The operation of power transmission networks is greatly dependent on complex monitoring, diagnosis and supervisory control systems. SCADA/DMS (supervisory control and data acquisition / distribution management systems) are large-scale, multi-tier, embedded, information processing systems. The large geographical span of power transmission networks and their underlying communication systems, together with variable levels of decision decentralisation and the diversity of the operational problems, require the ability for large-scale, real-time, processing by the software/hardware support architectures at each control centre.
Distribution automation systems are designed to remotely operate and coordinate the use of all distribution system components in real time. They are fully integrated systems that include all of the utility's functional data flow and control involving the distribution system. For several years, much has been done to provide field equipment and systems for remote data acquisition and control. However, little has been achieved, from the viewpoint of the control centre's decision-support and management systems, to provide access to field functionality.
The goals of the DMS 2000 action are to define the context and framework required to support the creation of a long-term development area and the design of new projects and products. The work involved relies on the study and synthesis of past related work in the areas of systems science, computer science, artificial intelligence, decision theory and organisation theory, together with the critical analysis of different "learning-by-doing" and industrial implementations and relevant results from previous ESPRIT projects. The main objective is to project conclusions into the process engineering and power system DMS domains.
Engineering design activities in the Action will integrate the concepts of distributed problem-solving, multi-agent systems and openness, with application to the decision support system of new DMS architectures, under the global framework of decision-oriented integrated tools and open architecture for control systems.
Several guidelines that characterise the desired DMS have been proposed, aiming at the enrichment of its decision-support system and providing more effective assistance to operators. Among the areas to be considered are:
- intelligent monitoring
- fault detection and guidance to field personnel
- faster and better state estimation, on-line security analysis and transient stability analysis using a "system evolution tracking" rather than "system state sampling" approach
- improved database structure and contents (object-oriented paradigm, event-driven state transition handling, real-time data, extra information for strategic and tactical planning and situation analysis, inter-department and inter-utility data exchange
- intelligent interfaces
- conceptual and physical distribution of the different problem-solving agents.