set up monitoring policies and define new business rules and equations with the ease of natural language, reducing their dependence on IT and improving their productivity and effectiveness

"The deployment of synchrophasors is a critical step towards ensuring large-scale rolling blackouts do not occur,” said Krishna Kumar, CTO and Founder of Space-Time Insight. "Just as critical is the ability to understand and quickly act on the data those synchrophasors report. Space-Time Insight uniquely correlates and transforms the data into intuitive visual displays that operators can use to make informed decisions."


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