Participation by utility companies is an important component of the Texas state wildfire mitigation project. Participating utility companies have the following responsibilities.
Join Wildfire Project Advisory Council – The advisory council will provide a forum to keep all stakeholders informed and to solicit their guidance. The composition of the council is described more fully on a separate page.
Select appropriate circuits – Utilities will select circuits to instrument and monitor for the project. A separate page discusses multiple considerations for the selection of these circuits.
Provide circuit maps – For each instrumented circuit, the participating utility company will be asked to provide TEES with an electronic, GIS-based circuit map containing line routing, device placements and settings, fault currents along the main and lateral lines, etc.
Acquire hardware for installation in substations – State funds provide for all of TEES’s support services and for one-time costs related to implementation of the monitoring hardware. They also subsidize the acquisition of monitoring hardware. Participating utility companies will purchase monitoring hardware at a discounted price. The first step in this process will be execution of a document committing the utility company and setting the schedule for initial and final payments.
Install hardware in substations – The monitoring devices install in 19” racks in substations, similar to the installation of modern digital relays, and monitor one circuit per device, by connecting to three CTs and three PTs. Bus PTs are suitable but must be wired directly to each circuit monitoring device, even where multiple circuit monitoring devices are installed on circuits from a single bus.
Provide Internet access to substations – Circuit monitoring devices in substations contain “intelligence” to monitor circuit health and events, but the results must be delivered to personnel to have full value. Participating utility companies will be responsible for providing Internet access to each monitoring device, so that each device can make and maintain an Internet connection to the TEES master station on the Texas A&M campus.
Work cooperatively with investigators to respond to failure events and evaluate performance –Proper assessment of project success requires proper documentation of events occurring on participating utility company circuits. Proper documentation requires cooperation between the utility company and TEES personnel.