T&D World Magazine

Smart-Sensor Development Adds Self-Healing Intelligence to the Smart Grid

Exacter, Inc. has completed its Phase I design of embedded technology to detect grid health using remote, smart grid end devices.

“When equipment on the distribution system begins to arc or leak current, it can result in power outages, protective equipment operations, and data transmission problems–shutting down smart grid functionality on the feeder,” said John Lauletta, CEO of Exacter, Inc. “Billions of dollars are being invested in new Smart Grid systems. Utilities can enhance their systems to continuously assess the health of the grid. This smart-sensor will provide grid intelligence for improved grid reliability.”

The device uses Exacter’s patented technology to identify damaged power equipment like loose splices, cracked insulators, and damaged surge arresters.

“If the millions of smart grid devices now being added to the country’s electrical network could also tell the utility of localized equipment problems, the vision of a self-healing grid moves closer to reality,” Lauletta said. “We are working to provide the right embeddable platform for EXACTER technology and are in partner discussions to create the OEM components for this Smart-Sensor application.”

Since 2006, Exacter’s patented technology has been used to provide utilities with predictive intelligence for outage prevention, system hardening, and overall reliability. The design of the sensor uses the EXACTER Failure Signature Library to identify electric utility equipment that should be replaced.

“We are in discussion with equipment and communication system providers that understand the opportunity to add health assessment in all Smart Grid components” said Vice President Geoffrey Bibo. “The manufacturers who have initiated discussions share our vision of a more reliable grid resulting from predictive, conditions-based intelligence that enables preventive maintenance programs.”

“This technology is designed to operate with any smart grid end-device used for measurement, control, or communication applications to support smart grid reliability and functionality,” Lauletta said. “Immediate applications for the sensor are intriguing and we continue to evaluate other partnerships.”

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