The traditional techniques for distribution grid data acquisition are facing challenges that are structural in nature as the number of end points providing data increases due to new functionality associated with grid modernization, meaning the centralized hub and spoke model for SCADA is becoming inadequate for future large scale systems. These challenges may be addressed with distributed intelligence architectures, but to do so requires an understanding of sensing and measurement principles that apply to the class of systems represented by electric grids and other structured dynamic environments.
These principles include the extension of system state and observability to full scale electric distribution systems, which means that these concepts must be integrated with utility communication networking. Consequently, the measurement system designer must also understand how appropriate sensor network architecture principles apply to the distribution system data acquisition problem.
This paper describes the principles system state and observability as applied to power grids, as well as describing observability strategy and sensor allocation guidelines.