US energy distribution firm Dominion Energy has been recognised by the Southeastern Electric Exchange for employing innovation to optimise voltage control and reliability on its grid network.
The utility deployed a network of static synchronous compensators (STATCOMs) at four substations in the Hampton Roads area.
The aim was to improve voltage control and redundancy whilst supporting an increase in integration of solar energy in Virginia following the closure of the Chesapeake Energy Center and the influx of new renewable generation.
The utility is the first to deploy many STATCOMs in one area. The deployment allows Dominion Energy to use any one of the devices as a spare or to mitigate voltage issues when another is out of service.
Scott Miller, vice president for electric transmission at Dominion Energy, said: "Maintaining a strong, reliable grid is the driving force behind what we do every day.
"We knew it was critical to find a cost-effective solution that provides fast-response dynamic voltage support.
"I am so proud of the ingenuity of my colleagues. In the end, our customers will benefit and critical infrastructure in Hampton Roads will experience better reliability."
The utility received the Chairman's Award, which is given to SEE member companies to recognise best-in-class projects in the substation category.
SEE is a nonprofit trade association of investor-owned electric companies founded in 1933 to promote the common interests of its member companies; enhance the human, operational and technical resources of its member companies; and provide the coordination of storm restoration services to impacted member companies.