US: Esri, the global leader in location intelligence, announced the completion of a survey entitled, Is Your GIS Grid Modernization Ready? The study was a collaborative effort with Energy Acuity to determine whether US utilities are prepared for grid modernization.

Utilities are grappling with the need to modernize the power grid, and must deal with advanced technology to meet evolving goals, including sustainability, resiliency, and security. According to the new survey, over 85 percent of utilities incorporate GIS into their corporate IT systems. More than 65 percent of utilities report integrating GIS with their outage management system (OMS) and/or distribution management system (DMS).

These results reflect increasing alignment with the position expressed in the US Department of Energy’s 2018 Grid Modernization Initiative report. It states that a modern grid must include “greater resilience to hazards of all types” and “improved reliability for everyday operations.”

“Utilities have long been facing a growing need to update everything from their physical network to processes and internal systems to keep up with newer technologies,” said Matt Piper, Esri global director of utilities and infrastructure solutions. “To meet tomorrow’s challenges, utilities must maintain and deliver greatly expanded network information to all systems and stakeholders, and location intelligence is a foundational element of those capabilities.”

Esri designed its new network modeling framework as an innovative foundation for utility GIS solutions to support a modern grid and its many systems. The new framework models the entire electric network.

The grid modernization study was revealed at DistribuTECH 2019, a gathering where professionals from electric, water, and municipal utilities can network and enhance their knowledge of the transmission and distribution industry.