The world is rapidly entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution. During the First, humanity managed to mechanize production with the help of water and steam energy, during the Second – we began to use electricity to create mass production. In the Third, we relied on electronics and information technology to automate production. Today we are moving smoothly into the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which merges all technologies – consumption is significantly higher and faster, production seeks to meet its needs, and the scope of change is global and has a systematic impact on each area.
Electricity supply, its stability, and reliability, is proving to be the key to the transition to the new technological era. For this to happen, electricity distribution companies as well as large industrial companies face the challenge of meeting the new demands of the world.
Monitoring of the electrical infrastructure so far
Electricity distribution companies
The Second Industrial Revolution has been the period between the second half of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. In it, electricity began to be used to power conveyor lines and spread mass production. This necessitates the construction of power plants and the creation of electricity distribution companies to supply consumers, build the necessary infrastructure, and provide monitoring. Keeping the lights on and the power distribution grid running are critical to maintaining our modern way of life. Everything depends on the power grid – from our food and water supply, to the factories, networks, security systems, and banking industries that we all rely on every day to keep our world on track. No aspect of our modern societies can function without power.
Over the years, this has proved to be an increasingly complex task due to the growing consumption and needs of electricity by consumers – industrial enterprises or individuals.
Challenges and difficulties for Electricity distribution companies
Over the years, Electricity distribution companies have faced the increasingly complex task of carrying out timely and preventive monitoring of their aging infrastructure. Meanwhile there is an ever-increasing demand for low-cost energy. All this leads to high costs of repairing damaged or destroyed facilities. To monitor their infrastructure (substations, distribution transformers), a maintenance plan is made. The substation is stopped and a team is sent to the field to inspect and diagnose the serviceability of all equipment in it. During such an inspection, several problems can be identified, such as low oil, broken contact, faulty switch, etc. Unauthorized intrusion into the substation and stolen wires are often found. This leads to voltage distribution through fewer wires, which increases the risk of overheating and burning of the entire substation. In such cases, the restoration of the facility represents a serious cost for the electricity distribution company, and in most cases, the damage (fire) occurs before a problem is identified at the substation.
The prevention of problems in the electrical power supply system, as well as the adoption of modern maintenance practices, is vital for electrical sector companies in their search for continuous improvement of performance and power supply quality indexes.
Needs for Electricity distribution companies
Defining these critical points in the process of monitoring its facilities, one of the largest electricity distribution companies in the country turned to ADD Bulgaria to provide them with a solution for remote and timely diagnosis of the condition of their facilities.
When we talk about energy monitoring for industrial enterprises, we must note that energy supply is an extremely important factor in this sector. The productions cannot afford to stop, as this would lead to huge losses. At the same time, production lines and all other automation in the manufacturing process generate huge electricity consumption. For this reason, power supply and its monitoring must be carried out accurately and responsibly.
Challenges and difficulties for industrial enterprises
Often this type of enterprise is located on huge areas, different buildings, and even in different cities. Energy consumption is huge, which means that the electricity distribution infrastructure must be maintained in good condition and monitored efficiently on a daily basis. It often happens that climate conditions affect the set goals and increase the consumption of electricity.
Needs of industrial enterprises
Industrial enterprises need a system for monitoring energy consumption in order to be able to quickly locate faults and damages and eliminate them without affecting the production process. The key is obtaining accurate statistics, preventing losses from technical malfunctions, and reducing energy consumption.
A solution from ADD Bulgaria and ARISTA EIM
The monitoring system is specially designed to meet the real maintenance needs of electrical equipment. The functions of the system are developed based on feedback from electricity distribution companies and industrial enterprises.
ARISTA EIM provides comprehensive real-time information on the operation of the monitored site and the equipment included in it. The system measures the electrical parameters (voltage, current, power, consumption), reads signals from various digital sensors (for smoke, humidity, temperature, buttons for door positions, etc.), monitors the presence of voltage at the control points of the circuit and takes into account the states of the infrastructure elements.
The ARISTA EIM system quickly locates and identifies emergency conditions, detects parameter deviations, and attempts for manipulation of the infrastructure. Helps to make informed decisions, which optimizes processes and maintenance costs.
The system allows digitalization and visualization of the states and parameters of the electrical circuit of the infrastructure through a web interface and allows integration with other systems.
The ultimate objective is to monitor the electrical parameters continuously and hence to guard the burning of distribution transformer or power transformer due to the constraints such as overload, over temperature and input high voltage.
Only with the analysis of information collected in real time from the equipment is it possible to establish maintenance based on real conditions and not on time intervals. This analysis makes it possible to extend the maintenance cycle and minimize related costs.
Advantages of ARISTA EIM
Based on the listed functionalities of the system, several advantages can be defined for both Electricity distribution companies and industrial enterprises:
- Increasing the efficiency of the processes for maintenance of the facilities – switchboards and substations;
- Damage prevention by providing real-time information;
- Improving the quality and reliability of equipment and installations;
- Reduction of maintenance costs;
- Reducing the time for analysis and problem solving;
- Prevention of losses from unauthorized manipulations;
- Upgrade with new system functions;
- Fast return on investment;
- Notification only in the presence of critical information.
How does the ARISTA EIM system work?
ARISTA EIM consists of PH (Periphery hub) which connect to the sensors and MMD (Monitoring Management Device) devices that transfer the received information to the ARISTA CMS software, where the parameters and states are visualized and analyzed.
PH is a device for connection to digital sensors for monitoring parameters and states. Through Arista PH, the system Arista EIM is able to monitor the status of large number of control points from the infrastructure. The device connects to MMD and other PH devices and the digital sensors are connected to the peripheral hub Arista PH for monitoring the limit exceeding values of parameters of the equipment and the cable system in the substations and parameters of the working environment.
The MMD device measures the electrical parameters, detects the presence of potentials (voltage) at the control points, and reads signals from digital sensors in the infrastructure of the electrical panels. MMD builds a VPN tunnel to connect to the ARISTA CMS software center via GPRS/3G/4G or LAN/Wi-Fi communication for two-way and continuous data and command exchange.
The MMD device performs full monitoring of the state of the power supply, protection, and executive elements in the infrastructure of the electrical switchboards, through built-in modules for monitoring and measuring electrical parameters. It has a built-in relay, through which processes are performed to turn on or off the load, etc., can be controlled remotely, depending on the needs and pre-defined by the customer requirements.
Monitoring system software – ARISTA CMS
In ARISTA CMS, templates for operating conditions of each monitored substation can be defined, according to its infrastructure. The templates are the basis for visualization and analysis of the data received from the MMD device in the substation. When a discrepancy is found in the status or value of a parameter, ARISTA CMS immediately generates an event notification in the application interface and sends an email with the technical details of the event to an authorized group of users.
Benefits of the ARISTA monitoring system
The system for monitoring the health condition of electrical infrastructure in substations and switchboards by ADD Bulgaria, called ARISTA EIM, provides an opportunity for the electricity distribution companies and industrial companies to meet the requirements of the modern world for the growing consumption of energy resources, and managing the ever enlarging and ever more complex grid. Thanks to the monitoring system, faults can be quickly and easily diagnosed and remedied promptly, without interrupting the power supply or destroying expensive infrastructure, thus employing the so-called predictive maintenance practice. Electricity distribution companies can more easily and efficiently service their electrical assets, while industrial enterprises can optimize their energy consumption and their maintenance process.