DonnaGilmore

Mary Hoffman Takes on the Regulators

SCE Fault (con't) FERC Finding 21 Effect of SONGS Separation Scheme on SONGS Units: The SONGS units tripped due to their turbine control systems detecting unacceptable acceleration following operation of the SONGS separation scheme. Recommendation 21: GOs and GOPs should evaluate the sensitivity of the acceleration control functions in turbine control systems to verify that transient perturbations or fault conditions in the transmission system resulting in unit acceleration will not result in unit trip without allowing time for protective devices to clear the fault on the transmission system. When the SONGS separation scheme operated, turbines at SONGS began to accelerate in excess of their control system setting causing both units to trip offline. The tripping of the SONGS units in this manner raises questions about the sensitivity of the turbine control system’s settings. The units are expected to withstand severe faults on the transmission system and allow the transmission protection systems to operate without the generators tripping offline. The coordination required for this protection is not a traditional relay-to-relay coordination; rather, the setting for the acceleration function should be coordinated with capabilities of the turbine and with the system response anticipated following operation of transmission protection systems for faults under various system conditions. The setting should also be coordinated with the system response following operation of the SONGS separation scheme. Had the turbine control system acceleration function been coordinated in this manner, the trip of the units may have been avoided.
— March 24, 2015 1:56 p.m.

Mary Hoffman Takes on the Regulators

SCE fault: P102-103 http://www.ferc.gov/legal/staff-reports/04-27-2... Finding 20: SCE did not coordinate the SONGS separation scheme with other protection systems, including protection and turbine control systems on the two SONGS generators. As a result, SCE did not realize that SONGS Units 2 & 3 would trip after operation of the separation scheme. Recommendation: SCE should ensure that the SONGS separation scheme is coordinated with other protection schemes, such as the generation protection and turbine control systems on the units at SONGS and UFLS schemes. SCE, the TO and TOP of the SONGS separation scheme, did not perform any protection system coordination studies for the separation scheme it implemented at SONGS. The scheme is intended to isolate five 230 kV lines simultaneously if its preset value is exceeded for a sustained period. If SCE had coordinated the separation scheme with other protection and generation control systems at SONGS, it may have recognized the potential for the operation of the SONGS separation scheme to cause the SONGS generators to trip. Coordination in this context requires system studies to assess the impact of operation of the RAS on the power system, including potential interaction with other RASs and protection systems, such as UFLS schemes. In addition to the consequences at SONGS itself, the lack of coordination of the systems means that, when the scheme operates, the system enters an unknown state. During the event, the operation of the protection scheme significantly contributed to the blackout of SDG&E, CFE, and Yuma—an effect neither coordinated nor adequately studied prior to the event. The inquiry’s simulation indicates that SDG&E, CFE and, Yuma would not have been blacked out if the SONGS separation scheme had not operated, with limited impact to the rest of the Western Interconnection. When the SONGS separation scheme operated, turbines at SONGS began to accelerate in excess of their control system setting causing both units to trip offline. The tripping of the SONGS units in this manner raises questions about the sensitivity of the turbine control system’s settings. The units are expected to withstand severe faults on the transmission system and allow the transmission protection systems to operate without the generators tripping offline. The coordination required for this protection is not a traditional relay-to-relay coordination; rather, the setting for the acceleration function should be coordinated with capabilities of the turbine and with the system response anticipated following operation of transmission protection systems for faults under various system conditions. The setting should also be coordinated with the system response following operation of the SONGS separation scheme. Had the turbine control system acceleration function been coordinated in this manner, the trip of the units may have been avoided.
— March 24, 2015 1:54 p.m.

Mary Hoffman Takes on the Regulators

See FERC Approves Fifth Settlement in 2011 Southwest Blackout Case, November 28, 2014. http://www.ferc.gov/media/news-releases/2014/20... FERC approved a stipulation and consent agreement among FERC’s Office of Enforcement, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), and the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) that includes a $6 million civil penalty and resolves the investigation by FERC Enforcement staff and NERC into CAISO’s involvement in the Sept. 8, 2011, Southwest blackout. Enforcement staff and NERC concluded that CAISO had failed to appropriately monitor the current flow on Path 44, or otherwise take corrective action to avert operation of the intertie separation scheme at the San Onofre nuclear generating plant switchyard. Initiation of the intertie separate scheme contributed to tripping the San Onofre nuclear generating plant offline, and eventually resulted in the complete blackout of San Diego and the Baja California control area operated by Comisión Federal de Electricidad.
— March 24, 2015 11:56 a.m.

