IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - November/December 2016 - 58

✔ Television sets across the interconnection are not per-

fectly synchronized; an image that's only briefly dark
would result in only a slight load reduction for several
seconds across the interconnection.
✔ A sudden load change does not result in a sudden
frequency change; rather, a sudden load change (or
generation change) results in a sudden change in the
slope of frequency. It takes a few seconds of sustained load (or generation) change for frequency to
move significantly.

Load Displacement

For Further Reading

Load displacement, or deferred load, results in slower and
sustained movements to high and low frequencies. The
outstanding examples are high frequencies reached during the halftime show, apparently a period of high interest, and low frequencies reached after the end of the first
half, after the halftime show is over, and after the end of
the game.

B. Starling, K. Thomas, R. Orndorff, J. Ingleson, and E. Allen, "Effects of the super bowl on the Eastern interconnection," in Proc. Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conf., Atlanta, gA, 2013, pp. 1-7.
T. Xia, R. gardner, and Y. Liu, "FnET observations
on the impact of super bowl XLIII on the power grid frequency," in Proc. IEEE Power and Energy Society General
Meeting, 2009, pp. 1-5.
L. Chen, P. Markham, C.-F. Chen, and Y. Liu, "Analysis
of societal event impacts on the power system frequency using FnET measurements," in Proc. IEEE Power and Energy
Society General Meeting, 2011, pp. 1-8.
P. F. Ribeiro, J. J. A. L. Leitao, M. M. S. Lira, J. R. Macedo, A. L. Z. grandi, A. Testa, R. Langella, J. F. g. Cobben,
and n. R. Browne, "Harmonic distortion during the 2010
FIFA World Cup," in Proc. IEEE Power and Energy Society
General Meeting, 2011, pp. 1-8.
R. Orndorff, J. Ingleson, and D. Ellis, "Frequency triggers," in Proc. Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference,
Atlanta, gA, 2006, pp. 1-12.
J. W. Ingleson and E. Allen, "Tracking the Eastern Interconnection frequency governing characteristic," in Proc.
IEEE Power and Energy Society General Meeting, 2010,
pp. 1-6.
north American Electric Reliability Corporation. (2016,
May 16). Standard BAL-003-1-Frequency Response and
Frequency Bias Setting [Online]. Available: http://www.
nerc.com/_layouts/Print.aspx?standardnumber=BAL-003-1
&title=FrequencyResponseandFrequencyBiasSetting&
jurisdiction=united States

Are These Effects Likely to
Increase in the Future?
There are many factors involved in this situation that are
difficult to predict. We do know that the power system
parameter known as Beta has been decreasing. Beta is a
measure of the effect of load-generation balance changes
on system frequency. It is well documented that Beta has
been steadily decreasing over a period of years; that is, a
given change in load-generation balance results in a larger
immediate frequency change. Whether this trend continues
remains to be seen.
The display technologies in use have a big impact on
these effects. We have not attempted to investigate trends in
consumer display sales.
It is apparent that larger differences in viewing time
delays are being introduced. Assuming that this continues,
the sharp changes due to differences in brightness will have
their effect spread out, that is, the frequency changes will
not be so sharp.

Plans/Recommendations for Future Study
One possible investigation would be to develop objective
measures of the degree of frequency disruption and to apply
them to several years of data so as to determine the overall
trend. The different television displays could be monitored
in such a way as to better understand how characteristics of
the displayed image affect load.

Conclusions
When many television sets are tuned to the same program
(which regularly occurs during the Super Bowl), changes
in image brightness that persist for several seconds result
in sufficient change in aggregate television load to significantly affect system frequency. This phenomenon is the

58

cause of the rapid large frequency movements that have been
observed annually during the Super Bowl.
A second mechanism at work is displacement of load. The
load displacement mechanism has been understood since
Super Bowl frequency disturbances were first observed.
One of the authors described this using the 1999 Super Bowl
data. When many people remain watching the game, load is
deferred. This deferred load builds up gradually while interest is high. If, due to programming content, interest is less,
the deferred load is applied.

ieee power & energy magazine

Biographies
Eric H. Allen is with new Electricity Transmission Software Solutions, Inc., Sudbury, Massachusetts.
James Ingleson is with RLC Engineering, Hallowell,
Maine.
Robert Orndorff is with Dominion Virginia Power,
Richmond, Virginia.
Brian Starling is with Dominion Virginia Power, Richmond, Virginia.
M. Kyle Thomas is with Dominion Virginia Power, Richp&e
mond, Virginia.

november/december 2016


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