Electric Distribution

Planning for design or upgrades in electric distribution systems requires extensive knowledge of the infrastructure and systems involved in the power grid. Our expertise in distribution planning analysis tools, substation and feeder design, voltage control, and grid modernization programs emerges from decades of firsthand experience working for power producers, utilities, commercial or industrial facilities, and municipalities where power distribution fulfills its mission. Our engineering teams coordinate capacity expansion and delivery projects to improve system reliability including downtown networks, power lines, and underground planning, which includes inspections and permitting before commissioning. EN geospatial and data analytics provides support that concisely identifies the structure and condition of all distribution equipment and lines to comply with NESC and serve as design support for planning and upgrades. Just as importantly, our automation teams provide tools to deliver enhanced reporting and documentation across distribution routes from rural to urban locations.

SERVICES

Distribution utility companies need to establish plans for meeting increased customer demands for improved reliability and resiliency which typically includes implementing advanced self-healing power restoration equipment using operations technology.  These communications based technologies can also enable such advancements as AMI, DER resource integration, electrification, and Microgrid integration as well as other customer choice and demand side programs for alternative energy.  The technological challenges are significant for power delivery companies with aging infrastructure and outdated and obsolete equipment that is currently managing the grid. EN engineering specializes in defining these issues and bringing comprehensive expertise to bear on each aspect of functionality from the points of distributed generation to the interconnection and transitioning of smart equipment to the grid. Grid modernization requires the “big picture” understanding and knowledge of the leading technologies necessary to implement a reliable, safe, flexible and cost effective power grid.  Your customers, regulatory environment and operational requirements are unique and EN Engineering can provide tailored solutions to navigate those complexities and help execute the actions necessary to transform the grid for your customers.

Network protection and grid engineering for downtown electrical supply depends on a plan to calculate loads and position infrastructure to handle system disturbances with network isolation where power is redirected without interruption of service. That consistency and reliability emerges through a series of preventative measures of equipment responding to system abnormalities. These begin with a data-driven assessment of existing equipment and infrastructure to determine real-time expected load conditions at every spot of the network. With that data picture in hand, EN engineers develop recommendations and set up utility grids linked with network protectors. These include breakers, relays, fuses and other means of sectionalizing and isolating parts of the grid to redirect power following isolation and prevent a larger collapse in service to the broader grid.

Transmission and Distribution (T&D) teams managing extensive networks often require support to stay ahead of maintenance programs and collaborate with key partners. The commitment to those agreements and associated responsibilities can overwhelm even the most competent staff and field service technicians. EN engineers provide direct leadership planning and support to give utilities and their telecommunication partners assurance that these assets get managed for safety, compliance, and optimal performance. With a nationwide presence structured around regional offices, our joint use program management teams offer expertise in requirements aligned with national, state, and local statutes. EN engineers are there when you need them, including remote communications technologies, to troubleshoot and deliver solutions in every circumstance. 

Overhead grid assets, including utility poles, lines for electrical and communications wiring, and supply space equipment, stand at perpetual risk from a wide range of harmful or threatening conditions. From dry heat and fire to soaking rains, sudden washouts, and devastating winds, the weather is a perpetual challenge in every region. Utility poles fall prey to wood rot for a host of reasons. Pole testing using Resistograph System technology is employed by EN Engineering to measure wood resistance and conditions accurately to detect and measure cracks, voids, cavities, and decay inside a utility pole that visual or traditional sound and bore examination misses. Resistograph technology eliminates the guesswork in detecting wood decay even from below ground level, including poles set in concrete and asphalt. EN engineers also inspect supply space equipment, line condition, and performance factors to provide complete documentation of every asset in use. That level of detail is why our partners trust EN Engineering for complete utility pole and line inspection.

Distribution overhead or underground line design involves factors as diverse in scale from regional climate trends to local soil compositions. Tapping into that level of expertise is why clients of EN Engineering turn to our nationwide company with its network of regional offices. We offer broad-based knowledge and a local familiarity gained from designing and implementing overhead and underground line design in every setting from the urban environments to backcountry wilds. We help you gain a deep understanding of overhead versus underground design options using data-driven financial and risk assessment to determine successful preventative and crisis management tactics such as fire hardening, storm response, and regional variables affecting line design. Our industry-tested line design teams dedicate their expertise to the long-term success of our clients/partners.

