Industry Insights

Creating Safer Workplaces - How Oil & Gas Companies Can Mitigate Risk With Touchless™ Monitoring

February 19, 2024
Oil & gas facilities are difficult and sometimes dangerous places for workers. Hazardous conditions, including the presence of flammable gas, toxic chemicals, and heavy equipment mean that the health and safety of personnel must always be the priority when extracting, transporting, storing, or distributing petroleum products.

Temporary Substation Monitoring - A Flexible Approach to Security and Troubleshooting

February 13, 2024
Utility substations are often left unattended. Both remote and urban facilities typically operate with little or no direct supervision, especially outside of regular working hours. This makes them vulnerable to a range of security, environmental, and performance risks that could lead to damaged equipment, lost revenue, and outages.

5 Reasons the Utility Industry Needs Energy 4.0 Technologies

January 15, 2024
The utility industry is changing. Emerging trends are combining to put significant pressure on generation, transmission, and distribution infrastructure that was not designed or intended to meet current and future challenges. Utilities are responding by modernizing the grid and upgrading equipment, components, and technologies. Shareholder-owned electric utilities in the US are forecasted to spend $159.2 billion in 2023 on capital investments, while Canadian electric companies spent $25.3 billion in 2021.

What Is Energy 4.0? - The Technologies Powering the Future of Utilities

January 15, 2024
The electric power utility industry has reached an inflection point. Accelerating trends toward renewable energy, distributed grids, labour shortages, and more frequent and severe weather events are taking a toll on aging infrastructure that was not designed to meet the challenges of the future.

Optimizing Operations & Maintenance With Energy 4.0 Technologies

January 22, 2024
As the electric power industry becomes increasingly complex, utilities need greater visibility and control over generation, transmission, and distribution infrastructure. When it comes to implementing new technologies, utilities have two primary approaches. Traditionally, utilities have invested significant amounts of resources into on-premises and in-house IT infrastructure, communication networks, hardware, and software.

Keeping Substations Secure - How Utilities Benefit From an Asset Monitoring Service

February 20, 2024
Substations are critical to the reliable operation of the electric grid, providing the interface between transmission and distribution systems to deliver power to customers. Despite their importance, many of these sites are operated remotely and left unattended and undefended for long periods of time. Physical security measures, such as fences, barbed wire, and other barriers provide some level of protection, but substations remain vulnerable to intruders or other malicious actors who can gain access and cause damage without being detected.

The Role of Smart Grid Technologies - Transitioning Toward Increased Visibility and Control

November 27, 2023
The idea of the smart grid has been around for decades, but today, new technologies and solutions are transforming the way that electricity is generated, transmitted, and distributed. The global smart grid technology market is expected to grow from US$50 billion in 2022 to more than US$130 billion by 2028. But even as many utilities have made some level of investment in the smart grid, most are still flying blind when it comes to, analyzing, and utilizing the asset information that has been collected from both manual and automated inspections.

Putting Data to Use - How Utilities Can Make Stronger Investment Planning Decisions

November 13, 2023
The electric power industry is undergoing a substantial transformation. As renewable energy sources such as wind and solar are playing a larger role in the overall energy mix, aging infrastructure and a rise in the number of damaging weather events are pressuring utilities to modernize equipment, improve resiliency, and optimize performance.

Case Study: Verifying Switching Operations – Ozarks Electric Cooperative

October 23, 2023
Ozarks Electric Cooperative is a non-profit, member-owned cooperative that provides power to more than 86,000 customers in Northwest Arkansas and Northeast Oklahoma. The cooperative operates a 69kV loop that connects distribution stations. Motor-operated switches allow the loop to be reconfigured to connect to different sources, respond to load problems, or restore power after outages.

Monitoring Asset Health in Real-Time - Condition-Based Maintenance for Oil & Gas

February 22, 2024
The oil & gas industry faces unique and complex maintenance challenges. Facilities across the production process often operate in extremely difficult conditions that increase the likelihood of equipment degradation and failure.

