Failure Analysis of the New York City Power Grid

Wu, Leon; Anderson, Roger N.; Boulanger, Albert G.; Rudin, Cynthia; Kaiser, Gail E.

As U.S. power grid transforms itself into Smart Grid, it has become less reliable in the past years. Power grid failures lead to huge financial cost and affect people’s life. Using a statistical analysis and holistic approach, this paper analyzes the New York City power grid failures: failure patterns and climatic effects. Our findings include: higher peak electrical load increases likelihood of power grid failure; increased subsequent failures among electrical feeders sharing the same substation; underground feeders fail less than overhead feeders; cables and joints installed during certain years are more likely to fail; higher weather temperature leads to more power grid failures. We further suggest preventive maintenance, intertemporal consumption, and electrical load optimization for failure prevention. We also estimated that the predictability of the power grid component failures correlates with the cycles of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) Index.

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Academic Units
Computer Science
Department of Computer Science, Columbia University
Columbia University Computer Science Technical Reports, CUCS-025-14
Published Here
October 29, 2014