T&D World Magazine

Western Australia Utility to Deploy GE Energy Network Management

GE Energy will provide its Electrical Network Management and Control (ENMAC) Trouble Call Management System and its ENMAC Mobile application to Western Power Corporation of Western Australia. Western Power operates an isolated interconnected electrical network.

Western Power currently has approximately 800,000 customers, with the population of Western Australia growing at the rate of eight to 12 percent per year. Under typical network conditions, WPC receives between 200 to 300 trouble calls on a daily basis. However, in storm situations, there can be up to 50,000 calls per day.

After evaluating solutions to meet detailed functional requirements within a COTS (Commercially available, Off-The-Shelf) framework, Western Power determined that it needed an open, scalable and reliable architecture suitable for supporting critical, real-time, 24/7 operations. GE Energy’s ENMAC Trouble Call Management System (TCS) will replace Western Power’s existing system.

GE Energy provides seamless integration of ENMAC Network Management System (NMS) and TCS with ENMAC Mobile for operational switching and OMS job dispatch. The capability to safely manage crew switching on the network with the crews interacting directly with the switching log is a major advantage unique to Australia and being used by only one other utility worldwide. This is achieved because ENMAC contains an intelligent connectivity model that continually checks proposed and actual switching instructions against the safety logic. This ensures, for instance, that network sections are fully isolated before allowing earthing/grounding connections to be made. Additionally, the safety checks in the Mobile application assist the crew in properly understanding the instruction and properly implementing it.

“Our ENMAC Mobile product removes all communication delays and automatically updates the diagram without any unnecessary interaction for operators. This direct interface improves network status accuracy and visibility in real time,” said Bob Gilligan, general manager of GE Energy’s transmission and distribution business. “Since Western Power already uses our Distribution Power Analysis in cycle mode to support network switching, this approach will make this one of the safest and most automated operational process in the world.”

GE Energy’s ENMAC TCS will integrate customer fault calls with the real-time status of the distribution network, enabling staff to provide accurate information to customers on loss of supply. It will also enable the deployment of maintenance crews and the tracking of incidents through completion of repairs and reports.

Western Power first went live with GE Energy’s ENMAC SCADA and network management system in August 2003, followed by a rollout of ENMAC Distribution Power Analysis in 2005. The ENMAC distribution management system as used by Western power today provides a modular and flexible client-server architecture comprising a number of collaborative software applications.

Western Power is a government-owned corporation situated in the southwest of Western Australia that transports electricity from power stations to towns and cities and then distributed it to homes and business via a large network of power lines known as the South West Interconnected System or SWIS.

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