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Study Shows Cloud-Based Data Exchange Will Improve Utility Response

May 18, 2019
Cloud-based data exchange for grid monitoring would improve utilities’ situational awareness and emergency response.

The New York Power Authority (NYPA) Research & Development group recently completed a project to use a cloud-based solution for operational monitoring and real-time analysis to improve grid visibility and response to fast-evolving events such as disruptive storms. The project was a joint proposal with Cornell University (CU), Washington State University (WSU), and ISO New England (ISO NE) that was funded in part by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) smart grid program.

This experiment, conducted by team experts, was the first in which NYPA and ISO NE shared their model, pre-recorded data and operational scenarios in a cloud-based exchange platform to run state estimation in real time and play back the result for visualization and monitoring. The results could be securely exported to operator control rooms or used as input for further analysis.

As the bulk power grid is structured now, each region is responsible for its own system security and reliability. However, in emergency situations, operators in distinct regions need to have a common shared view of the grid states to remediate issues in a consistent and coordinated manner. A shared repository could also host applications for data analysis and assist in day-to-day regional grid management, contingency response and planning. This project was a showcase for data exchange within New York and the entire New England area.

This collaborative project was a hands-on experience to address issues such as security requirement for sharing data, the kind of data that can be shared, the format that will be used, how the shared data may be used, running state estimation in real time and the obligations of each party with respect to security, reliability and coordination. 

The CU team brought extensive experience working on critical infrastructure challenges, and the WSU and ISO NE team brought extensive experience constructing applications for electric utility control centers. Outcomes were published and presented in CIGRE Symposium to share the results with other utilities and ISOs.

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