Status message

COVID-19 Updates: Visit the University's Safe Campus Website

MIPSYCON 2021 – Tuesday, November 2

General Session

7:30 a.m. – Online Conference Opens

8:00 – Welcome

8:15 – A Conversation with Bob Frenzel, President & CEO of Xcel Energy

This session will touch on multiple topics important to Xcel Energy and the power industry. Including leading the clean energy transition, enhancing the customer experience, keeping bills low and more.

9:00 – Pandemic Response Panel

Frank Harrill, Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc.; Jim Horn, Ulteig; Darla Figoli, Xcel Energy; Mark Fagan, Great River Energy

HR, Facility & Security leaders from Xcel Energy, Ulteig, SEL and Great River Energy share how their respective companies reacted, adjusted and changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. They’ll cover initial responses to the pandemic, how they managed during and what the new normal is looking like today!

10:00 – Break

10:15 – Feasibility Assessment of an AC Interconnection of the North American Eastern and Western Interconnection

Prof. Thomas Overbye, Texas A&M University

This talk will present the dynamic and steady-state issues that need to be considered with synchronous operation of the North American Eastern and Western grid. The talk will also present new techniques for visualizing the results of the large-scale, long duration dynamic simulations.

11:00 – Why Do Good Engineers and Firms Do Bad Things?

Prof. David Schultz, Hamline University

Why do good engineers and firms act unethically? Why do people who apparently know right from wrong nonetheless act unethically? The session will begin with a discussion of the classic Stanley Milgram punishment experiments, seeking to understand how they help explain unethical behavior. The class then uses examples to provide a foundation for an analysis regarding the relationship between work ethics and personal ethics, while seeking to understand whether you could be the next person to act unethically.

Noon – Lunch Break and Optional Presentation

12:15 p.m. – Presentation: Engineers Without Borders—Empowering Communities to Meet Their Basic Needs

Concurrent Sessions


1:00 – A Comparison Between Dielectric Frequency Response and Narrow Band Frequency Response as Methods for Assessing the Insulation of Transformers and Bushings

Sanket Bolar and Abel Gonzalez, Megger USA

Dielectric Frequency Response (DFR) is the term used to describe the behavior of insulation power factor over a range of test frequencies. Insulation power factor testing over multiple frequencies is increasingly being used as a valuable transformer insulation health assessment tool in addition to line frequency power factor testing. This presentation will provide a comparative analysis of the two forms of DFR testing: the full-spectrum version and the narrow-band version.


1:00 – Electric Meter Evolution to a Grid Sensor

Kevin Fennell, Landis+Gyr

With increasing computational power modern meters are now able to not only measure electricity consumption but also provide information for many additional applications on both the grid and consumer side of the meter. This presentation will review some of these emerging use cases.


1:00 – Utilization of PMU Data through Effective Angle Prediction Algorithm for the Prevention of Wide Area Blackouts

Sarina Adhikari, EnerNex, A CESI Company

The presentation will describe a phase angle prediction algorithm that utilizes PMU data to effectively prevent wide scale power outages. Results from algorithm simulations will be presented and discussed.

Relaying I

1:00 – Permissive or Blocking Pilot Protection Schemes? How to Have It Both Ways

Bogdan Kasztenny, Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc.

This paper reviews permissive and blocking pilot schemes for protection of transmission lines. The paper introduces a crossover permissive-blocking scheme that eliminates the need for additional engineering required by many applications of permissive schemes, while allowing fast tripping without the coordination time.

1:45 – Soil Resistivity Testing: What Do I Do with These Numbers?

Joe Gravelle, Xcel Energy

This presentation will review an application where the soil resistivity results were conflicting with other test results and what was done to make sense of the numbers. It will also cover some of the challenges faced to obtain soil resistivity test data and considerations for soil resistivity testing to get results needed for design.

