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TRANSMISSION & DISTRIBUTION TECHNOLOGY


amount of renewables-based distributed energy resources. Tese are complex control systems for monitoring and controlling sources of energy. “DERMS requires accurate, real-time


measurement of voltages, loads, reactive power, fault data and even weather data,” says Wright. “A key consideration has been how to design and install these monitoring systems in a way that is cost-effective for utilities. Tis has called into question the traditional approach of grid monitoring with conventional magnetic current transformer (CT) and potential transformer (PT). Te installed cost of CTs and PTs is expensive and time-consuming, plus the feeder must be powered down for their installation.” An alternative lower-cost approach is


to employ low voltage (0-10V ac) sensor technology for all voltage and current measurements. Tese sensors are safe, accurate for all required measurements and can be installed without taking an outage.


Tree raw voltages and currents can


be wired to a Bitronics Distribution Grid Monitor (DGM), a pole-top measurement system, and dozens of useful measurements made including voltages to better that .5%, loads, power factor, real and reactive power. An ANSI 51 overcurrent element enables reporting of fault pickup and peak fault currents. All these measurements are reported to DMS and DERMS through DNP3 over radio. “Initial DGM deployment at a New


England utility drove further DGM enhancements,” says Wright. “Tis includes new measurements for ‘normalised voltage’ to accommodate sensor readings instead of PTs and CTs, additional surge suppression and ‘safety shields’ to prevent tampering of cable connectors. Tis major project was driven by a utility commission mandate to accurately measure and report end-of-line voltages.” Given that the trends indicate DER integration will increase significantly each


DGM on pole


year, so too will the need to maintain voltages, power factor and frequency within desired limits. New grid measurement and monitoring technologies are essential to keep these factors under control.


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