LBNL conducts research and provides technical assistance to OE on key aspects of electricity transmission.
Interconnection-wide Transmission Planning Support
In an era of competitive electricity markets, merchant generation, long-distance transport of electricity from renewable sources, and policies that affect the planning and use of bulk power systems, transmission planning is taking on an important regional dimension. LBNL provides technical support to U.S. DOE on many aspects of regional transmission planning. This includes monitoring the progress of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act-funded interconnection-wide transmission planning and related activities, and preparing technical analyses.
Transmission Usage and Congestion
Congestion of the electricity transmission system impedes delivery of reliable power to consumers. LBNL supports U.S. DOE with research on congestion metrics, historical congestion, and systematic methods of collecting information on future congestion. LBNL also provides technical support to U.S. DOE for preparation of congressionally mandated, triennial congestion assessments, including the 2006, 2009, and 2012 U.S. DOE National Electricity Transmission Congestion Studies.
Bulk Power Reliability Data and Trends
Good data on bulk power system performance are essential for analyzing and tracking the reliability impacts of policies, investments, and operating practices. LBNL is conducting research on metrics of bulk power reliability as well as means for consistently and comprehensively collecting reliability data. LBNL coordinates these efforts with – and provides support to – the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation.
Investigations of major power blackouts require months of technical work and coordination. LBNL provided technical support to the U.S. DOE-appointed team investigating power outages that took place during the summer of 1999 and participated in the U.S.-Canada investigation of the 2003 Northeast blackout.