In the News | Alpha 3 Supports Utility Substation Reliability Program Compliance

Supporting Utility Substation Reliability
Feb 01, 2023

The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) publishes standards under an accredited and industry-driven process to elevate and maintain the reliability of the North American bulk power system. The FAC family of standards includes requirements for Facilities Design, Connections, and Maintenance, and within that family, the FAC-008 standard ensures that facility ratings used in the planning and operation of the Bulk Electric System (BES) are determined based on technically sound principles, essential for the determination of System Operating Limits. In fact, FAC-008 is one of the most data-intensive standards in the NERC regulatory framework.

Alpha 3 personnel have been working to assist utilities in updating and maintaining the documentation required for the determination of facility ratings for their substations for compliance with the FAC-008 standard. The documentation that Alpha 3 supports typically consists of design and construction information such as design criteria, equipment ratings, drawings, commissioning and performance test results, and historical performance records. Our work has included review of substation elementary, physical, and wiring drawings and visits to the facilities to photograph installations for consistency or document any inconsistency between the documentation and the installed equipment so that the discrepancy can be corrected.

Properly documenting the information used as a basis for a substation’s rating ensures that the key nodes in our electric power grid can reliably carry power. It further ensures that events that disrupt the power supply can be properly investigated for determination of the root cause. Compliance with these requirements is a critical component of maintaining a reliable power supply, and Alpha 3 is proud of our employees’ skills and experience in ensuring that the requirements are met.