T&D World Magazine

Ambient Introduces Real-Time Current, Voltage Sensing to Grids Via BPL

Ambient Corporation has significantly enhanced its suite of products by integrating two intelligent grid applications into its core BPL communications platform for use in both overhead and underground systems.

Ambient’s energy sensing products further validate the benefits of building out a communications network, which allows a utility to have real-time visibility into its electrical grid. Achieving this without adding additional external equipment to the BPL communications platform represents a significant breakthrough in the market. Ambient’s ability for providing sensing capabilities is a non-intrusive, easily implemented, and cost-effective solution which is highly beneficial to utilities.

Real-time current sensing enables proactive instead of reactive management of distribution circuits, thereby increasing grid efficiency and reliability. This will allow the utility to not only know the operational status of a medium voltage circuit, but also know and monitor in real-time the amount of energy flowing through at any given point on the circuit.

Voltage sensing is useful for energy management, monitoring health and efficiency of transformers, and for identifying potentially problematic transformers enabling the utility to predict and prevent possible equipment failure. The voltage levels at the secondary side of the transformer can now be measured and reported continuously in real-time.

“We believe we have the first BPL system that enables such extensive and unique integration of key utility applications,” stated Ram Rao, chief technology officer at Ambient. “Ambient has always believed that utility applications are critical to the success of BPL systems and thus we have focused on the development of new products and applications in this area to benefit our utility partners, and future customers.”

Smart sensing applications are increasingly important in reducing the environmental impact of line loss and in reducing the economic impact of outages and power disruption estimated to cost U.S. businesses over $50 billion a year according to EPRI

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