The Impact of Electrification on Consumption and Utility Infrastructure

July 10, 2023
The way we use electricity is changing. Electrification of energy-intensive industries and applications, such as transportation, manufacturing, and raw materials processing, is vital to achieving decarbonization targets and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels.

The Complexity of Green Energy - How Utilities Can Maintain Sustainable Generating Technologies

July 27, 2023
Sustainability is top of mind for utilities. Renewable energy sources such as wind and solar have moved beyond the pilot stage and have proven to be viable alternatives to traditional fossil fuels. But as these new technologies are introduced to the electrical grid, they add complexity to an already vast and complex system. Unique maintenance requirements, additional equipment and assets, and the need for specialized skills all mean that utilities must consider the way green energy sources will affect their performance when deciding to invest.

Using the Latest Technologies to Detect and Mitigate Substation Threats

June 5, 2023
Systems With Intelligence recorded this webinar of which is one episode. The webinar is produced and recorded for the ear and they were designed to be either watched live or listened to via audio. If you are able to, we strongly recommend listening to/watching this episode which will include emotion and emphasis that isn’t obvious when reading a transcript. Our transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and humans. They may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before quoting in print.

Cyber Security - Mitigating the Risk of Cyber Attacks When Deploying Remote Monitoring Solutions

May 16, 2023
Utilities are more connected than ever before. What was once a largely analog industry has introduced new technologies that improve performance, reduce costs, and enhance operations. With increased connectivity, however, comes an increased risk of cyber attacks. And as threats become both more sophisticated and frequent each year, utilities must ensure that cyber security is carefully considered with every investment.

Five Things To Know Before Installing Thermal & Visual Sensors at Remote Substations

May 1, 2023
Utility-grade thermal & visual sensors offer numerous benefits over traditional approaches to substation monitoring. By allowing both the Operations & Maintenance team and Asset Management group to monitor the health and performance of several substations simultaneously and automatically, remote monitoring solutions reduce the cost of maintenance, improve reliability, and enhance worker safety.

Training & Development Requirements When Implementing Remote Substation Monitoring

April 3, 2023
Thermal & Visual Monitoring solutions offer utilities numerous benefits over traditional approaches to maintenance. Instead of costly truck rolls and manual inspections, utility-grade sensors allow the Operations & Maintenance (O&M) team to monitor the health of high-value substation assets remotely. By detecting sudden or prolonged changes in temperature, utilities can identify potential issues, diagnose the problem, and dispatch a crew to conduct the repair, all from a centralized location.

On-Time and on Budget - Planning Your Thermal & Visual Monitoring Systems Deployment

March 7, 2023
The traditional way of maintaining and repairing substation assets costs utilities time and money and does not make the most efficient use of scarce technical resources. Technicians must frequently visit remote locations, conduct physical inspections, record any issues, and return with the right equipment or parts to complete the repair.

How Utilities can Transition from Scheduled Maintenance to a Condition-Based Maintenance Strategy

March 6, 2023
Maintenance and repairs represent a significant cost for electrical utilities. A typical utility allocates around 15 percent of its total operations & maintenance (O&M) budget to planned or scheduled maintenance. While generally simple to manage, this approach can be highly inefficient. Minor issues can go unnoticed in between inspections leading to more serious failures, while crews can spend more time travelling between sites and inspecting equipment than actually conducting repairs.

Enhancing Climate Resiliency – 3 Ways Utilities Can Leverage Thermal and Visual Monitoring

February 20, 2023
Severe weather and environmental damage pose some of the most significant threats to North America’s electrical infrastructure. Major storms, heatwaves, wildfires, floods, and blizzards can all damage equipment, bring down transmission lines, and cause widespread and prolonged power outages.

Decarbonization – The Transition to Sustainable Power Generation

February 6, 2023
The way we generate, transmit, and use electricity is changing. Driven by government policies, technological advances, and falling prices, sustainable energy sources are increasingly being used to lower emissions without compromising on reliability or affordability.

