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Americans’ safety, productivity, comfort, and convenience depend on the reliable supply of electric power. The electric power system is a complex “cyber-physical” system composed of a network of millions of components spread out across the continent. These components are owned, operated, and regulated by thousands of different entities. Power system operators work hard to assure safe and reliable service, but large outages occasionally happen. Given the nature of the system, there is simply no way that outages can be completely avoided, no matter how much time and money is devoted to such an effort. The system’s reliability and resilience can be improved but never made perfect. Thus, system owners, operators, and regulators must prioritize their investments based on potential benefits.

Enhancing the Resilience of the Nation’s Electricity System focuses on identifying, developing, and implementing strategies to increase the power system’s resilience in the face of events that can cause large-area, long-duration outages: blackouts that extend over multiple service areas and last several days or longer. Resilience is not just about lessening the likelihood that these outages will occur. It is also about limiting the scope and impact of outages when they do occur, restoring power rapidly afterwards, and learning from these experiences to better deal with events in the future.

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Suggested Citation

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Enhancing the Resilience of the Nation's Electricity System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/24836.

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Publication Info

170 pages | 8.5 x 11 | 

ISBNs: 
  • Paperback:  978-0-309-46307-2
  • Ebook:  978-0-309-46310-2
DOI: https://doi.org/10.17226/24836

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