Service disruptions are, regrettably, inevitable. GE Digital’s software offerings help the utility to train its people and prepare for the worst. The machine learning tools offer access to a playback feature allowing users to go back in time and leverage past experiences to continuously improve and make more informed decisions going forward. Some utilities today, based on their geography, don’t expect a lot of weather-related incidents. Yet, factoring in the changing global environment, having a weather-related outage response plan in place makes sense.
Additionally, with growing momentum for distributed energy resources (DERs), the utility that may not have had to consider the impact of storms in the past may become more attuned to weather conditions. GE Digital’s data management platform helps the utility to know and understand its network as the number of devices connected to the grid grows, notably thanks to the extensive use of the most advanced protocols such as IEEE 2030.5, which enables to affordably collect data from and send controls to the field over the internet in a very secure manner, connecting even the smallest smart device. Instead of waiting to harness the power of the available data when the worst happens, it is better to build out the visibility in advance.
Collecting data has grown more affordable and efficient for utilities. The important thing is to make the data meaningful while being able to share it across the organization to understand whether an outage was directly or indirectly weather related. This means thinking beyond a tree being blown down by extreme winds. Utilities must also consider service disruptions caused by an asset being extremely hot for too long or some other indirect weather factor.