R.E. Warner is assisting a major electric utility with a verification effort to satisfy requirements of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) Reliability Standard FAC-008.
During a recent audit of the utility's Bulk Electric Systems (BES) compliance with the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) Reliability Standard FAC-008, it was discovered some equipment that was currently modeled in in the utility's proprietary software for current facility rating documentation was not what was currently in service in the field. As a transmission owner, to satisfy the North American Reliability Standard FAC-008 the utility is required to have documented methodology for determining facility ratings of its solely and jointly owned BES facilities. In doing so, the utility must have documented rating methodology and must provide facility ratings and limiting components to ensure facility ratings used in the reliable planning and operation of their BES are technically sound.
Once the equipment used in the modeling software was updated to reflect the equipment actually in the field, a decrease in the current Facility Ratings was discovered. Anticipating the utility's self-reporting to ReliabilityFirst (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) and considering previous responses to other utilities for similar issues, the utility's Transmission Planning and Protection group initiated a FAC-008 Verification Program as part of a mitigation plan to verify its transmission system's compliance with NERC standard FAC-008 Facility Ratings.
With a total of 580 breakered BES substations for the utility's FAC-008 (100kV+) facilities, the utility has determined using consultants will be the quickest way to ensure completion of the inspections within an anticipated two-year timeframe.
With our technical knowledge of its Facility Ratings documenting program and electrical engineering knowledge and experience, we were selected to assist with this effort. Our work includes performing verification of equipment located within its current BES facilities and verifying facility ratings for 761 regional transmission substations. Verification consists of review and analysis of engineering prints, asset databases, and field assets for accuracy and consistency of ratings.