OATI bets to improve Western Interconnection’s load management


Smart grid technology provider Open Access Technology International (OATI) last week announced it successfully deployed its new energy management solution for improved Western Interconnection’s grid management.

In a press statement, OATI claims the deployed energy management platform ‘webintegrity’ will provide reliability coordinators, balancing authorities and transmission operators in the Western Interconnection, with advanced flow visualisation into the electric grid.

Data acquisition and load management

The development will result in increased reliability and situational awareness throughout the entire Western Interconnection through the provision of advanced near real time grid information and calculations to determine and quantify the cause of contingency congestion.

The system replaced OATI’s webSas solution.

Furthermore, OATI said users can utilise the technology to initiate congestion management actions including system re-dispatch and curtailments to get rid of pre and post contingency flows in the interfaces of the interconnection.

Sasan Mokhtari, CEO of OATI said: “We are eager to release yet another powerful solution that addresses the challenges of the industry while contributing lasting solutions and benefits.”

The Western Interconnection is an AC power grid connecting utilities in North America.

The system stretches from western Canada south to Baja California in Mexico, through to the Rockies and Great Plains mountains in the US/Canada.

Energy management in the US

The deployment follows late January’s announcement by energy management firm Schneider Electric that it strengthened collaboration with US electric and gas utility CPS Energy to improve the utility’s grid reliability.

In a press statement, Schneider said the collaboration will allow development of “a distribution automation strategy that will improve system reliability, allowing CPS Energy to deliver consistent power quality and support greater energy efficiency.”
“Today’s utilities face enormous pressure to comply with government regulations…”

Paul Barham, SVP energy delivery services at CPS Energy said:” By leveraging Schneider Electric’s extensive utility and power engineering expertise, we are able to better analyse and understand the current position of our resources and make the most informed decisions.”

Barham added: “Not only does this help us improve our operations, planning and strategy, it enables us to focus on our core business: keeping the lights on for our customers.”

The development came at a time when CPS faced challenges on how to improve its energy management by integrating grid automation solutions in its network characterised by an increase in the number of consumers, varying distribution voltages and equipment.

David L. Wood, director of utility consulting services, Schneider Electric said: “Today’s utilities face enormous pressure to comply with government regulations and supply safe, reliable, high-quality electricity at a reasonable cost to their customers – all while addressing challenges like aging grid infrastructure and a decline in experienced workers.”

Schneider Electric claimed its utility consulting services providing counsel around grid modernisation, DER integration, microgrid planning, grid resiliency and distribution reliability will minimise CPS’s capital expenditures, reduce operating costs, meet regulatory requirements and enhance worker safety.