11. Jul 2022

What BKK Nett has learned from installing monitors at 317 substations

BKK Nett has now installed substation monitoring from SafeBase at 317 substations. This means they are on target with the first phase of a rollout that will eventually ensure that metrics from several thousand substations all arrive in the same place.

The aim of putting in place more sophisticated monitoring of the substations is partly to meet the regulatory requirements for ground fault monitoring. Now that BKK Nett collects data from the substations, there are also major opportunities to make use of more measurement parameters than just ground faults.

“We can now see, among other things, ground faults, voltage, transformer loads and monitoring of surge protection and zero-point protection in the IT network in the same system. For us, it is a big step towards operating in such a way that we are prepared for the challenges that arise before they occur,” says Eva Aarbakke Rognsvåg, project manager at BKK.

Right: BKK’s Jan Tore Birkeland is pleased to have access to data from the entire grid – as well as individual substations – in real time on his tablet. Left: Installer at BKK Baard Arve Sætre and electrician Kjetil Austrheim from Bravida, are working on the rollout.

She reveals that they have also tested monitoring of other variables, such as door sensors and room temperature.

“In the past, we had more basic monitoring, where we did not get any graphs, times or sizes. In SafeMon, you can navigate to a map with an overview of all alarms and the number of ground faults. The list of transformer loads shows the extent to which they are overloaded, and we can thereby prioritize the most important things first.”

From simulation to real-time

“SafeMon is a very good tool for the engineers. Previously, we had to simulate the load when new customers wanted to connect to the grid. In SafeMon, on the other hand, we see the actual load on the substation – and we thus make decisions based on the actual limitation, and not the theoretical one. On a network with many hundreds of substations, such a difference is a great advantage to us,” says Rognsvåg.

Lessons from installation

Rognsvåg is the project manager for the installation of the SensorHub that makes it possible to collect data from the substations.

“The installation has been extremely quick at all the new substations. These are plug and play installations for our installers. At the slightly older stations, our skilled and solution-oriented installers have had a close dialogue with SafeBase and solved all the challenges along the way. The installers boast a lot about their cooperation with SafeBase,” explains Rognsvåg.

“In the first phase of the rollout, which we are now on target with, we have learned a lot about how to install the solution at different substations – so that the rest of the rollout will go smoothly. Now we are just looking forward to getting this tool at more of our substations so that it can be adopted by a larger part of the organization.

Senior Advisor at BKK, Jon-Bjarte Carslen, can view measurements in real-time, hence having control of critical operational data.

Smooth installation

She also says they are satisfied that almost all the installations have taken place without having to disconnect the power at the substations.

“It helps that the SensorHub is so small when we are installing monitoring in more compact substations.”

In total, project manager Rognsvåg is pleased with the rollout, and has high hopes for the future.

“We are pleased with the product that has been delivered, and we are looking forward to utilising the opportunities provided by substation monitoring and SafeMon.”