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USTDA Supports Adoption of Smart Grid Technologies by Colombian Transmission Grid Operator

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

(USTDA)  Project Improves Power Quality and Liability in the Region

BOGOTÁ, COLOMBIA – Today, USTDA awarded a grant to XM Compañía de Expertos en Mercados S.A. E.S.P. (XM Company of Experts in Markets or “XM”) in support of its efforts to develop an Intelligent Supervision and Advanced Control System (iSAAC) for the Colombian transmission grid. XM is the system operator and market administrator of the Colombian power grid and specializes in the management of real-time systems in the power, transport and finance sectors.

The $463,944 grant was signed in Bogotá by USTDA Director Leocadia I. Zak and on behalf of XM by its General Manager, Luis Camargo, and was witnessed by U.S. Ambassador P. Michael McKinley and Juliana Martinez, Advisor to the Colombia Vice Minister of Energy.

The technical assistance will support XM to refine its design of an advanced Wide Area Measurement System (WAMS) for the Colombian power grid and define a road map for its implementation. The WAMS will utilize synchronized phasor measurement units (PMUs) and associated hardware and software at the control center and at substations to improve the ability to monitor and control the national electrical grid in Colombia. By developing advanced applications and methodologies, the iSAAC project also seeks to enable transmission system information to be relayed faster and more reliably and to automate and accelerate responses to system anomalies.

"We are pleased to partner with XM on this important project that will improve power quality and reliability in Colombia," USTDA Director Leocadia I. Zak stated.

"U.S. companies are market leaders in grid automation and wide area monitoring solutions and technologies. This project is an excellent example of the U.S. partnering with Colombia for mutual benefit and it follows the Smart Grid reverse trade mission."

The grant agreement signed today follows a smart grid reverse trade mission that USTDA arranged for a delegation of Colombian officials in October 2012, in which the Vice Minister for Energy participated along with officials from the Energy and Gas Regulatory Commission, XM and several Colombian utilities.

XM has identified Quanta Technology, LLC (Raleigh, NC) as the U.S. contractor for the technical assistance. Quanta is a recognized leader in providing technical services to energy utilities and has had an integral role in the North American SynchroPhasor Initiative, known as NASPI.