IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - 71

figure 4. A demolished substation in Minamisanriku,
Japan, after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The
poles in the background were installed as part of the restoration process. (Source: A. Kwasinski.)
figure 6. Damaged buried cables in Christchurch, New
Zealand, after the February 2011 earthquake. (Source:
A. Kwasinski.)

figure 5. A pole and transformers in Rikuzentakata,
destroyed by the tsunami that affected Japan in March
2011. (Source: A. Kwasinski.)

advantage of integrating local sources is a reduction in the consumption of fossil fuels.
similar outcomes were observed in Japan after the 2011
earthquake, where the most significant damage was observed
in many coastal towns where the massive tsunami demolished
all infrastructures (see Figures 4 and 5); still, long outages also
extended inland, where the damage to the power grid was relatively minor.
the series of earthquakes in Christchurch, new Zealand,
particularly in February 2011, presented a similar performance of the power grid-i.e., outages mostly originated in
failures at the transmission and distribution levels. however,
since most of the power lines in Christchurch are buried (as
opposed to mostly overhead lines in Chile and Japan), the
failure modes were different, mostly caused by severe soil
liquefaction and extreme ground shaking affecting the buried
cables and transformers (see Figures 6 and 7).

Hurricanes Ike, Gustav, Katrina,
and Superstorm Sandy
in the past decade there have been several hurricanes in which
the inherent fragility of electric power grids caused by centralized power generation, control architectures, and long power
may/june 2014

figure 7. A "sinking" substation as a result of extreme
soil liquefaction in Christchurch, New Zealand. (Source:
A. Kwasinski.)

delivery paths is exemplified. in 2005, hurricane Katrina
caused more than 2.7 million outages in the u.s. Gulf Coast
area, some of which lasted several weeks. three years later,
hurricane Gustav caused more than 1.1 million power outages in approximately the same region affected by Katrina. a
month and a half after hurricane Gustav, in mid-september
2008, hurricane ike caused even more outages than Katrina
or Gustav. hurricane ike initiated more than 3 million outages
in the western u.s. Gulf Coast states and more than 1.5 million outages in the eastern half of the united states, including
more than 1 million in ohio (located 1,000 km north of the
Gulf Coast). in 2011, hurricane irene caused almost 6 million
electric outages in the northeastern u.s. coast. Despite these
extensive power outages, excluding a relatively narrow area
along the coast where the hurricane storm surge caused extensive damage, most of the areas affected by power outages had
fewer than 1% of the grid infrastructure components showing
damage-e.g., one in 100 poles were damaged, usually as a
result of intense winds (see Figure 8).
ieee power & energy magazine

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014

IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - Cover1
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IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2014 - Cover3
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