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12 minutes | 7 days ago
The Missing Piece to the Puzzle: Software Engineers Fit Within the Power Industry
Take a moment to think of all the aspects of the grid that are currently microprocessor-driven. Not only relays and RTUs in a control house or SCADA center, but also pole-top reclosers, battery banks, transformer monitors, microgrid controllers, and of course the familiar smart meter. The list goes on and is ever-growing. Where there are microprocessors, there is computer code controlling them, and so the electricity grid is steadily becoming an ideal place to stake a career in software engineering.
21 minutes | a month ago
Engineering Practices, Processes, and Projects from an Outsider’s Perspective
This episode provides an independent view of the engineering process from a professional service provider who is not an engineer. This is a valuable perspective because, while it shares a similar background with engineering, architecture often invokes a more human feel to its processes. This can offer a higher level of focus on customer-oriented goals rather than simply the design specifications. Aligning an engineering firm's core values and culture with a client’s stated goals and anticipated outcomes can lead to more than just project success. It allows the work to achieve goals beyond just the design and construction of a physical asset. Working to understand those goals can position a firm in a specialized light compared to its industry peers.
22 minutes | 3 months ago
Maximizing the Power Grid’s Transfer Capacity
The power grid of today is experiencing uses and applications that were envisioned as the grid was originally designed and built over the course of the last century. Due to new technologies and the generation/use of electricity, we need new ideas on how to design/operate the grid to optimize its benefits to society. Some of these new ideas center around what might be the essence of grid infrastructure and maximizing the ability of the grid to transfer power. Guest: Michael Longoria, Senior Director of Customer Solutions, Smart Wires
19 minutes | 4 months ago
Connecting the Bridge Between Traditional Engineering Packages and Technology Innovation in Utility EPC Projects
The utility industry for the most part has not had many changes for decades when it comes to engineering and information provided to build transmission and distribution lines. Most lines have a life cycle of 40-50 years with regular maintenance. The issues arise due to the lack of record-keeping and red line drawings to capture changes made during its life cycle. To confront these challenges successfully, the industry must go through a change in mindset to use the latest technologies hardly used in our industry. The use of electronic IFC packages, along with cloud servers and tablets, can make a big difference to increase efficiency.
30 minutes | 4 months ago
Economic and Reliability Impact of Power Quality
Power quality is one of the most challenging and exciting parts of modern utility practice. It is also one of the most misunderstood. Often quality and reliability are confused as the same thing. Today we will be discussing, how power quality is defined from a standards perspective and the implications of grid modernization on the quality of the power system.
27 minutes | 6 months ago
Optimizing Load Tap Changer and Voltage Regulator Control in Distribution to Stabilize Voltage with DER Penetration
The impact of distributed energy resources (DER), specifically for solar and wind power, continues to be challenging for many utilities with increased DER penetration. Problems associated with DER include: reverse power conditions, fast and unpredictable voltage fluctuations, excessive on-load tap changer transformer (OLTT) operations, and “hunting” conflicts between OLTTs, distribution capacitor banks, and active VAR DER. In this podcast, we discuss “smart control” methodologies that help mitigate these issues—without costly communication systems—while fostering volt/VAR optimization, minimizing voltage constrained hosting barriers, and as a signal for controlling VAR and watt output.
23 minutes | 6 months ago
Adopting AutoCAD Electrical for Substation P&C Design
Strategic planning is a phase that often does not get the attention it deserves when it comes to building and standardizing new design tools for the utility industry. In this episode, we discuss how important the planning phase is for this transition, the conversations that should be had, and the considerations that should be made before any real work begins.
24 minutes | 7 months ago
Power Grid Supply Chain Security: Past, Present, and Future
This episode highlights cybersecurity and supply chain risk management. Currently, supply chain is being driven by the regulatory standard NERC CIP-013 and the new executive order. This episode provides guidance and considerations when developing a program to address supply chain security. Host: Dr. Nathan Wallace, Director & Co-Founder of GridIntel and Cybirical Special Guest: Chris Humphreys, CEO of The Anfield Group, Former NERC Auditor
28 minutes | 9 months ago
Is FUD (Fear, Uncertainty & Doubt) Holding You Back From Adopting the Cloud?
This episode features a round-table discussion regarding FUD – Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt - and touches on topics that may be holding entities back from adopting the Cloud. The stage is set by framing the discussion in the context of dispelling misconceptions of Cloud FUD by simply asking the following three questions: First - Should we be replacing Fear with Facts? Second - Would it be better to be proactive and remove uncertainty by developing and implementing an action plan? Third- Can you alleviate doubt with experience and testing?
