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Brazil Uses EPRI Training Simulator to Ensure High Reliability During World Cup

July 15, 2014
Top-notch soccer players at this year’s World Cup in Brazil may end up running 7-8 miles over the course of a match. That takes a lot of energy.

Top-notch soccer players at this year’s World Cup in Brazil may end up running 7-8 miles over the course of a match. That takes a lot of energy. Providing reliable power to the stadiums where these matches are held takes a lot of energy as well.

As the world’s largest sporting event, the World Cup is putting the Brazilian power system to the test. Operador Nacional do Sistema Elétrico (ONS), the national operator of the Brazilian electric system, uses EPRI’s Operator Training Simulator to ensure its operators are prepared to respond to situations that might disrupt power to the World Cup venues – and the broader Brazilian population. ONS has deployed the Operator Training Simulator at its national control center and at its four regional control centers. Several transmission control centers across the country also have accessed the OTS remotely.

“Considering the global significance of the World Cup, we’ve taken a number of extra measures to reduce the chances of power disruptions across Brazil,” said Ronaldo Schuck, ONS Operations Director. “The simulation exercises provided our operators with the opportunity to test their awareness and actions in real-world scenarios.”

“The Operator Training Simulator replicates the behavior of a power system as it responds to changes in operating conditions or to system events such as a downed power line or a power plant outage,” said Mark McGranaghan, EPRI vice president. “The response time is similar to that of a real power system, enabling trainees to gain experience in dealing with incidents such as a morning load increase or emergency events such as a cascading outage leading to a blackout. If a trainee sees a cascading outage, for example, the simulator can help to explore potential preventive measures such as local load shedding.”

In advance of the World Cup, ONS expanded the Operator Training Simulator model to include the lower-voltage transmission circuits that feed each of the soccer venues. Training sessions conducted with ONS and the regional transmission operators ensured that system operators could successfully reroute power if the primary substations were to fail. 

The Operator Training Simulator package is supported and maintained by EPRI, IncSys, and PowerData Corporation. In North America, the Operator Training Simulator has been used to train operators from the majority of the reliability coordinators, transmission operators, and balancing authorities registered by the North American Electric Reliability Corp. (NERC).

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