Exelon project teams receive five Electric Power Research Institute awards for innovation

Published on March 02, 2023 by Chris Galford

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In its 2022 Technology Transfer Awards, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) awarded five of its 21 honors to Exelon-led project teams for their work to transform energy and move toward cleaner deployments.

“It’s great to see Exelon take a leadership role in applying research to integrate emerging resources and leverage new technologies to increase grid reliability and resiliency,” Daniel Brooks, vice president of Integrated Grid and Energy Systems at EPRI, said. “The relationship between EPRI and Exelon is a true collaborative effort, and we congratulate everyone involved in these efforts.”

Each award stemmed from the Power Delivery and Utilization sector, honoring projects of unmanned aircraft systems for storm response, business capability model development for IT-OT investment alignment, modernization of distribution planning, model-based analysis of smart inverters to improve performance and compliance, and recloser testing and failure analysis. These were among those chosen from 84 total nominations in the latest awards.

Regarding unmanned aircraft systems, Exelon worked with PECO and EPRI to improve the efficacy of drone-based night inspections for storm damage assessment. Testing spanned several methods before concluding that real-time video in both infrared and visible light allowed for speedier damage assessment, work planning, and restoration.

The IT-OT model resulted from collaboration with EPRI, Ameren, ConEdison, National Grid, New York Power Authority, PNM Resources, and Salt River Project. Together, they applied and refined the business capability model for their purposes, ultimately resulting in a publicly available industry resource that EPRI will use for research and enterprise-level initiatives throughout the industry.

The distribution planning effort was likewise a sizeable team endeavor, joining together Exelon, EPRI, BGE, Ameren, Arizona Public Service, Consumers Energy, Dominion Energy, FirstEnergy, KEPCO, Knoxville Utility Board, LG&E/KU, Southern Company and the Tennessee Valley Authority to create an automated tool for utilities to use in evaluations of complex distribution planning assessments.

Then there were the analyses. Exelon worked with Duke Energy, FirstEnergy, Xcel Energy, Entergy, Orange and Rockland, Salt River Project, and EPRI on the smart inverter project, analyzing the technical impact and benefits of the advanced functions they make possible. Using these, the group created guidelines to improve overall DER performance, improve performance, and support compliance for utility clean energy goals. Meanwhile, Exelon also teamed up with ECO, Arizona Public Service, Dominion Energy, and United Illuminating – Avangrid, in collaboration with EPRI, to undertake lab tests on and identification of the best reclosers for grid modernization.