San Onofre to Remain Offline Through Summer

Edison is planting unsubstantiated fears of possible blackouts this summer. Ask for their documentation to back up these false, misleading claims. The 6/8/2012 OC Register article says "State Officials have warned of possible rotating blackouts if a heat wave hits...." What State Officials? The alphabet soup of agencies that have responsibility for ensuring we have power and electric grid stability (CPUC, CAISO, FERC and NERC) all have written documentation stating we should not have blackouts -- even with a heat wave. CPUC energy charts show a 40% surplus of available power in California. CAISO documentation says it is unlikely we will have blackouts -- they have numerous contingencies to avoid them - even under the most severe conditions. FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff says we'll be in fine shape this summer without San Onofre. NERC projected reserve margins in California are above the regional target of 15.1%. (CPUC requires a reserve margin of 15%.). See details at http://sanonofresafety.org/energy-options/ Edison doesn't want you to know we will be just fine without San Onofre. They plan to start testing the defective steam generators shortly. "Don't worry about the steam you'll see coming out of San Onofre -- we're just testing", their spokesperson says. However, we all should worry. It means they are planning to push for a restart of these poorly redesigned steam generators. We were "lucky" last time only a “small amount” of radiation leaked into the air from a ruptured tube -- it could have been more serious. When will our luck run out? No one knows -- not even Edison. But they're losing millions of dollars every day these reactors are shut down, so they are motivated to get their money tree back online as soon as possible while we're on the hook for over a billion dollars for defective equipment, repairs and other expenses for keeping these old reactors running. Help spread the word: "we don't need San Onofre for energy, so why are we living with the risks?" Get the facts and free tools to help educate the public and our elected officials. We need to take action now before it's too late. Unfortunately, no one else is going to do it for us. http://sanonofresafety.org/
— June 8, 2012 3:19 p.m.

More Danger Signs From San Onofre's "Other" Reactor

To stay informed about San Onofre issues, go to http://sanonofresafety.org/ Edison has demonstrated that San Onofre does not provide clean or reliable energy. And government documents show we have a surplus of energy without the two nuclear plants. The California electric grid operator has various contingency plans so we will not have rolling blackout in the summer -- even with peak demand. Their annual Transmission Plans state we don't need San Onofre for stability, even under the most severe contingencies. Who are these "experts" expressing concern over the ability to meet summer’s peak demands? Please name them. This is too serious an issue for this fear mongering of unnamed sources. Don't allow the deception to continue. Let's stick to the facts. Edison and SDG&E customers pay billions of dollars to keep this plant running, including paying for these defective generators -- while Edison makes millions in profits. And now the CPUC is requiring us to pay millions for earthquake studies and maintenance for a nuclear plant we don't need. Why are they doing this? Both nuke plants kill millions of marine life every year with their Once Through Cooling technology, yet the California Water Resources Control Board is allowing these plants to continue to operate for years, with no viable plan on the horizon to mitigate the destruction of our marine life. They have the authority to shut these plants down. Why are they not doing it? We're sitting ducks with the tons of toxic waste sitting at that plant. NRC data shows San Onofre has the worst safety record of all US nuclear power plants and the highest rate of retaliation against employees who report safety problems. Edison will try to say they are improving to deflect from the fact that they are the worst in the nation. They continue to use poor judgment in their management decisions and the NRC has put that in their performance reports. The decision to redesign the steam generators could have cost us our cities. Steam generator failures can cause a loss of water, resulting in a meltdown and large on-going releases of toxic radiation. You may not be investing in Edison stock, but you are investing your lives and everything you hold dear to you in Southern California.
— April 13, 2012 6:27 p.m.

San Onofre Faces More Challenges on Multiple Fronts

Sign the California Nuclear Initiative petition today. If we get this on the ballot for November, the decision to effectively keep the plant shut down will be up to the people. Sign and mail petitions by Monday 4/9/2012. Download petitions at http://sanonofresafety.org/ Thanks Dave Rice for posting the Safety Allegations Chart! The public needs to know this plant has the worst safety record of all US plants. And that record continues today. Edison says they are improving, but employees tell us they are scared to death to report safety problems for fear of losing their jobs, so now less safety problems are being reported! San Onofre has the highest rate of retaliation against employees, too! The NRC says there is nothing they can do about it because there is no regulation that covers this -- they can't even issue a violation notice for this. But there is something we can do -- download and sign the petition by Monday April 9th. Donna Gilmore
— April 8, 2012 3:53 p.m.

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