Development of telecommunications and IT systems
IDGC of Urals (OAO) is an advanced company operating in the energy sector, its efficiency hinging upon IT and automation tools. In the current context successful performance of the power grids (and Company itself) demands three integral elements to be available for use:
- Automated systems dealing with technological process management (calculation of the cost of energy, payment control, planning of wholesale energy market purchases, monitoring of supply junctions, etc.);
- Automated systems dealing with business administration (management of cash flows, calculation of salaries, preparation of accounting statements, etc.);
- Telecommunication systems and IT infrastructure (enforcement of operability of all automated systems and non-stop communications for all Company’s workers).
IT services are extremely important for achieving such Company’s business targets as secured electricity transmission, enhanced quality of services and satisfaction orientation. Advanced process automation also assists in improving efficiency of power grid operations.
Implementation of new IT projects, development and maintenance of existing ones goes on an everyday basis in line with the Company’s strategy for IT and telecommunications. This strategy defines development objectives for Company’s IT, strategic initiatives and measures to achieve them, approved by the Company’s Board of Directors (21) (22), as well as the following IT principles:
During the reported period the Company has prepared and adopted the program on the integrated security system to be set up for the Company’s communication and technological systems in 2016-2018 (23). Under the program we designed a range of information security segments in our Sverdlovenergo and Permenergo branches.
Development of Automated Systems of Technological Management:
The program for upgrade of information acquisition and transmission systems at 35-110 kV substations, approved by SO UES (OAO), is a high-priority target program on the development of automated systems of technological management. The program was initiated and approved in 2010, its scheduled adjustments being made on 11.08.2016.
The progress on other aspects of the ASTM development is presented below:
- Our affiliated company (Yekaterinburg Electric Grid Company) has launched the 1st stage of SCADA-based ADSM hardware and software upgrade. The 2nd stage (calculations) is being implemented, commissioning slated for 2017. The ADSM uses indigenous Russian software.
- Initialization of design of the indigenous Russian ADSM hardware and software solution for “Central Electric Grids” production department. Execution of the project is slated for 2017.
- Arrangement of ADSM uninterruptable power system at 7 35-110 kV substations.
- With the aid of the PAMS we automated the scheduling of ADSM equipment repair and maintenance and monitoring of progress. The PAMS has also certified and classified the ADSM and communications equipment related to information security.
Development of Automation of Business Applications:
Business applications evolved in compliance with requirements of the business and the Board-approved strategy on IT, automation and telecommunications in the following spheres:
- Initialization of the PAMS project (find more in “Network Exploitation” Section).
- Report on automation of the Company’s business processes (BTR project).
The primary goals of the survey is to change existing methods and schemes used for administering business processes in light of modern information technologies, to generate an efficient administering model, consistent with best global practices. A special focus is to enhance return on assets and labor efficiency as well as to decrease the cost of ownership of production assets and to invest reasonably with adjustments for the market environment. The analysis showed that the existing scheme is not aimed at technological assets and consumers and has information gaps in adjacent business processes and administration levels. The essence of the project is to develop a corporate administration system encapsulating all business processes in the shared IT environment, focusing heavily on supply reliability and customer relations.
- 3. Development of the automated control system, liable for connection.
The goal of the project is to build up a shared automated control system, liable for connection, covering every process stage from registering a filed connection request to concluding a contract (registration of requests filed with F2F customer service centers, service portals, production units, preparation of contracts, monitoring of contractual progress, reporting).
- Initialization of the geographic informational system.
The following functions will be automated by the GIS:
- Spatial data control:
- build up of shared spatial data base of the Company’s grid assets;
- build up of centralized spatial data bank covering all service area of the Company;
- GIS-based shared information space for interaction between the Company units;
- quick presentation of reliable mapping and semantic information on the Company’s grid assets.
- Business process automation:
- IT support of processes related to connection by presenting spatial and attribute data on location and credentials of the Company’s grid facilities;
- IT support of processes related to exploitation and development of the Company’s grid facilities.
The project is designed to collect consumption data automatically and to calculate real capacity of the facilities, owned by grid operators, large generators and consumers. The computing system analyzes, processes and prepares data in line with consumer schemes as well as generates reports for the energy market operator and contractors.
The goal of the upgrade is to provide additional services by the system. The core focus of the integration with the PAMS is to exchange data at predetermined intervals between the systems without manual data input/upload procedures.
IT and telecom infrastructure progress:
The telecom system of IDGC of Urals (OAO) is a transport medium administering all business processes. The system is based on a primary communication net, built to bind all facilities of the Company. This primary net serves as a ground for secondary nets providing the following services:
- Dispatcher telephony;
- Corporate telephony;
- Videoconferencing (used to arrange communication with branches, Yekaterinburg Electric Grid Company, Permenergo’s and Sverdlovenergo’s production departments, Rosseti);
- Audio conferencing (used to arrange communication with branches, production departments and distribution units);
- Transfer of data from technological management systems (automated systems of dispatcher management, automated metering system, etc.);
- Transfer of data from information business systems (ERP system, automated system for electronic document flow, etc.);
- Access to Internet, e-mail, intracorporate web-resources, etc.
Telecom networks evolve in compliance with the Board-approved strategy on IT, automation and telecommunications. During the reported period we also achieved the following objectives with regard to development of technological telecom systems:
- IATS communication channels for two 110 kV substations, arranged under the IATS upgrade program approved by SO UES (OAO).
- In-house arrangement of IATS communication channels for seven 35-110 kV substations to improve observability.
- Project documents regarding build-up of the Company’s communications complex facilitating arrangement of 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.
- IATS communication channels for eight 110 kV substations, arranged under the IATS upgrade program approved by SO UES (OAO).
- In-house arrangement of IATS communication channels for eight 35-110 kV substations to improve observability.
- IATS communication channels for three 110 kV substations, arranged under the IATS upgrade program approved by SO UES (OAO).
Participation in “Bridging the Digital Gap” federal action program: The program is socially oriented and stipulates set-up of broadband infrastructure to provide residents of small and remote settlements with telecom services (incl. Internet access). One of prospective and quick means to bring broadband telecom lines to these settlements is to mount fibers onto existing multi-voltage power lines. In line with the program IDGC of Urals (OAO) prepared 73 specifications (950 km of cables) and arranged access of contractors to power lines to have FOCL mounted.
Cost cutting on IT and telecommunications:
During 2016 we did a lot to develop IT infrastructure and reduce expenses due to alignment of administration approaches, compliance with generally accepted corporate standards, reduced quantity of software and hardware, automation of production and technological processes. The Company has spent RUB 281.92 million to automate administration of technological and business processes, upgrade communications facilitating operability of all automation systems. As a result, we observe the progress in quality of administrative and financial discipline, in quality and efficiency of IT services available to all employees of the Company engaged in production and administration of the Company’s operations.
43% of outdated equipment, non-compliant with technical and operating requirements, was upgraded. Expenses on telecommunication services related to Internet access and channel lease were reduced due to lowered tariffs on services and insufficient technical resources of telecom operators to arrange channels for remote distribution zones. Considerable decrease of IT-strategy expenses is a result of correct classification of expenses bringing future economic benefits incurred during the reported period. Since 2015 expenses on upgrade and launches are recognized as deferred costs driving budget expenses down.
Cost-cutting on telecom and technological systems is due to:
- Switchover to in-house ASDM/DOCS equipment maintenance and repair;
- Installation of proprietary communication channels, usage of fibers and unification of contracts with telecom operators;
- Transition of long-distance-calls into the corporate telecom network.