2:30 – Break

1:45 –Leveraging AMI Data for Improved Grid Performance

Bryan Erhlich, Utilismart Corporation


2:30 – Break

1:45 – Drone-ing On - Practical Transmission Applications

Todd Kerr, Power Line Sentry; Nikki Heck, Altalink

Drone technology is quickly advancing while our objective to work as safely and efficiently as possible is stronger than ever – but are you aware of all the ways you can improve worker safety while maximizing your bottom line? In this session we will dive into the strengths and fail points of the different line markers available as well as the different installation methods. From manual to hotstick to bucket truck to helicopter to (yes, you guessed it!) drone and robotic installs.

2:30 – Break

1:45 – Best Practices for Protecting Shunt Reactors

Paul I. Nyombi, Xcel Energy

This presentation uses three typical reactor configurations that include ungrounded wye connected reactors, solidly grounded air core reactors and oil-filled reactors to demonstrate how modern relays can be used to provide simple, yet comprehensive protection schemes for shunt reactors.

2:30 – Break

Concurrent Sessions


3:00 – GIS Substation: Design and Construction in an Urban Environment

Justin Schaffer, Burns & McDonnell

Midwest utilities enjoy an abundant resource—land! What can be learned from a substation project located in urban setting? Learn about overcoming design and construction challenges to increase reliability within a finite land footprint.


3:00 – Rates, DG, and Leveraging AMI Data

Kyle Kopczyk, Power System Engineering, Inc.

The City of Sturgis has been fully deployed with their AMI system since 2015 and have moved from billing usage to having a residential and commercial demand. They have also been moving towards better incorporation of distributed generation from their customers into their system. The city does not have a meter data management system and uses strictly the AMI system to support all rate changes, billing questions, and net metering accounts. This presentation will discuss the meter changes and configurations that needed to support department initiatives.



3:00 – Color-Coding Electrons

Steve Malek, Great River Energy

What generation is using the wires? This presentation will examine a method for identifying the source generation resources of branch power flows using information from production modeling simulations.

Relaying I

3:00 – Analysis of Fundamental Differences in Transformer 87T Differential Protection

Mike Kockott, Hitachi ABB Power Grids

Discusses where 87T functions can differ, the role these differences play in the settings rules that apply, how they impact the measurement quantities, and how they give rise to different overall performance.

3:45 – Migration towards SF6 Alternative Technologies in High Voltage Circuit Breakers

Jon Rogers, Siemens Energy

The high voltage circuit breaker manufacturers have utilized SF6 for more than 40 years. SF6 is scrutinized as it is a considered a very high contributing climate change greenhouse gas by environmental regulatory agencies. Manufacturers of circuit breakers and alternative gases have joined to provide solutions to this issue. The discussion will revolve around what the solutions are being developed, pros and cons to these, and what direction is seen at this time.

4:30 – Adjourn

3:45 – Best Practices for Effective AMI Field Deployments

Brad Lingen, Missouri River Energy Services (MRES)

Looking for a way to eliminate barriers in deploying technology, Missouri River Energy Services (MRES) and Allegiant Utility Services teamed up to create an offering that assists any sized municipal member utility. Brad Lingen from MRES and Jeff DeVries from Allegiant will discuss their collaboration and how it has benefited those MRES members who have chosen to take advantage of the offering.

4:30 – Adjourn

3:45 – Substation in the Sky: Solution When Property Is an Issue

Dustin Kingery, Southern States

A transmission switching substation was needed, however the property required was not available for a traditional substation. This presentation shares the "substation in the sky" solution, which elevates the switching equipment as part of the transmission structures.

4:30 – Adjourn

3:45 – Case Study: Transformer Differential Incorrect Operation Due to System Grounding

Jacobus Theron, GE Grid Solutions

Grounding is a key component of power system design and can adversely affect protection schemes. This paper discusses power system grounding and how an in-zone solidly grounded generator caused a transformer percentage differential to incorrectly operate. Measures are presented to enhance differential security against temporary system grounding events.

4:30 – Adjourn