Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. (SEL) and On-Ramp Wireless have successfully conducted a field test with a utility firm within their distribution network. This field test demonstrates the capability to connect wireless sensors across the distribution grid, considerably decreasing time to repair, restore and isolate service to consumers.
SEL’s Wireless Sensors for Overhead Lines (WSO) were coupled with the On-Ramp Ultra-Link Processing (ULP) wireless communication system that was fully integrated. Real-time condition and fault indication information, such as momentary event counters and average hourly load, were observed by means of the sensor and reported through the integrated radio. This provided an in-depth view of the performance of the distribution grid. These results can be utilized for grid automation, capital planning, long-term grid efficiency and predictive maintenance.
The field test was conducted on an area spanning around 200 square miles that comprised mountainous terrain and offered wireless communication with the use of overhead distribution wireless sensors. Conducted on the operational distribution grid of the utility, the field test showed a 100% event and status report delivery rate throughout the complete duration of the test.
All event and status information gathered by means of the sensor were delivered by the ULP communication system of On-Ramp Wireless during the test. The data was available through a Web Services Application, facilitating to monitor the threshold and fault status, thereby providing the utility with the required information to make plans and decisions for future changes to the grid conditions.