Dan Sullivan has always been at the forefront of the power industry. From his nomination as IEEE Student of the Year at the Pennsylvania State University to his current career track at Mitsubishi Electric Power Products (MEPPI), Sullivan has risen to principal project engineer providing, leadership, technical consultation and project engineering management support for Static Var Compensator (SVC) projects.
Sullivan has always supported the fact that Flexible AC Transmission System (FACTS) equipment such as SVCs can provide electric utilities a proven source for fast reactive power compensation that provides the dynamic voltage support and stability for stressed and aging transmission grids.
During much of his tenure at MEPPI, he has lead and conducted a wide array of power system analysis and engineering design studies associated with transmission systems and equipment applications. He has been a leader for system analysis, engineering, design, modeling, and technical specification of static var compensators, including application studies, software model development/testing, evaluation of reactive power coordinated control strategies, and SVC control strategy development. He is a senior member of IEEE and contributes to various task forces and working groups within the IEEE/PES, including his current appointment as secretary of Substation Committee Working Group (WG) I4 on static var compensators. He is also an active member of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC) SVC Modeling Task Force. He has taught various modules on Industrial Substation Operations, Surge Protection, including modules of an IEEE Tutorial on Static Var Compensators.
At the IEEE PES Transmission & Distribution Conference being held from April 21 to April 24 in Chicago, Illinois, Sullivan will be presenting and lecturing at two sessions. On Wednesday, April 23, he and Anthony Johnson of Southern California Edison will be giving a presentation on a technical paper titled “Dynamic Voltage Support with the Rector SVC in California’s San Joaquin Valley”at the FACTS/Power Electronics to Improve Power System Dynamic Performance panel session. The presentation covers the voltage support requirements in the Big Creek Corridor transmission system, the SVC design, studies and control objectives, and operating performance.
“The Rector SVC is connected to the 230 kV bus at SCE’s Rector substation for dynamic Var support to meet the transient voltage dip reliability requirements of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC), and to enhance local and remote steady-state voltage control,” the abstract reads. “The SVC configuration includes six thyristor valve controlled/switched branches, six harmonic filter branches, and employs coordinated control of a local 230 kV mechanically switched capacitor (MSC) bank to ensure sufficient dynamic Vars remain available for system disturbances.”
Also at the IEEE Conference, Sullivan will be a co-lecturer at a tutorial on static var compensators sponsored by the I4 WG of the IEEE/PES Substation Committee on Monday, April 21. This tutorial focuses on SVC equipment design and operations. A brief review of system aspects that justifies the need for fast reactive power compensation and a description of various applications will be presented. The tutorial is intended to provide participants with a solid understanding of basic SVC components and their integration in substation design and of control systems and their dynamic performance and commissioning of SVCs.
He has also lead and conducted various engineering studies associated with gas-insulated substation (GIS) applications, such as insulation coordination, lightning surge analysis, very fast transient investigation, grounding analysis, surge arrester application, and GIS enclosure current investigations associated with multi-point bonding and grounding.
Sullivan has worked for MEPPI since 2002. MEPPI is a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation of Japan, responsible for serving the North American power systems, metals production, rail transportation, and water treatment industries with electrical and electronic products, systems and services.
After earning his B.S. in Electrical Engineering Technology from the Pennsylvania State University in 1995, he began his career as a project engineer at Cross Electronics Inc. in Warrendale. In 1997 he joined the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority in Pittsburgh as an electrical engineer where he was generally responsible for planning and specification of all electrical distribution, generation and operating equipment throughout the plant and interceptor systems. Sullivan was part of an engineering team responsible for design and construction aspects of major capital improvement projects involving significant site utility and process control upgrades. He earned his Professional Engineer’s license in 2004 and a Masters of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in 2006.
“I owe much of my knowledge and engineering success to the industry experts that I have worked with over the years,” Sullivan said.
He is married and has three children in grade school to keep him busy, and finds time for coaching youth sports when he is not leading engineering work or delivering presentations and tutorials.