An e-eye on network

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Published: April 8, 2015 12:03:34 AM

New system will help PGCIL resolve technical issues quickly

The state-owned power transmission behemoth Power Grid Corporation (PGCIL) is in the final stages of implementing the National Transmission Asset Management Centre (NTAMC) project, a system that would give the company a bird’s eye view of its vast network spread across the country and help resolve technical issues quickly.

The Maharatna has, in the last 25 years, developed a vast electrical network which includes transmission lines that traverse through the scenic as well as the most hostile terrains of the country. The network of lines travels through the rugged Himalayas, vast tracts of forests, marshes and deserts. These lines are interspersed with critical infrastructure in the form of sub-stations.

“To manage and control such a vast network, we decided, around three years back, that information technology should be leveraged to maximise efficiency, bring about transparency in operations and optimise utilisation of the assets that are spread across the country. This resulted in the conceptualisation of the National Transmission Asset Management Centre (NTAMC) project”, a PGCIL official told FE.

The project will eventually have national level control centres at Manesar in addition to nine regional control centres that will remotely operate 192 sub-stations of the firm and manage assets. All the sub-stations and assets will have visibility through close circuit cameras with video analytics.

“The system will provide experts sitting at different location access to the intelligent electronic devices (IEDs) for fault analysis and speedy decision-making even for assets that are located in far flung areas. The system will have facility for automatic fault analysis, making it possible for us to sort out issues in a coordinated manner,” the official said.

The company has grown rapidly in the last two decades and it now boasts of more than 113,000cKm of transmission lines operating at 400 & 765 KV voltage levels. PGCIL also owns 189 sub-stations, with a transformation capacity of more than 220, 300 MVA. The spurt in the firm’s assets necessitated a centralised monitoring system that could also solve major technical issues quickly.

Apart from the main control centre, nine regional control centres are in various stages of completion. These control centres will be operating in a predefined hierarchical order with clearly defined roles. Experts in various domains of power and associated systems will be manning these sub-stations on 24×7 basis. This way, expert advice will be available to engineers in far-flung sub stations and transmission line offices.

The PSU believes that once the NTAMC project is fully functional, it will prove to be a major turning point for the company and the power sector.

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