In an ideal world, power generation utilities maintain a reliable communications network to measure, manage, and document performance output in real-time. Yet aging infrastructure and outdated telecommunications equipment are often the reality, and it can require a significant investment in time and money to bring support technologies up to speed. Identifying critical opportunities for equipment and strategy upgrades is a vital first step. EN Engineering serves as a partner with utilities nationwide to bring practical and strategic insight to bear on upgrades including fiber design in utility telecommunications. EN is a leading source of automation technology for power generation and delivery markets, providing direction in infrastructure upgrades, software development including SCADA design, substation relays, and implementation across networks and enterprise systems.

The distribution grid is rapidly changing with the integration of innovative smarter technologies that continues to transform the grid of previous generations. Our team of industry experts offers decades of direct utility analysis and consulting experience spanning a wide range of services from the complexities of downtown secondary networks to grid modernization and the emergence of alternative energy resources such as DER, EV, BESS, and microgrids. Whether supporting power flow, voltage Arcflash, or protection analysis for interconnections, capacity or reliability studies, or complex ‘self-healing’ distribution automation scheme development, EN Engineering partners closely with our clients to optimize solutions at the planning and analysis phase to ensure the most robust and cost effective solutions are developed for our clients and their customers.

The future of electricity use in the transportation world is a flexibly-managed grid where energy spreads and flows. That means the electrical grid is taking on an entirely new business model that functions as a massive exchange system. This new model is data-driven and multiple-sourced and is preparing to replace the static, traditional distribution network pushing power to users for generations. This modernization trend aligns with emerging energy demands just as the transportation industry becomes a source of use and exchange in the power grid. Increasing demand presents opportunities and challenges for everyone connected to the network or operating microgrids. That includes energy developers, utilities, transportation managers, municipalities, and emerging technology providers such as wind, solar, and battery storage providers. To navigate this new universe, EN Engineering offers vital data capabilities to drive analysis for planning and design, grid modification and modernization, and syncing emerging technology with the traditional grid. While no one can predict the future, the economics of the energy industry eventually point to a future where electricity fuels the transportation industry.

Power distribution facilities looking to improve operational performance and effectiveness are increasingly turning to insights provided by data analytics to improve productivity, efficiency, and safety. EN begins the process by identifying the real-time function of critical assets and how effectively they connect. These assessments include geospatial engineering measurements to identify, measure, and analyze all assets’ locations and real-time conditions. Once this picture develops, data is available from the functionality of specific machines to measure the performance of entire enterprise systems and the assets they manage. Data maturity provides the ability to troubleshoot in real time or generate predictive models useful in management decisions. These analytics provide the intelligence necessary to map and perform upgrades either in stages or comprehensively, including all-new systems. EN’s commitment to data democratization means your organization owns everything generated in these processes. Our role is to help you set up and leverage these capabilities to achieve superior results now and in the future.

Power utilities face challenges ranging from resource limitations of managing large infrastructure programs to high demand for unique experiences to help support technical projects and complex program implementation. Proper project planning demands more precise cost and schedule development and controls for system upgrades, installations, and commissioning.  More complex work scopes in Grid Modernization program management include aspects of real time communication, metering, and controls integrating equipment into advanced utility distribution management systems.  More detailed documentation is necessary for infrastructure change control, collaboration with the team following a detailed work break down structure to determine critical paths that ensure interrelated complexities are known and managed through permitting and implementation.  These processes often require on-site and managerial collaboration within the Project Management Office and strong communication plans with the client and stakeholders to plan and achieve the best results. In response to these needs, EN engineers provide the capability, depth of knowledge, and progressive industry insights to guide power utilities through every step and scale of operational improvement, safety, and performance. Best practices are implemented throughout the program management process to provide unmatched excellence from project initiation to close out.

Routing, siting, and permitting power delivery projects has evolved into a data-driven process to position assets for optimal safety, maximized efficiency, and value. Routing line assets and siting substations benefit from data gathered through tools such as GIS data analytics.  Furthermore, we have depth of experience navigating requirements from the Department of Transportation, railroad, waterway as well as overcoming environmental challenges.  We identify potential conflicts early in the process and have a depth of experience coordinating with the agencies and organizations to garner buy-in during the conceptual phases of a project. Our ability to identify challenging easement conflicts and engage in critical customer communication in siting phases of projects can also be a way to save the utility many heartaches and later schedule delays.  These insights enable power delivery projects to define viable prospective paths, calculate routing impacts, and target the optimum connection points that conform best to the targeted schedule.  EN Engineering brings this level of expertise to life from concept to completion, guiding developers or existing facility networks through the physical and financial processes of determining the best approach to implement their assets. EN also leads client partners through the regulatory and permitting processes required for traditional utilities, emerging technologies, owner engineers, and industrial or private customers.

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