Reliable, secure transmission of power to customers is a major concern to all utilities. In a dynamic industry with constant change, utilities must update their systems to keep pace with new technology. The challenge is greater when multiple locations must be managed at the same time.
Black & Veatch took on that challenge for a large northeastern United States utility serving more than 4 million customers. With service to that many households at stake, a vital aspect of the project was to minimize the risk to normal operations.
This initiative focused on replacing legacy and non-standard remote terminal units (RTUs) with new RTU technology. The goal was to replace around 250 RTUs across seven operating companies and three states. The utility wanted a partner with knowledge of both the energy business and communications systems. As leaders in both categories, Black & Veatch was able to provide a turnkey solution.
As an independent integrator, Black & Veatch also was able to deliver greater value in dealing with the manufacturers of RTU equipment. This strategy allowed the client a broad view of the vendor offerings. It also meant that the partners were able to negotiate for the most competitive equipment prices.
Over the course of the complex project, Black & Veatch worked with multiple groups in the client’s organization. The IT group helped to ensure that the project stayed on track in reaching its goals. They gathered input from substation staff on scheduling and understanding specific site needs. The client’s operations center helped with planning installations and testing. This cohesive teamwork resulted in the smooth transition of service.