CURRENT Group has announced the deployment of its Volt/VAR Control solution with Xcel Energy as part of the SmartGridCity project in Boulder, Colorado. The Volt/VAR Control solution is part of the CURRENT System Optimization software application suite and operates on the CURRENT OpenGrid platform.
Volt/VAR technology, designed to reduce energy consumption through the regulation and management of voltages and VARs, enables utilities to minimize losses on the electric grid, reduce carbon emissions and use fuel more efficiently. Emerging trends in distributed generation, renewable portfolio standards and energy efficiency targets create heightened system balance complexity and increase stress on the grid. These conditions require visibility and control of the distribution system through intelligent automation technologies. Xcel Energy is using CURRENT's dynamic Volt/VAR solution in SmartGridCity to monitor grid conditions in real-time in order to minimize the impact of VARs across the distribution system.
The Volt/VAR Control solution enables utilities to manage voltage and VARs based on monitored real-time conditions throughout the distribution system. Real-time data to the OpenGrid platform is combined with geospatial, asset, SCADA and other operational data from capacitor banks, substations and other grid devices to determine the correct actions to optimize the control of voltage and VARs dynamically 24x7. The advanced optimization algorithm achieves the concurrent goals of minimizing losses and optimizing delivered voltage. CURRENT Volt/VAR Control serves as the foundation of the CURRENT Dynamic Voltage Optimization solution, which is designed to reduce the need for costly reserves and backup generation.