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Snohomish County PUD - Smart Grid Infrastructure Modernization of Electrical Distribution System - July 2014

June 2014
U.S. Department of Energy
Snohomish County, PUD, WECC, Washington, Smart Grid Infrastructure Modernization

Snohomish County Public Utility District, Washington, (Snohomish PUD) upgraded 42 of 85 substations with automated control capabilities to prepare the substations for full-scale deployment of distribution automation (DA) and integration of distributed energy resources. The project deployed DA upgrades to 10 targeted circuits in a 90-square-mile project area. These assets are being managed through a new distribution management system (DMS), which communicates through a wireless communication network installed in the project area. Information from the project area is then collected at the substation and transmitted back to Snohomish PUDs headquarters via the 163 miles of fiber optic cable that was also installed system-wide as part of the SGIG project.

Snohomish PUD upgraded substations, deployed DA equipment, and installed supporting systems to reduce load and line losses on the system and improve service reliability for customers. The increased grid visibility realized through the addition of intelligent equipment (i.e., relays, line regulators, switches, and end of line meters) will support such reductions. The new DMS, DA equipment, and communications network allow the utility to monitor real-time sensor data and respond to changes in electricity demand and grid operating conditions. Snohomish PUD aims to reduce operations and maintenance costs over time and improve distribution system reliability.