All Things DER: How Advanced Distribution Management Systems Are the First Step to Social Equity

by Dr. Elizabeth Cook, General Manager of Advanced Grid Solutions, Duquesne Light Company

Welcome to the All Things DER podcast! In this podcast, we’ll be digging in, defining, and discussing where the new energy economy is heading with electric industry leaders, and explore all the ways that distributed energy resources can modernize and improve our ever-evolving power grid.

In today’s episode, we’re talking with Mark Vallo, the Manager of Smart Grid Performance and Support at FirstEnergy. We discuss the importance of implementing technologically advanced outage management systems while striving for social equity through the landscape of grid modernization. We also discuss how the political climate of a given region determines the use of DER. From obtaining good information and reliable data to keeping safety the number one goal for both employees and customers, we dig into a variety of ways to continually and incrementally make changes to the power grid to positively impact future generations for years to come.

Here’s what you’ll discover:

  • Why outage management systems need updating, and what FirstEnergy is using for implementing a new ADMS for its 6 million customers in the near future
  • How the political climate of a given state affects the use of DER
  • What the two core tenants of safety and reliability mean for the future of DER and the speed at which we implement such resources
  • How our technology-fueled lifestyles affect the need for increased reliability for families, and how ADMS works to remedy these issues
  • Why DERMS is the logical next step for FirstEnergy after successfully implementing the new ADMS later this year, and why this granular approach to data collection matters
  • How innovative and entrepreneurial thought processes can work to solve social equity and environmental justice issues through the landscape of grid modernization