Leader’s Corner: Reorganization

Reorganization Part II

Authors: Miriam Sanders, Ken Edwards, Damir Novosel, and Miroslav Begovic

Once again this column is coming to you, the reader and PES member, from the desk of the PES President, the PES President Elect, the Vice President of Technical activities, and the Technical Council Vice-Chair to update you on the restructuring of the PES Technical Committees and Technical Activities. As noted in the previous column there has been ground work laid for re-aligning the technical committees to the changes that are happening in the power and energy industry with new technologies and their applications and impact. The Technical Council has formed the Committee Structure Task Force led by Doug Houseman to make restructuring recommendations. Based on those recommendations, the Technical Council formed the Committee Structure Task Groups (CSTGs) that is in the process of reviewing specific areas of the proposed structure changes with feedback from technical committee members. Our goal is to have a transparent review process of the proposed structure and to include membership comments in the process. This is an important and far-reaching endeavor, and it behooves every PES member involved in technical activities to provide his or her views on the changes being proposed or discussed. The end goal is to eliminate the shortcomings of the system we have had in the past, and to prepare for the changes brought about by new technologies and the way we will all do business. Some of the salient features of the structural changes being evaluated are outlined in the following text.

In the present configuration, there are twenty one technical committees that encompass traditional subjects such as Transmission and Distribution, Transformers, Switchgear, Relaying, Communications, Substations, Operations and Planning, Battery Storage, Energy Development as well as coordinating committees addressing Wind and Solar Power, Intelligent Grid, Marine Systems, and Emerging Technologies. But through Technical Council review (as described in the previous Leader’s Corner) and three surveys conducted with the technical committees, several areas of no coverage or weak coverage were exposed. Some of those areas Cyber and Physical Security, Micro Grid systems and operations, Direct Current Systems (although related components have been covered), Customer Premise (i.e. Home Area Networks), Markets, and Environmental aspects. There were also several subjects, such as communications, that were covered across several committee but require improved coordination. So the proposal by the task force was to combine several coordinating committees, re-distribute subject matters among committees and to create new committees where needed. Two coordinating committees (Intelligent Grid & Emerging Technology) were combined and Wind &Solar coordinating committee folded into a new Energy Development committee. Furthermore, several technical committees merged with existing or new technical committees, along with several technical committees being renamed. This resulted in eighteen coordinating and technical committees as shown below.

Proposed Coordination and Technical Committees

  1. Intelligent Grid & Emerging Technologies Coordinating Committee
  2. Marine Systems Coordinating Committee *
  3. Conductors
  4. Electric Machinery *
  5. Energy Development
  6. Energy Storage & Stationary Battery
  7. Grid Communications & Cyber Security
  8. Nuclear Power Engineering *
  9. Power System Analysis Methods
  10. Power System Dynamic Performance *
  11. Power System Planning & Operations
  12. Smart Buildings, Loads & Customer Systems
  13. System Protection
  14. Substations
  15. Surge Protective Devices *
  16. Switchgear *
  17. Transformers
  18. Transmission & Distribution

Note: Those marked with * indicate no changes.

These changes of names and the total number of the committees will require updating the scope of the existing committees and restructuring the subcommittees and working groups to accommodate the changes and reflect the scopes of the merged committees as well as anticipated changes in technology.

The Smart Buildings, Loads and Customer Systems is a new committee focusing on evolving area of end uses, load control, demand response as well as home and building energy management networks. The PES is excited to bring this new area into focus for our members. We should emphasize here that those changes are not being arbitrarily introduced – they are the result of many meetings and deliberations of the leadership of PES Technical Activities and they reflect the prevailing opinions of those experts who are currently shaping those activities and their many consequences. However, that is not a guarantee of the best outcome, and we would like to use this opportunity to attract our members’ attention to the complete set of the changes (yet to appear on the web site and to be discussed at the General Meeting in Denver in July 2015). Your comments and opinions will help us formulate the end result, which would truly reflect the needs and wishes of the majority of PES members.

Another area of interest is the formation of the Grid Communications and Cyber Security Committee, which takes the existing Power Systems Communications Committee and adds physical and cyber security to its scope, while bringing in several subcommittees from the Substations and Power Systems Relaying Committees that address communication technologies. This group is being led by Roger Hedding with assistance from Dan Nordell and Craig Preuss.

Power Systems Planning and Implementation is planned to be combined with Power Systems Operations to create one area of focus for the overall operations of the power systems, including economics from the Power Systems Analysis, Computing and Economics Committee. The Power Systems Analysis, Computing and Economics Committee will be renamed the Power System Analysis Methods Committee. This effort is being led by Hong Chen and ML Chan.

While much work has been put in by our volunteers such as yourself, it is still not finalized. We need your input. An IEEE PES web site, which has more details on the recommended changes, is established for your input. We will then take that input and include it in our further restructuring process.

Furthermore, during the 2015 PES General Meeting in Denver, CO, we will be holding “town hall” meetings to personally hear your feedback. Please look for this in the schedule.

Our process to include your input and finalize restructuring is described below.

  1. Inform membership about the status and ask for feedback using IEEE PES media. The Committee Structure website is set for providing information and collecting feedback. – by end of June 2015
    1. Town-hall meeting at the PES General Meeting to, in person, inform the membership and collect feedback – July 2015
    2. Membership to provide feedback on the PES website – by August 28, 2015
    3. IEEE PES staff collects and summarizes the feedback for input to the Committee Structure Task Groups –   by mid-September 2015
  2. Based on membership feedback, the Committee Structure Task Groups will update the proposal and submit it to the PES Technical Council/Technical Committees, the PES Long-Range Planning Committee, and the PES Governing Board for review.
    1. Update the restructuring proposal – by end of October 2015
    2. Review the updated proposal by the PES Technical Council/Technical Committees, the PES Long-Range Planning committee and the PES Executive committee – by end of November 2015
  3. The Committee Structure Task Force to incorporate above comments – by end of 2015
  4. Implement issue resolution process in cooperation among the PES Technical Council, the PES Long Range Planning, and the PES Governing Board to review and vote on the document – all approvals will be with a 2/3 majority affirmation.
    1. Joint Technical Council and Long Range Planning committee meeting to vote on the proposal- January 2016 (in conjunction with the Joint Technical Committee Meeting)
    2. The PES Governing Board meeting to vote on the proposal- January 2016 (in conjunction with the Joint Technical Committee Meeting)
  5. Update membership about the status using the IEEE PES media and ask for the membership to approve the changes – by end of March, 2016
  6. If approved, start implementing this new structure – April 2016
  7. Hold a town hall meetings in conjunction with the 2016 PES General Meeting to further inform the membership about the changes – July 2016

The proposed timeline and process is tentative and, just like everything else, subject to changes and modifications, including incorporating your feedback. We would like to offer our assurances that every effort will be extended to evaluate and incorporate all constructive comments and suggestions which will be received during the process of updating the Technical Committee Restructuring Proposal. Stay tuned.