Founded by Thomas Edison and his associates in 1885, AEIC is one of the oldest organizations in the electric energy industry. AEIC encourages research and the exchange of technical information and best practices through a committee structure, staffed with experts from management of member companies. AEIC committees exchange information, ideas and solutions to succeed in the ever-changing electric industry. AEIC also provides highly-valued literature including white papers on various topics, load research manuals and publications and underground cable specifications and guides. Since those early meetings, the organization has kept its eyes directed toward the future, expanding its membership internationally, and focusing its energies on finding solutions to problems of mutual concern to electric utilities, worldwide.
AEIC Technical Committees
Through a committee structure, the association addresses the technological problems of planning, building and operating an energy system to serve multiple classes of customers. The AEIC’s seven committees are the backbone of the organization, with each committee staffed with employees from senior management of member companies. Committees work with manufacturers and suppliers to solve problems of mutual concern and to ensure that manufacturers are prepared to meet the needs of the industry.
The Power Generation Committee promotes technological advances in the power generation field by providing a forum for dialogue between manufacturers and users to exchange industry needs and technology development, and to give guidance to other industry organizations. This committee maintains an organization of sufficient influence and significance to cause industry resources to be applied to areas of concern.
The Electric Power Apparatus Committee meets with manufacturers of major electric power apparatus, which provides a forum for communications to encourage the availability of high-quality equipment that meets the operating and maintenance needs of the electric utility industry. The committee also meets with those organizations responsible for research, specification standards and safety.
The Load Research & Analytics Committee encourages the use of load research in utility management decision-making by supporting annual seminars and regional conferences to provide training in the use of new and effective load research methods. Workshops are held to explore in-depth load-research-related topics of concern to the industry, and committee members work with the Electric Power Research Institute to initiate and support effective load research and its applications. This committee informs the industry of load survey results, research methods, and technical advances through publications and white papers, encourages the active participation of member and non-member utilities in the work of the committee, and communicates its application to a wide range of industry problems.
The Meter and Service Committee provides direction for the industry by studying new technology and reporting operating experience of advanced metering equipment and infrastructure and the introduction of service entrance conductors into customer facilities. The committee examines new metering equipment and metering systems, exploring the possibility of making meters and load-measuring equipment compatible throughout the industry.
The Cable Engineering Committee, staffed with specialists in power cable engineering from member companies, provides a forum for exchange of ideas and experiences on utility power cable, and ensures prompt action in the preparation of cable specifications to address engineering and operating improvements. The committee publishes specifications and guides in the interest of promoting safe, economical and reliable power cable and accessories.
The Customer Service Committee identifies and explores key and emerging customer functions, shares insights, and addresses the connected customer’s changing expectations of their electric utility. Customer trends are impacting utilities today and include the following:
- Broad Focus: Digital everything plus continued service via traditional communication channels, active consumerism, tailored customer service experiences, employee as customer/customer as employee, advertising via TV, radio, print, internet, etc.
- Energy Focus: Changing energy sources, emerging energy management technologies, new entrants, growing interest in energy data, shifting roles for consumers in distribution markets
The Power Delivery Committee provides electric utility management an effective means for exchanging ideas, experiences and solutions to the problems of engineering, operating, safety and customer service aspects of delivering electric power. This exchange contributes to the optimum design and operation of the power delivery system — all to the benefit of the consumer and investor. This committee identifies and assesses issues that will substantially impact the planning, design, construction, maintenance and/or operation of electric utility power delivery systems.
Reporting to the AEIC Power Delivery Committee are five subcommittees:
Distributed Energy Resources Subcommittee is focused on both the technical and operational challenges, best practices and solutions implemented that are related to the integration into the electrical grid of distributed energy resources of all sizes, ranging from small residential, commercial/industrial, modest-sized community installations and large utility-scale resources.
Project Management Subcommittee provides a forum for electric utility-focused professionals to collaborate on best practices related to the project management discipline. The subcommittee openly shares successes and challenges related to the use of project management tools, organizational challenges, training, estimating, team dynamics and management support in the utility industry.
Human Resources Subcommittee exists to expand Human Resource competence and knowledge for AEIC members. The subcommittee focuses on human resource issues of power delivery organizations, including trends, legal updates, benchmarking and best practices, in order to advance the contribution of Human Resources in AEIC member organizations.
Storm Team provides a forum for power delivery professionals to exchange ideas and information on past severe storm restoration events and to develop a series of best practices in the areas of storm restoration and system hardening, including storm best practices, pre-storm checklists, storm restoration best practices and storm center practices.
Cost Optimization Subcommittee collaborates, shares and benchmarks cost-saving initiatives that are being considered by member companies with the goal of reducing cost in operations, maintenance, and capital, while maintaining safety, reliability and meeting customer expectations.
Data Analytics Council exists to expand data analytics capabilities within AEIC committees and member companies and to educate employees of AEIC member companies on how to optimize the benefits of data analytics in performing their daily work to enable more data-driven decision making.
It is imperative for leaders in the energy industry to have up-to-date information, because the industry has traditionally experienced rapid growth — economically, technologically and physically. As the energy industry continues to expand throughout the world, utility executives must seize every information opportunity. The AEIC provides its members the opportunity to access information and expertise from fellow members and associates that will help them ensure reliable and economical energy in their service area.
Perhaps AEIC’s philosophy was best expressed by a speaker at its first meeting in 1885, when he said that the organization seeks, "through the interchange of views and experiences . . . to make the knowledge of one, the knowledge of all, to the advantage of the common interests."