IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - 3

Since the 1960s, HVdc transmission has been in practice worldwide
as an effective means for bulk pointto-point transmission over electricity
over long distances. In the late 1970s,
the application of solid-state devices
for HVac-to-HVdc conversion at both
ends for using thyristor devices for
voltage levels of nearly 600 kV was
the most impressive demonstration
of power-conversion technology on
the planet. A field trip I took as an
electrical engineering student to the
source of HVdc transmission
between Utah and California-the
Intermountain Power Plant in Delta,
Utah-was what introduced me to
the field of power electronics and
convinced me that this was what I
wanted to do. Although the main
focus of this issue is on low-voltage
(LV) dc, the relevance of both this trip
down memory lane and the opportunity to be in awe of ABB's recent
achievements is to point out that the
most significant advances in dc
transmission and distribution have
occurred in systems in which perhaps the challenges are greatest-
at  voltage levels in the hundreds
of thousands!
So, the question to ask is whether
the advances in HVdc are foreshadowing a "dc revolution" in the area of LV
distribution that will bring the dc distribution closer to the daily lives of everyday people. The "Viewpoint" column
from Ewan Pritchard and Daniel C.
Gregory of North Carolina State University illustrates that we may very well be
heading in this direction by highlighting several technological trends that
are driving a shift toward dc.
It is my hope that this issue of
IEEE Electrification Magazine will give
readers a compelling opportunity to
look at where we are today in the dc
versus ac discussion. Many of the
authors have chosen to bring us into
the present by revisiting the past
"war of the currents" between Edison and Tesla at the beginning of the
20th century to show that, after a
hundred years of ac infrastructure,

there is good reason to revisit distributed energy delivery using dc.
These reasons run the gamut from
the role of dc in enabling electrification of rural homes in India (where
both the need and opportunity are
great), to LVdc distribution in green
buildings and dc-enabled smart
homes, to a plausible evolution from
managed dc systems like universal
serial bus (USB) and power over
Ethernet, to nanogrids that have
enabled increased plug and play of
native dc electronic loads. Although
many concepts still seem futuristic,
"Solar-dc Microgrid for Indian
Homes" by Ashok Jhunjhunwala,
Aditya Lolla, and Prabhjot Kaur demonstrates that local dc distribution of
solar power is happening today,
transforming and lifting individuals,

families, and communities. This
issue also illuminates architectures,
the integration of systems using
commercially available hardware,
lessons learned from highly survivable shipboard medium-voltage dc
systems that are self-healing, and, of
course, new developments in dc protective devices. All of these activities
and achievements are paving the
way toward more widespread integration of dc microgrid concepts at
all levels of electrical power delivery
with its attendant benefits. I hope
you enjoy this issue of IEEE Electrification Magazine, that you will find
it educational, and that, perhaps, it
will provoke new ideas, innovations,
and solutions.

IEEE Elec trific ation Magazine / j une 2 0 1 6

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016

IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - Cover1
IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - Cover2
IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - 1
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IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - Cover3
IEEE Electrification Magazine - June 2016 - Cover4
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