Synchrophasors under test at Dominion Virginia Power


Richmond, VA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — November 11, 2009 – Dominion Virginia Power is working with Virginia Tech to develop and test synchrophasors, which provide dynamic real time information about conditions on the transmission grid.

The project, funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Department of Energy, also involves Quanta Technology of Raleigh, NC.

“A smarter, more efficient and reliable electric grid means better service for customers, benefits for the environment and lower costs in the long run,” said Dominion Virginia Power CEO Paul Koonce. “What is particularly appealing about this technology is that it can be applied to our existing transmission network, not just new projects.”

The new technology provides grid operators with the ability to better foresee, prevent and manage potential overloads on the grid, and route power more efficiently. This enables maximum efficiency and reliability for Dominion’s transmission grid.

“If you characterize the current state of technology for monitoring the power system as an X-ray image, synchrophasor technology will provide MRI quality data,” said Dr Arun Phadke, Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg campus. “Dominion’s system is a unique and good proving ground for application of these techniques.”

Phadke’s work with synchrophasor technology began nearly 27 years ago. He invented the key building block of this technology – the phasor measurement unit – and credits the 2003 blackout of the northeast United States for initiating the emergence of this technology.
As part of a larger project submitted by PJM and 12 member transmission owners, Dominion will also receive federal stimulus funds to help put these efforts to practical use and install the new systems as this tailored research and development is completed in the laboratories.