Birmingham, AL — The Association of Edison Illuminating Companies has announced five recipients of the prestigious AEIC Achievement Award for 2019. The AEIC Achievement Awards are presented annually to individuals or groups of individuals from AEIC member companies or committees who have clearly provided significant contributions to advancing the operations of the electric energy industry.
American Electric Power Co., Florida Power & Light Co., Hawaiian Electric Co., PPL Electric Utilities, and the AEIC Power Delivery Storm Team received the awards during AEIC’s Annual Meeting, held in Naples, Florida, October 9 through 11, 2019.
AEIC President Manny Miranda, SVP, Power Delivery of Florida Power & Light Co., and Terry Waters, Executive Director of AEIC, presented the awards to the four companies and the AEIC Storm Team. This year AEIC received 60 award nominations, up from 39 in 2018.
American Electric Power Company won the award for its Byllesby Battery project, a first of a kind project where a hydroelectric generating facility is paired with a battery storage system to provide grid support, in this case, frequency regulation. The PJM frequency regulation market includes two types of frequency regulation signals: RegA (slow regulation), and RegD (fast regulation). Combining a conventional generator with a battery and innovative dispatch logic to provide frequency regulation enables the station to provide RegA or RegD service, creating an additional revenue stream for AEP and enhancing an existing asset that has been in service over 100 years.
Florida Power and Light Company (FP&L) received the award for its leading-edge Intelligent Feeder Assessment Process, which allows the utility to predict outages and perform predictive maintenance before outages occur on overhead distribution systems.
The process employs Artificial Intelligence (AI) to produce NextAlerts by processing over 14 million data points from smart meters, sensors, switches, and relays each day to identify at-risk circuits. NextGrid, a geospatial application developed by FP&L that combines the power of 15 different applications into one, enables FP&L to reduce the inspection area on a feeder tagged by NextAlerts.
FP&L employs drone technology to inspect their distribution system visually and with infrared technology on a single pass. Automated image recognition is employed to continuously review drone imagery to detect compromised components and evaluate equipment against FP&L standards. Equipment issues are found within the prescribed drone patrol area 91% of the time.
Currently, FP&L Power Delivery is able to identify and assess seven types of overhead equipment with 82% precision, and will add 16 additional types of equipment within two years.
Hawaiian Electric Company has partnered with the United States Army to construct its Schofield Generating Station on the island of Oahu. This firm power plant is located on a secure site, inland and at elevation, making it immune to storm surge and tsunami, and is fuel-flexible, capable of biodiesel fueling, contributing to the state’s renewable energy production. The plant, which has black start capability, enhances the island’s grid resiliency and reliability and enables the utility to integrate more utility-to-residential scale renewable energy.
In addition, the plant can be islanded, providing energy security to meet the base’s mission-critical needs by creating a microgrid. This unique public-private venture, which was constructed under budget and on schedule, required the utility and the Army to overcome significant environmental, permitting, security, regulatory, and other issues.
PPL Electric Utilities (PPL EU) received an award for developing an innovative Downed Conductor Safety process, to detect high impedance faults caused by downed power lines based on analysis of harmonic currents, and to automatically trip relays to disconnect power from that line. By year end, PPL EU plans to have the new technology, which PPL EU believes to be the first of its kind, installed at around 1500 locations throughout its service territory.
The AEIC Power Delivery Storm Team Following Super Storm Sandy the AEIC Power Delivery Committee established its Storm Team with a mission to document and share best practices and facilitate the mutual aid process when responding to emergency situations. Fifteen Best Practices have been developed and have become industry standards, including practices related to post event switching, decentralized operations, staging and logistics, materials acquisition and delivery, and on/off system support resource readiness. With the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the National Response Executive Committee was established, and through EEI, member teams are sought out nationally and internationally to benchmark best practices.
AEIC was founded by Thomas Edison and his associates in 1885 and is one of the most experienced associations in the electric energy industry. AEIC encourages research and enables the exchange of technical information and best practices through a committee structure, staffed with experts from management of member companies, to solve challenges and create opportunities for electric utilities worldwide.