T&D World Magazine

California Utilities Deploy Underground Distribution Automation Pilots

On-Ramp Wireless, developer of wireless solutions for energy automation, has announced the results of its U.S. Department of Energy-funded field trials at San Diego Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison. The DOE awarded On-Ramp Wireless and its project team members a $2.1 million project to integrate and demonstrate its award-winning wireless network solution for below-ground distribution automation, including outage detection and distribution transformer monitoring. The demonstrated performance results prove that On-Ramp’s solution exceeds DOE’s stated 2016 Smart Grid Performance Target to improve System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI), an important metric of electric grid reliability, by greater than 10%.

The goal of the project was to leverage wireless network automation and information technology to improve electric grid reliability, a critical national need. With a cellular-like network that was purpose-built for utility automation, On-Ramp’s solution can service both powered and battery-operated sensors in below ground locations of the utility environment and across disparate geographies. The ability to support multiple applications like electric grid reliability, advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) and critical infrastructure monitoring enables the solution to deliver Smart Grid benefits at a total cost of ownership significantly lower than existing technologies.

 

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