The 1,900+ operators (transmission and generator owners, distribution providers) who work on the four interconnected grids across the United States, Canada, and part of Mexico are well aware of the intricacies of generation and delivery of bulk electricity. And it is up to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) to provide the guidance, standards, education, and compliance activities that keep the lights on in our cities, homes, and businesses.
NERC measures compliance activities by monitoring, registering, and certifying organizations that power North America. Noncompliance or violations are subject to penalties based on severity and duration.
Two of the 14 NERC mandatory standards subject to enforcement are Protect and Control (PRC) and Facilities Design, Connections, and Maintenance (FAC). While PRC-005-6 of PRC deals with the implementation of a program for the maintenance of all Protection Systems, Automatic Reclosing, and Sudden Pressure Relaying affecting the reliability of the Bulk Electric System (BES), FAC-008 of FAC deals with the implementation of a Facility Rating Methodology to determine system operating limits. FAC-008 states that there must be a record of most limiting series elements from all equipment on the line.
PRC-005 and FAC-008 require that the operators have their own Protection System Maintenance Program (PSMP) and Facilities Ratings Maintenance program (FRMP) to meet the requirements of NERC’s compliance monitoring and enforcement program.
The eSMART software from MinMax allows its compliance users to quickly set up their PSMP and FRMP programs by following the guidelines from their enforcing regional entities. While eSMART allows PSMP to track Verification, Monitoring, Testing, Inspection, and Calibration, it will enable FRMP to perform thermal rating calculations using industry-standard algorithms for rating conductors and transformers Switches, Wave Traps, CTs, Protective Relays, etc.