IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - 8

letters to the editor

share your thoughts
send comments to molken@ieee.org

R

ReadeRs aRe encouRaged to
share their views on issues affecting
the electric power engineering profession. send your letters to Mel olken,
editor in chief, molken@ieee.org. Letters may be edited for publication.

Longer Restoration Times?
the January/February issue contains a
number of very interesting articles on
blackout and restoration, but there was
one topic of discussion that I did not find:
as one compares the "great blackouts" of
1965, 1977, and 2003, the restoration time
has substantially increased each time.
the 1965 event darkened new York
city at about 5:15 p.m. according to a
Wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.
org/wiki/northeast_blackout_of_1965),
power was restored to most of new York
by midnight, making the outage time in
new York city about seven hours.
the 1977 event darkened new York
city at 9:27 p.m. Power was restored to
most of the city by 10:30 the following
evening, making the outage approximately
25 hours (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
new_York_city_blackout_of_1977).
In the 2003 event, Manhattan lost
power about 4:15 pm (by personal observation) and service was not fully restored
until 10:30 p.m. the next day (IEEE
Power & Energy Magazine, January/
February 2014, p. 27) the outage time
was therefore about 30 hours.
the time when the blackout "started"
is fairly well defined; we can quibble
Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/MPE.2014.2313799
Date of publication: 17 June 2014

8

ieee power & energy magazine

As one
compares
the "great
blackouts" of
1965, 1977,
and 2003, the
restoration
time has
substantially
increased
each time.

about when restoration is "complete." But
those quibbles are not
important. after each of
these events, committees and commissions
were formed, studies
were made, reports
were issued, procedures
were written, and communications circuits
and computer systems
were installed. What do
we have to show for it?
a trend that is clear, and
in the wrong direction!
this would be worth
some further discussion in IEEE Power &
Energy Magazine.
-Andrew L. Jones, P.E.

Guest Editor's Response
thank you for your letter and interesting observations regarding the duration of system restoration times.
the causes and system restoration
challenges of the blackouts and restoration of new York city in 1965, 1977,
and 2003 were fundamentally different. although the 1965 blackout began
with the opening of transmission lines
in ontario, electrically near the new
York system at niagara, the eventual
effect on new York city was the loss of
all transmission paths from the north.
a path from the west, however, was
available to assist system restoration
efforts. Most cables were self-cooled
at that time and could be more rapidly

restored than forced
cooled cables. In 1977,
damage to transmission and generation
equipment and several
cables had oil pressure issues associated with the loss of
forced oil circulation.
after the extensive
2003 blackout, much
of the restoration of
the new York system
was achieved without
the benefit of outside
system support. a
comparison of blackouts and restoration
times is difficult due
to the different nature
of the root cause of the events and the
evolving nature of the system.
In many ways, restoration has become increasing complex due to industry
restructuring and other regulatory requirements. In general, the implementation of wholesale electric markets
has greatly improved the efficiency
and reliability of electric system operation. system restoration, however, is
now viewed as an ancillary service as
opposed to the old command and control
electric utility structure, which may
have allowed for more operational
flexibility. additional barriers now
exist to restoration units, such as the
need for meeting both cybersecurity

(continued on p. 12)
july/august 2014


http://www.en.wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014

IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover1
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover2
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - 1
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IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover3
IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - July/August 2014 - Cover4
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