Tech blog...

What tripped India

»As the recent nightmarish blackout showed, India’s power woes lie not just on the production side. India has to mange its power better with the help of intelligent systems.

Unlike other energy commodities such as oil and coal, which move at a slow speed and can be stored easily, electricity moves at lightning speed. Forbes pointed out that when a glitch occurs, the cascading effect can bring down the grid at the blink of an eye.

Human responses can never be fast enough to pre-empt the breakdown; only smart grids running on sophisticated sensors, network and software can.

That is the lesson the US companies learnt after the 2003 blackout in that country,s says Forbes. PJM Interconnect, which operates a large US grid, reportedly has underground control centres that is straight from a Hollywood scene.

It collects data from 100,000 control points and crunch terabytes of data to enable real-time and automated troubleshooting. It cost PJM $200 million to build their smart grid, which is now generating operational savings of $2 billion a year, says Forbes.

Power Grid Corporation of India is moving though slowly to set up smart grids in the country. It plans to install 1,669 monitoring devices over the next few years.  A Reuters report noted that India is way behind China, which already has 1,000 monitoring devices and is set to nearly universalise them.  

Comments (+)