TADP 543 Elec Grid Ops

Course Information:  Electrical Grid Operations.  3 credits.  An examination and study of the fundamental operating principles, guidelines and policies of the WECC (Western Electricity Coordinating Council) that promote reliable interconnected grid operation.

The student will acquire the subject matter expertise and appreciation for the inner-workings of a large interconnected utility system.  In addition, the students will develop a skill set that includes knowledge of how electricity is generated, transmitted, and consumed, as well as the ability to analyze complex transmission operational situations and make qualified judgments and recommendations to mitigate transmission related problems.  

Course Description/Objectives:

Module 1 (1 week)-will focus on learning the history of NERC and WECC organizations, why they were formed, how they have changed, their importance and how they affect the utilities.   Assignments require the students to research NERC/WECC information and to prepare a discussion paper on the cause and effect of these organizations.

Module 2 (2 weeks)-will focus on the understanding the NERC/WECC policies and guidelines and how it applies to operating the bulk transmission system.

Module 3 (2 weeks)-will focus on the analysis of system operating case studies, understanding the data requirement, determining if a problem exists and developing alternative short term solutions of operating the transmission system without violating of the WECC/NERCC policies.

Module 4 (2 weeks)-is an extension of Module 3, where the students will be given an operating scenario (Powerflow case or set of data), determine the problem and criteria violation, and finally develop a long-term solution.

Recent Student Evaluations:

  • This course was probably my favorite of the program so far. It was a good mix of technical analysis (PowerWorld simulator and system parameters) along with applicable regulations and NERC/WECC standards. 
  • I will definitely make sure we are using good communication (at work) with our field workers during operations to prevent misinformation from occurring as it had in the last couple of major events we reviewed.
  • Favorite (part of class) - the "case studies" - looking at what happened when things went wrong, why, how the issue(s) were resolved, and what was learned. 
  • (The final project) was good to review past mistakes to avoid future ones. This gave us a chance to sort through the disturbance and fully learn the sequence of events. 
  • Disturbance analysis was my favorite (part of class).  Standards and compliance was least favorite, but I acknowledge it's a necessary topic