Saturday, April 20, 2024

BL&P says power restoration process not seamless

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Barbados Light & Power says while electricity been has been fully restored across the island following Thursday’s seven-hour blackout, it admits the process has not been as seamless for some customers.

In a release yesterday, director of operations Johann Greaves said some of the challenges were linked to the increased number of renewable energy (RE) systems.

“During the restoration process, one of the biggest challenges we encountered was grid instability, which was caused by the number of renewable energy (RE) systems that were automatically reconnecting to the grid as we restored power to various areas. The variability of the RE systems connected was compounded by the heavy clouds that were passing over some parts of the island at the time. Consequently, some customers may have experienced intermittent outages in the early stages of restoration,” Greaves explained.

He said workers experienced an issue at the company’s Seawell Generating Station which resulted in a delay in restoring those units.

“Yesterday (Thursday), our teams received many queries regarding the duration of the restoration process. It’s important to understand that power restoration is a meticulous and structured procedure even more so now with the high level of RE sources which Light & Power does not have control of.

“Generation capacity is gradually brought online to prevent system overload while trying to maintain system stability. Every restoration is unique and based on the nature of each incident and challenges experienced during restoration will result in varying restoration times. Hence, in these events, offering precise timelines for completing restoration can be challenging,” Greaves said.

BL& P said that around 11:30 a.m., the disruption was triggered by a fault in the 24KV transmission line connecting the St Thomas and Spring Garden substations. It added that while protection systems are designed to isolate the fault and limit impact to the wider network, they experienced a cascading system failure.

Barbados Light & Power says while electricity been has been fully restored across the island following Thursday’s seven-hour blackout, it admits the process has not been as seamless for some customers.

In a release yesterday, director of operations Johann Greaves said some of the challenges were linked to the increased number of renewable energy (RE) systems.

“During the restoration process, one of the biggest challenges we encountered was grid instability, which was caused by the number of renewable energy (RE) systems that were automatically reconnecting to the grid as we restored power to various areas. The variability of the RE systems connected was compounded by the heavy clouds that were passing over some parts of the island at the time. Consequently, some customers may have experienced intermittent outages in the early stages of restoration,” Greaves explained.

He said workers experienced an issue at the company’s Seawell Generating Station which resulted in a delay in restoring those units.

“Yesterday (Thursday), our teams received many queries regarding the duration of the restoration process. It’s important to understand that power restoration is a meticulous and structured procedure even more so now with the high level of RE sources which Light & Power does not have control of.

“Generation capacity is gradually brought online to prevent system overload while trying to maintain system stability. Every restoration is unique and based on the nature of each incident and challenges experienced during restoration will result in varying restoration times. Hence, in these events, offering precise timelines for completing restoration can be challenging,” Greaves said.

BL& P said that around 11:30 a.m., the disruption was triggered by a fault in the 24KV transmission line connecting the St Thomas and Spring Garden substations. It added that while protection systems are designed to isolate the fault and limit impact to the wider network, they experienced a cascading system failure.(CM/TG)

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