Join T&D Worlds' technical writer, Gene Wolf, at the EPRI HVDC & FACTS Conference and see what he saw.
Home of their HVDC & FACTS Conference. I had attended the four previous conferences and this one promised to the best yet.
Our EPRI host, Dr Ram Adapa opened the conference by welcoming everyone. Ram explained this was the fifth HVDC & FACTS Conference and it had set a record for attendees.
Steven Powell, Trans Bay Cable, LLC's director welcomes everyone to the tour the San Francisco end of the project. Attendees saw Siemens' first voltage source HVDC converter station and learned a great deal about the deployment of technology to the field.
The tour proved so popular it had to be split into three groups of 20. Everyone was issued a hardhat and a tour guide to explain the 56 mile submarine 400MW, ±200kV project.
Behind that wall the power is converted to ac and feed into the switchyard for the power demands of San Francisco.
After a switchyard walk-about we were taken into the heart of the converter to see the electronics providing controls, protection, and conversion, but cameras had to be stowed in the off position.
Gene Wolf, Dennis Woodford, and Randy Wachal take advantage of some free time to catch up. Networking is a main part of the conference and ample time is given to the attendees to take part and meet new friends.
Dietmar Retzmann (Siemens), Le Tang (ABB), and Neil Kirby (Alstom) prepare their thoughts, at the presenters table, for their presentations.
Ben Mehraban, AEP was the session chair for the HVDC Project Update. He introduced Alstom Grid's, Neil Kirby who talked about HVDC projects around the world.
The highlight of the conference has always been the last day's panel session. Attendees are welcomed to ask the experts anything about projects, technology, and applications to the grid. It makes for a lively ending to the event.
Over 90 attendees took part in the conference, filling the EPRI conference room and taking every available seat. EPRI is going to have to expand the facilities for the next conference once the word gets out about this one.
Dr. John Chan, our executive sponsor started the conference off highlighting of all the HVDC and FACTS research projects underway at EPRI.
ABB's Dr. Le Tang explained state-of-the-art technologies. ABB's HVDC circuit breaker garnered a great deal of interest from the audience.
Attendees represented a diverse group ranging from new engineers to world recognized experts and everyone in between.
Siemens' Dr. Dietmar Retzmann brought some interesting ideas and insights about the proposed HVDC European grid also known as the HVDC Super Grid.
EPRI provided opportunities to meet and greet along with food - lots of really good food. We enjoyed coffee breaks, cookie breaks, and lunch breaks every day, not to mention continental breakfasts at the start of each session.
Join T&D Worlds' technical writer, Gene Wolf, at the 2013 EPRI HVDC & FACTS Conference and see what he saw.
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