Independent system operators and regional transmission organizations recognize the value in having a common IT architecture.
Gordon van Welie is chairman of the ISO/RTO Council, and president and CEO of ISO New England Inc.
In today’s modern business environment, standards for products and services have become common—and expected—practice. Standards create consistency among the products and services offered by different companies, which ultimately helps businesses, consumers, and the economy.
The AC plug is a good example. Although slight variations of this ever-present device exist—grounded/ungrounded, polarized/non-polarized— virtually all AC electrical products used in North America employ the common two- or three-pronged interface between a device and its electricity supply.
This simple standard provides assurance of safe and reliable operation just about anywhere on the continent. Equally important, the AC-plug standard enables manufacturers to devise, build, and market consumer electrical products without the added time and expense a non-standard plug design would require.
Much like the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), whose work led to the standard AC-plug configuration, the ISO/RTO Council, or IRC—consisting of the 10 independent system operators (ISOs) and regional transmission organizations (RTOs) from across North America—recognizes the value in having a common information-technology (IT) architecture for the systems used to operate inter-regional power systems and wholesale electricity markets.