PG&E EPIC Distribution Automation Project

The California Public Utility Commission recently budgeted $30 Million for demonstration and deployment projects at California Investor Owned Utilities (IOU’s). The objectives of this program are to “install and operate pre-commercial technologies or strategies at a scale sufficiently large and in conditions sufficiently reflective of anticipated actual operating environments to enable appraisal of the operational and performance characteristics and the financial risks.”

TAV Networks supports several of the EPIC projects underway at PG&E. Line Sensors are expected to play an important future role in Distribution Automation, and they represent an alternative to more expensive distribution assets. The potential applications of Line Sensors include:

  • Remotely monitoring the operational status of hydraulic and other manually operated reclosers
  • Remotely monitoring substations that do not have SCADA and digital relay capability
  • Use as a planning tool to remotely monitor and report load
  • Monitoring the status of fuses on capacitor banks
  • Monitoring circuit balance at points along the distribution circuit
  • Potentially useful for monitoring vegetation growth, based on small interruptions or current fluctuations