A system speeds up smart grid recovery from unpredictable faults – saving costs while ensuring that customers get electricity even in extreme weather conditions.
4 July 2012
Speeding up smart grid recovery from faults
An automated system speeds up smart grid
recovery from unpredictable faults – saving costs
while ensuring that people have electricity in their
homes even in extreme weather conditions. Early
pilots are already operating in real life networks in
During extreme weather conditions like storms, trees
fall and lines get broken. One cannot prevent trees Grid operation center. © Fortum
from falling but it is possible to make the recovery of
electric lines faster and the affected areas smaller.
To respond to these challenges, Finnish power companies and IT providers joined their forces to
create a solution that would address electricity outages due to extreme weather conditions.
The system can quickly identify where in the electricity lines the faults have occurred, getting a
head start in fixing the problematic areas.
Moreover, it can identify how much time it would take to fix the fault and communicate that to the
end consumer, which is important particularly when faced with extreme weather conditions like
Thus, the system makes power cuts shorter and smaller in scale, which means fewer resources are
needed to identify and fix problems.
The only alternative solution to reduce power cuts due to extreme weather conditions is to replace
overhead lines with underground cabling. However, burying cables underground is expensive and
time-consuming, while the new automation solution can deliver quick results with smaller
The system, developed under the Smart Grids and Energy Markets (SGEM) program under the
CLEEN Ltd (Strategic Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation for Energy and
Environment), is not about any individual piece of technology but it is rather an overarching system
The developers include ABB, Elenia, Fortum, Helen, Viola Systems, Emtele, Nokia Siemens
Networks, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Tampere University of Technology.
The CLEEN Ltd was established in 2008 to facilitate and coordinate world class industry driven
research in the field of energy and environment.
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