With every new smart device, with every program, app and gadget, and with every step towards more comprehensive digitalization, the dependence on a constant supply of electricity increases. Accordingly, supply reliability is becoming more crucial while consumers are becoming less forgiving of interruptions.
Enexis, a major Distribution Network Operator (DNO) in the Netherlands, is one of the forward thinking players in the European utility market, which has been acutely aware of this situation for a while. Working together with Landis+Gyr, Enexis is successfully implementing Distribution Automation for its medium and low voltage network. The main goal for the implementation of the solution is to improve the quality of power distribution; in other words, to reduce frequency and duration of power outages.
A success story
Power distribution quality is typically measured in terms of the duration and the frequency of outages, using System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) and System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI). Over the course of a year, SAIDI indicates the average duration of outages, while SAIFI quantifies the average number of interruptions for each customer.
Enexis had set itself an ambitious goal: to reduce the SAIDI number from 87 minutes per customer to five minutes, for 50 percent of client base its who are supplied via automated medium and low-voltage networks.
The cooperation between Enexis and the Landis+Gyr has been extremely effective: The Dutch DNO managed to reduce the outage to not just five, but to three minutes for its customers supplied via automated networks, which at the time of writing is approximately 10% of the client base.
“First and foremost, we wanted to stabilize our future SAIDI figure on 2008 performance-level, taking into account the aging of our assets and consequently an expected increase in outages,” says Ivan Theunissen, Project Manager for Enexis. “Though SAIFI was not an explicit part of the original scope, the advanced insight into load conditions provides us with the information for corrective actions, which in turn improves SAIFI. Within the project this has not yet been quantified.”
In order to achieve its goal, Enexis began working with PowerSense, who developed and produced smart supervision and control systems for the power distribution industry. The solution, designed to retrofit and digitalize existing power distribution infrastructures, was originally a development project for optical fault passage detection by innovative Danish energy provider DONG. In 2006, the development project was spun-off into the company PowerSense A/S in which DONG Energy kept 30 percent of the stocks until PowerSense’s acquisition by Landis+Gyr in 2014.
“We are very satisfied with project’s progress and our cooperation with Landis+Gyr has worked very well,” comments Theunissen. At this point Enexis has rolled out more than 500 Remote Monitoring Units to automate its distribution network and is planning to install a further 300 in 2015.
- Meeting SAIDI/SAIFI requirements to improve grid reliability
- Landis+Gyr to strengthen DONG Energy’s metering management