SCADA Applications in the Power Industry

Power systems deal with the generation of power, distribution and transmission sectors and their respective monitoring. Therefore, the application of SCADA systems in the power generation industry helps in improving the overall efficiency for the optimization, supervision, and control of the generating and transmitting units. The SCADA system functions to provide higher system reliability, scalability and stability for integrated grid operations.

 

scada power systems

The modern day SCADA systems have been modified to suit the dynamic business requirements. New functionalities have been added for better efficiency. The systems are designed to promote interactive and self-healing smarter grids of the future. It will, therefore, not be an exaggeration to say that the modern day SCADA systems are strategic investments that have all the utilities desired for facing the challenges of a competitive power domain. These systems also focus on the incremented levels of data exchange in real time.

A strategically organized SCADA network not only aids the utilities for delivering power in a reliable and responsible way but also affirms the safety of power delivery. Moreover, such a network helps in significant cost cutting, not to mention higher consumer satisfaction as well as retention.

Some of the key roles played by the SCADA systems in the power industry include:

  • Organized planning in the reliability of the electric grid resulting in increased revenue
  • Higher reliability by active detection and diffusion of problems at the root levels
  • Increasing consumer satisfaction by complying with the mandated power quality criteria
  • Helping informing real-time decisions in a strategic way

How does SCADA help achieve the optimum power generation levels?

The heart of SCADA is the programmable logic controllers (PLC). The PLCs link the hardware and bus with the SCADA software platform. This results in giving an optimal solution for all the process workflows which is flexible with the advanced control mechanism.

Some of the basic functions of SCADA in the power generation plants include:

  • Regular monitoring of frequency and speed
  • Geographical monitoring of water treatment and coal delivery
  • Planning of operations
  • Supervision of circuit breakers, relays and other safety paraphernalia
  • Reactive and active power control
  • Load scheduling and turbine protection
  • Historical data processing

SCADA implementation in the distribution systems

The power distribution systems deal with electric power transmission from the station to the loads. A majority of utility companies depend on manual intervention for performing the tasks of distribution, the power to load interruption, diagnostics and so on. In such a scenario, the implementation of SCADA systems in the power distribution area eliminates the need for manual working as well as the expenses associated with it, thereby making the operations automated and smooth with minimal disruptions.

Some of the functions that the SCADA systems can handle effortlessly include:

  • Improving the efficiency of the power system
  • Continuous monitoring of various electrical parameters
  • Historian data analysis
  • Fast service to customer response interruptions
  • Monitoring of normal and abnormal conditions and sending alerts
  • Enabling operators on the trends and alarms for problem identification

 

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