CESC, Kolkata engages Silver Spring Networks for Smart Grid Initiative

Households in Jodh pur Park and a locality close to Park Circus will soon switch to a smart grid that is comparable to networks in cities like Paris Washington DC, San Francisco, Chicago, Melbourne and Copenhagen. “In eight to 10 months 25,000 electricity consumers in two pockets of south Kolkata will be on board a pilot project that will make the service smart, reliable and transpa rent. It will help the consumer monitor and manage the con sumption. At the supply end CESC will be able to monitor lo ad and take proactive action to prevent faults or repair them instead of waiting for the con sumer to first log their compla int and react thereafter,“ CESC chairman Sanjiv Goenka said. CESC has partnered with US­based firm SilverSpring Networks to explore opportunities in India. If the pilot succeeds, CESC will try to bring 30 lakh consumers under the fold within three­four years. In the smart grid system, a consumer can check the hourly consumption in a smart device.It will help them identify power vampires that consume power even when not in use. CESC, on the other hand, will be able to manage its load and outage better. It will receive alerts if the system becomes vulnerable. In case a fault does happen, it will be automatically alerted and can restore power from the remote control centre.“Response to outages will be instant. While it will be less than 1 minute in minor cases, the av erage restoration time will be much less than 30 minutes at present,“ said CESC MD Aniruddha Basu. While CESC high tension consumers have meters and the utility's transformers have smart devices that transmits data, SilverSpring will now set up a radio­frequency canopy mesh for CESC that will network all field devices.

“The system will allow the utility to identify a potential problem area. For instance, if there are big voltage variations in the supply to a particular set of consumers, it could indicate that the transformer upstream is going to blow up. Often, adjustments can be done to pre vent it,“ explained SilverSpring executive vice­president Eric Dresselhuys

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Smart Grid Bulletin February 2019

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