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PMUs and Synchrophasor Data Flows in North America

February 2014
NASPI, PMU, SynchroPhasor, data flows

In every significant blackout in North America over recent decades, grid operators" lack of "wide-area situational awareness" has been found to be a significant contributing factor causing the blackout. Situational awareness for a grid operator entails being able to track what is happening over time and space (topology) on the grid, understand what it means, and anticipate what could happen next and how the operator might be able to affect it. Accurate, granular grid condition monitoring and wide-area visualization are essential requirements for effective situational awareness.

With the 2009 funding of 13 synchrophasor projects under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, the North American electric industry added over 800 new phasor measurement units and numerous synchrophasor data communications networks into the power grid.