T&D World Magazine, a trade publication for professionals in the utility industry, features PG&E’s Smart Grid Lab and the cutting edge research they perform on behalf of customers, as its cover story this month.
The work being done at the lab, along with the utility’s experience as an early adopter of the smart grid, has provided the utility’s customers with enhanced safety and reliability, more insight into energy use and improved customer service.
The story was written by David Bradley and Ryan Hanley, two PG&E managers who work at the lab. Click here to read the story.
PG&E’s San Ramon Technical Center serves as home to more than 120 engineers, scientists and technicians. They provide engineering and testing services for the utility’s power generation, electric operations, gas operations and customer care lines of business, and serve as the engineering services shop for the more than 2,500 incident investigations, dam inspections, failure analyses and equipment examinations that occur every year at PG&E. Several types of labs are on site to test, pull or break every type of wire, pipe or pole imaginable.
As part of PG&E’s ongoing implementation of the smart grid, the newest labs at the facility are dedicated to performing end-to-end testing of smart grid technology before it is launched in the field. To ensure value for the utility’s customers and a smooth technological rollout of any component, all equipment and control systems are rigorously tested before being piloted and deployed onto the grid to determine if they perform as advertised.
The facility also provides technical feedback to manufacturers to help them refine their products to ensure plug-and-play value for the marketplace. These test labs have proven invaluable to the utility in evaluating components and determining deployment strategies.
This facility has been instrumental in ensuring PG&E’s customers receive the safest, most reliable and affordable service possible.