US Utility Power Outage Analysis, Zpryme Reports

In a new Zpryme report, U.S. Utility Outage Analysis, the US-based ETS Insights practice analyzed outage data from the 2008 – 2010 NERC Transmission Availability Data System Reports to identify relevant changes in the number of outages, the number of outage hours, and the causes of outages during this time period.

Among the many advantages of smart grid implementation, the ability to reduce power outages is often underplayed in countries where reliable power is perceived to be a constant fact of life. However, given the critical nature of power in high demand countries like the United States, power outages can be much more disruptive and costly. Over the past five years, the U.S. has averaged 171 major electrical disturbances that affect an average of 19.3 million customers

U.S. Outage Trends, 2008 – 2010 by Zpryme:

  • Overall, significantly more outages (and outage hours) are caused by transmission failure (AC & DC Automatic Sustained Circuit Outages) than by transformer failures.
  • While the number of circuit failures is falling steadily, there is not a direct correlation with the number of hours lost, as those have fluctuated in the recent past. In 2009, despite nearly 450 less outage incidents with AC/DC the US grid logged a high of 98,039 hours worth of outages.
  • The 2012 data show a significant decline in the number of hours, down to 78,000, despite reducing the number of outages by 280.
  • From the transformer side of the data, even though the number of outage incidents remains relatively stable year-to-year, the amount of hours lost to these failures fluctuate wildly from 19,000 to over 44,000.
  • There indicates a real need to protect the more vulnerable transformers where failure would be more catastrophic in terms of time lost.

About Zpryme ETS Insights Practice:

Zpryme-powered Smart Grid Insight Practice helps organizations understand their business environment, engage consumers, inspire innovation, and take action. These practices represent an evolution beyond traditional market research and consulting: combining sound fundamentals, innovative tools and methodologies, industry experience, and creative marketing savvy to supercharge clients’ success. At Zpryme, we don’t produce tables and charts; we deliver opportunity-focused, actionable insight that is both engaging and easy-to-digest. For more information, visit: