SCADA Upgradation at Load Despatch Centers to be Completed by 2026: R K Singh

SCADA and EMS systems facilitate centralized remote monitoring of substations


The replacement and upgradation of Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems at various State Load Despatch Centers (SLDC) will be completed by 2026, Union Minister for Power and New & Renewable Energy R. K. Singh told Parliament.

The government has put in place a comprehensive range of advanced technologies and strategic regulations to bolster the power grid’s efficiency, reliability, and security. These encompass real-time monitoring, predictive maintenance utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) algorithms, cybersecurity enhancements, and innovative methods for construction and inspection.

Singh said GRID-INDIA actively monitors real-time parameters originating from various substations and generating stations. This monitoring is centralized at both the National and Regional Load Despatch Centres (NLDC / RLDC), facilitated by a robust SCADA and Energy Management Systems (EMS) infrastructure. This system ensures the continuous oversight of the power system by SLDCs and RLDCs.

Under Regulation 43(4) of the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) (Technical Standards for Construction of Electrical Plants and Electric Lines) Regulations, 2022, the deployment of SCADA systems facilitates centralized remote monitoring and operation of substations, bolstering the efficiency and resilience of the power infrastructure.

The minister said the government has been taking steps for predictive maintenance employing AI and ML algorithms. Sensors installed in grid substations gather critical data, such as oil and winding temperatures and dissolved gas analysis of transformers. Computer-aided tools then analyze this data, enabling precise predictive maintenance.

To fortify the cybersecurity framework of the power sector, the Central Electricity Authority introduced comprehensive guidelines in October 2021. This initiative has led to the development and implementation of robust cybersecurity measures, ensuring the integrity and safety of critical power infrastructure.

Singh said establishing a Computer Security Incident Response Team for the Power sector (CSIRT-Power) under the guidance of CERT-In has been pivotal in coordinating responses to cybersecurity incidents and providing essential support to utilities for preventing, detecting, handling, and responding to such incidents.

In a bid to overcome challenges posed by difficult and inaccessible terrains, Regulation 87 of the CEA (Technical Standards for Construction of Electrical Plants and Electric Lines) Regulations, 2022, has introduced provisions for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles in the construction and inspection of transmission assets. This innovation ensures efficiency and promotes safety in the execution of tasks.

Earlier this year, the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission issued regulations to limit frequency fluctuations within the operating band in the interest of grid security.

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