Transitioning to Green Energy – How Utilities Can Leverage Thermal and Visual Monitoring

January 23, 2023
Around the world, both governments and utilities are striving to reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of the electricity sector through renewable and sustainable generation technologies. While these efforts have resulted in significant progress, there is still a substantial amount of work left to be done to fully decarbonize the grid while delivering affordable and reliable power to customers.

Transforming an Aging Grid – Where Should Utilities Focus Investments?

January 13, 2023
The North American electric grid is a remarkable achievement. Spreading across the entire continent, the complex mix of generation, transmission, and distribution infrastructure continues to deliver reliable power to customers in even the most remote locations.

Safety First – How Industrial Visual and Thermal Sensors Create a Safer Environment

December 12, 2022
Despite significant investments in safety, utility substations remain a hazardous environment. With high voltages and the potential for catastrophic failure, utilities must mitigate the risk of injury or death when operating in or around a substation.

Improving Operations and Reducing Costs – How Utilities Benefit from Automated Thermal Imaging

November 18, 2022
Electrical utilities across North America are making significant investments in transmission and distribution (T&D) infrastructure. Growing demand for electrical power, stronger regulation, and the proliferation of renewable energy sources are placing added strain on aging infrastructure. In response, the industry is moving to enhance reliability, increase capacity, and reduce the cost of maintenance and repairs.

Demonstrating Condition-Based Maintenance at the Southern Company Technical Conference Trade Show

October 4, 2022
Systems With Intelligence demonstrated how power utilities can transition to a Condition-Based Maintenance program at the 2022 Southern Company Technical Conference Trade Show last month.

Systems With Intelligence Joins Power Industry Leaders at Duke Energy TechX Conference

September 14, 2022
Systems With Intelligence showcased its line of advanced thermal and visual monitoring solutions at the 2022 Duke Energy Regulated and Renewable Energy TechX Conference last month.

Fears of the Cloud Have Been Greatly Exaggerated – The Advantages of Cloud Computing for Remote Substation Monitoring

September 2, 2022
Advanced thermal and visual sensors allow utilities to monitor the condition of remote substations from a centralized location. With continuous, real-time thermal and visual data, operations and maintenance teams can allocate resources more effectively, reduce the cost of maintenance and repairs, and improve reliability through condition-based maintenance programs.

Achieving a Positive ROI With Touchless™ Monitoring for Remote Substations

August 24, 2022
In most electrical utilities, a significant share of the overall operations and maintenance (O&M) budget is allocated to conducting inspections, maintenance, and repairs at substations. Keeping this critical infrastructure up and running is vital but challenging work, as utilities must ensure that high-value assets are operating correctly in remote locations that are difficult to access.

Reducing Operations and Maintenance Costs While Enhancing Substation Security

July 22, 2022
Utility substations play a vital role in transmitting and distributing power to thousands of customers across wide geographic regions. High-value assets, such as transformers, capacitor banks, bushings, CVT and load tap changers, to name only a few, must be regularly inspected, maintained, and repaired to mitigate the risk of severe failures and outages.

Mitigating the Risk of Substation Security with Touchless Monitoring Solutions

July 15, 2022
Critical infrastructure, such as power generating facilities, high voltage transmission lines, and utility substations present attractive targets for vandals and other malicious actors. Damage or disruption to these facilities can have wide-ranging consequences to customers, businesses, and society and cost utilities in repairs, fines, and other expenses.

Stress on the Power Grid – The Need for Reliability Through Power Line and Substation Monitoring

June 15, 2022
The North American power grid is under increasing stress. Aging infrastructure is being asked to do more with less as demand for power grows and reliable access to electricity impacts nearly all aspects of our daily lives.

Comparing Approaches to Remote Substation Monitoring – Why a Touchless™ Approach Is Better

May 6, 2022
In the US alone, more than 55,000 substations and 7 million miles of high voltage transmission and distribution lines transmit more than $400 billion of electricity each year.