25 minutes | 9 months ago
Security, Compliance, and the Cloud: Where We Are Today
This episode is the third in our continuing series regarding cloud hosted, software as a service solutions, and security considerations. Our first podcast was focused on cloud based solutions and security for power systems. In the second podcast, we discussed cloud data security (the where, who, and how). In this episode, we will take a deeper dive into where we are today with security, compliance, and the cloud. Host: Dr. Nathan Wallace, Director & Co-Founder of GridIntel and Cybirical.Special Guest: Maggy Powell, Security Assurance (Power & Utility Sector), Amazon Web Services
18 minutes | a year ago
Cloud Data Security – The Where, Who and How
This is the second episode in a series of podcasts based on cloud-based solutions. In our previous episode, we discussed an overview of cloud solutions and security features. This episode dives a little deeper on customer engagement with the cloud and some technical aspects of cloud solutions. Host: Dr. Nathan Wallace, Director & Co-Founder of GridIntel and Cybirical Special Guest: Ranjan Banerji, Senior Partner Solutions Architect of Amazon Web Services (AWS)
17 minutes | a year ago
Cloud Based Solutions & Security for Power Systems
Cloud computing or hosted solutions by a Cloud Services Provider or CSP are ever increasing across the utility industry landscape. Many utilities have been slow or reluctant to embrace these solutions due in part to the amount of unfounded FUD (Fear, Uncertainly, and Doubt) that has been surrounding software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions.In this episode, we will discuss cloud hosting, an overview of security and user access, and discuss some organizational considerations when implementing SaaS solutions. Host: Dr. Nathan Wallace, Director & Co-Founder of GridIntel and Cybirical. Special Guest: Samara Moore, Amazon Web Services (AWS) Security Assurance Senior Manager and Global Energy Specialist *This will be the first in a series focused on this topic with each subsequent podcast taking a deeper dive into a specific area including access control, cross-server data sharing, workload use cases, and CIP compliance to name a few.
36 minutes | a year ago
Using Technology to Predict the Future in Occupational Health & Safety
Rod Courtney (Ampirical's HSE Manager) discusses how companies within the power industry can develop a pervading culture of safety based on a commitment to safety excellence that improves safety performance, operational effectiveness, and business performance.
21 minutes | 2 years ago
Emerging Trends in Grid Modernization Efforts
Over the past decade, several utilities and commissions have made investments into new technologies, tools, and techniques to modernize the electric grid. As some of these investments are reaching full implementation, there is an opportunity for other utilities and their regulators who are contemplating similar investments to learn from the experiences of the “early adopters.”One key component of a successful grid modernization effort is customer engagement. Utilities are moving away from the “ratepayer” mindset and are seeking new ways to turn into more customer-centric organizations. More and more customers are interested in new technologies, more rate options, and access to cleaner energy choices. Utilities’ grid modernization efforts will help meet these new needs and demands from their customers.
19 minutes | 2 years ago
Keeping the Lights On: The Value of Technology for the Everyday Lineman
Lineman Appreciation Day Special Edition Podcast: Ray Beck, journeyman lineman, discusses how technology is helping improve productivity and efficiency for linemen in the field.
18 minutes | 2 years ago
The Value Proposition for Designing Substations in 3D
Jason Phillpott, long time veteran of 3D modeling, discusses how utilities can extract value from applying 3D and other new technologies to substation design.
19 minutes | 2 years ago
Grid Resiliency through Emergency Planning and Natural Disaster Risk Mitigation
Our previous episode discussed the need for utilities to share their outage data with their communities and we touched on the Department of Energy’s Outage Data Initiative.In this episode, we hear from a utility veteran to get his perspective on the topic, along with how it could lead to fire mitigation and other emergency planning programs.
27 minutes | 2 years ago
The Critical Need for Electric Utilities to Share Outage Data
Sean Griffin and Scott Sternfeld, Co-Founders of Agile Inclusion, discuss the critical need for electric utilities to share their data with public agencies and others in an attempt to improve emergency response and increase security of our communities.
17 minutes | 2 years ago
IT Meets OT: Integrating Cyber Protection in Power System Designs
It’s a brand new world for power system engineers. Nathan Wallace, Cybirical Co-Founder/Director of Cyber Operations, discusses the importance of designing systems to achieve cybersecurity goals. Wallace also discusses tools that will help utilities and other asset owners reap the benefits of technology while being protected from cyber threats.
20 minutes | 2 years ago
Intelligent, Real Time Project Status Tool for T&D Line Construction
Kurt Traub, Ampirical's Vice President of T&D Line Engineering, discusses how Ampirical has found a viable solution to document control and progress-tracking problems using PLS-CADD, Google Earth, and a cloud storage system.
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