The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) conducted test flights in Alabama of prototype unmanned aerial systems (UAS) and payloads of video and other sensing equipment to demonstrate that such “drone” technology could be deployed to assess damage to electric transmission and distribution systems following storms. EPRI tested an Aeryon Scout and the Adaptive Flight Hornet Maxi, two rotary winged devices at altitudes under 100 feet, carrying payloads that weighed less than 55 pounds.
Landsnet, the Icelandic transmission system operator, awarded $10 million order to ABB to supply a high-voltage submarine and underground power-cable system that will transport electricity from the mainland to the volcanic island of Heimaey. The new 72-kV line will replace an existing cable that is approaching the end of its operating life. The 17.5-km line will include a 13-km submarine section, a 4.5-km underground section, and an integrated fiber-optic cable for telecommunications and temperature monitoring.
Cupertino Electric is installing a new 230-kV transmission line to interconnect a new substation serving a 200-MW photovoltaic power plant in Imperial Valley, Calif. When complete in late 2013, the overhead line will span five miles and interconnect a new 230-kV substation on the 2,000-acre solar project site in California’s Imperial Valley.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced the first step in the development of a cybersecurity framework for critical infrastructure protection, a set of voluntary standards and best practices to guide industry in reducing cyber risks. Pres.
MISO’s board of directors approved the applications of four new transmission-owning members: Cleco Power, Lafayette City-Parish Consolidated Government, Minnesota Municipal Power Agency, and Prairie Power. As a fully integrated transmission-owning member of MISO, each will participate in MISO’s competitive energy markets and system planning and operating functions.
PacifiCorp and the California Independent System Operator Corporation (CAISO) entered a memorandum of understanding that commits the two largest grid operators in the western United States to work toward creating a real-time energy imbalance market (EIM) by October 2014. If implemented, PacifiCorp – which controls two balancing authorities primarily covering portions of six states, including part of Northern California – would participate in a co-optimized real-time energy market facilitated by the ISO. The joint agreement applies only to the EIM service.
ABB won an order worth around $260 million from the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to upgrade the existing Celilo HVDC (high-voltage direct current) converter station in Oregon. This station is part of the electricity link between the Pacific Northwest and Southern California commissioned in 1970. The Celilo converter station is located at the north end of the Pacific DC Intertie, also known as Path 65, which has a capacity of 3,100 MW, and originates near the Columbia River. The order was booked in the fourth quarter of 2012.
Pattern Energy’s Ocotillo wind project in Southern California began commercial operation, transmitting energy to the Sunrise Powerlink, a newly constructed 117-mile 500-kv transmission line connecting San Diego and the Imperial Valley. The 265-MW Ocotillo project in Imperial Valley has 94 turbines now operational. An additional 18 turbines are expected to be installed in the spring of 2013. San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) will buy the output under a 20-year agreement.