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NYPA Increases Investment in Phasor Measurement Units, Upgrades Convertible Static Compensator

Aug. 1, 2018
Broad Use of New Digitization Technologies Improve Situational Awareness, Increases Flexibility of Assets

The New York Power Authority has announced it is aggressively advancing efforts to deliver on its strategic initiative to build smart generation and transmission capabilities across New York State through an expansion of its Phasor Measurement Unit (PMU) program and upgrades to its Convertible Static Compensator (CSC). The two digitization projects support Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy for creating a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system.

“These two initiatives will help strengthen the reliability NYPA’s overall generation and transmission system by collecting data more efficiently and accurately, and giving us better visibility of real‑time asset performance so we can respond earlier and faster,” said Gil C. Quiniones, NYPA president and CEO.

NYPA owns and operates approximately one‑third of New York’s high‑voltage power lines. These lines transmit power from NYPA’s three large hydroelectric generation facilities and wind power generation facilities, connecting nearly 7,000 megawatts of renewable energy to New York State’s power grid. This includes connecting more than 6,200 megawatts of hydroelectric power and about 700 megawatts, or more than a third, of New York State‑generated wind energy to the grid.

The PMU program deploys sensors to collect voltage and current data at NYPA’s power generating facilities and switchyards with high‑resolution and precise time stamping. The collected data can then be pieced together and used for real‑time grid management, asset management and potential problem detection. NYPA was one of the first utilities nationwide to invest in PMUs. Through this program, which is scheduled to be completed in 2022, NYPA is expanding the PMU installation across all of its sites and is replacing earlier models with the latest, cutting‑edge PMU technology.

The CSC, a flexible alternating current transmission system (FACTS), increases power transfer capability, operational functionality and power flow control across the entire NYPA transmission system by converting direct current electricity to alternating current. In early 2018, NYPA completed upgrades to the CSC’s human machine interface (HMI), enabling operators to customize screens for better control. NYPA also partnered with North Carolina State University to test spare CSC control boards, ensuring that they are in working condition if replacements are needed for the CSC. This partnership will continue as NYPA works with NC State, through its Advanced Grid Innovation Laboratory for Energy (AGILe) initiative, to develop a model of the CSC using real-time digital simulation to perform control system board or other hardware-in-the-loop testing. This model will be completed in 2019 and can be adapted for additional types of testing or to help design future equipment that will eventually replace the CSC.

In combination, the PMU and CSC upgrade programs will help NYPA to build real‑time wide‑area monitoring capabilities as well as improve the overall reliability and resiliency of the state’s power system, marking another significant step in NYPA’s journey toward becoming the nation’s first end‑to‑end digital utility.

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