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Electricity Infrastructure Report Endnotes

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  1. Pylon at Sunset “Smart grid” refers to technologies that modernize the electricity utility grid and improve how electricity is delivered to consumers. It uses “computer-based remote control and automation” with “sensors to gather data (power meters, voltage sensors, fault detectors, etc.), plus two-way digital communication between the device in the field and the utility’s network operations center. A key feature of the smart grid is automation technology that lets the utility adjust and control each individual device or millions of devices from a central location.” (Source: http://energy.gov/oe/technology-development/smart-grid ) It also provides a means to dynamically optimize electricity supply and demand, provides for more widely distributed generation and enables greater system reliability. Source: Title XIII of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA provided legislative support for DOE’s smart grid activities coordinating national grid modernization efforts).
  2. Major power plants are defined here as operational power plants that generate at least 1 MW of power. Source: Electric Power Annual 2010, table 5.1.
  3. There are over 450,000 miles of transmission lines over 100,000 volts, which include over 150,000 miles of transmission lines over 230,000 volts. The latter number is referenced in the 2009 ASCE Report Card on America’s Infrastructure and is referenced by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Source: U.S. Government Accountability Office, www.gao.gov/products/GAO-08-347R.

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