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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Terrorism and the
Electric Power Delivery System

Committee on Enhancing the Robustness and Resilience of Future Electrical Transmission and Distribution in the United States to Terrorist Attack

Board on Energy and Environmental Systems

Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
               OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
Washington, D.C.
www.nap.edu

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS • 500 Fifth Street, NW • Washington, DC 20001

NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance.

This study was supported by Contract HSHQPA-05-C-00016 between the National Academy of Sciences and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project.

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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

Advisers to the Nation on Science, Engineering, and Medicine

The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences.

The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Charles M. Vest is president of the National Academy of Engineering.

The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine.

The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. Charles M. Vest are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council.

www.national-academies.org

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COMMITTEE ON ENHANCING THE ROBUSTNESS AND RESILIENCE OF FUTURE ELECTRICAL TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION IN THE UNITED STATES TO TERRORIST ATTACK

M. GRANGER MORGAN, NAS,1 Carnegie Mellon University, Chair

MASSOUD AMIN, University of Minnesota

EDWARD V. BADOLATO,2 Integrated Infrastructure Analytics Inc.

WILLIAM O. BALL, Southern Company Services

ANJAN BOSE, NAE,3 Washington State University

CLARK W. GELLINGS, Electric Power Research Institute

MICHEHL R. GENT, North American Electric Reliability Corporation (retired)

DIANE MUNNS, Edison Electric Institute

SHARON L. NELSON, State of Washington Attorney General’s Office (retired)

DAVID K. OWENS, Edison Electric Institute

LOUIS L. RANA, Consolidated Edison Company of New York

B. DON RUSSELL JR., NAE,Texas A&M University

RICHARD E. SCHULER, Cornell University

PHILIP R. SHARP, Resources for the Future

CARSON W. TAYLOR, NAE, Bonneville Power Administration (retired)

SUSAN F. TIERNEY, Analysis Group

VIJAY VITTAL, NAE, Arizona State University

PAUL C. WHITSTOCK, Marsh USA Inc.

Project Staff

Board on Energy and Environmental Systems

ALAN CRANE, Study Director

DUNCAN BROWN, Senior Program Officer (part time)

HARRISON T. PANNELLA, Senior Program Officer (until July 2007)

JAMES J. ZUCCHETTO, Director, BEES

National Academy of Engineering Program Office

PENELOPE GIBBS, Senior Program Associate


____________________

1NAS, National Academy of Sciences.

2The committee notes with regret Edward Badolato’s death in November 2008. It greatly appreciates his contributions to this report.

3NAE, National Academy of Engineering

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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BOARD ON ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS

DOUGLAS M. CHAPIN, NAE, MPR Associates Inc., Chair

ROBERT FRI, Resources for the Future, Vice Chair

RAKESH AGRAWAL, NAE, Purdue University

ALLEN J. BARD, NAS, University of Texas, Austin

MARILYN BROWN, Georgia Institute of Technology

PHILIP R. CLARK, NAE, GPU Nuclear Corporation (retired)

MICHAEL CORRADINI, NAE, University of Wisconsin, Madison

E. LINN DRAPER JR., NAE, American Electric Power Inc. (retired)

CHARLES H. GOODMAN, Southern Company

DAVID G. HAWKINS, Natural Resources Defense Council

DAVID K. OWENS, Edison Electric Institute

WILLIAM F. POWERS, NAE, Ford Motor Company (retired)

TONY PROPHET, HP Personal Systems Group

MICHAEL P. RAMAGE, NAE, ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company

MAXINE L. SAVITZ, NAE, Honeywell Inc. (retired)

PHILIP R. SHARP, Resources for the Future

SCOTT W. TINKER, University of Texas, Austin

Staff

JAMES ZUCCHETTO, Director

DUNCAN BROWN, Senior Program Officer (part-time)

ALAN CRANE, Senior Program Officer

JOHN HOLMES, Senior Program Officer

MARTIN OFFUTT, Senior Program Officer (until April 2007)

MATT BOWEN, Senior Program Associate (until November 2007)

JENNIFER BUTLER, Financial Assistant

DANA CAINES, Financial Associate

PANOLA GOLSON, Program Associate (until May 2007)

LANITA JONES, Program Associate

KATHERINE BITTNER, Senior Project Assistant

____________________

NOTE: Board and staff membership as of the date of initial approval of this report in 2007.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Foreword

The electric power transmission and distribution system (the grid) is a critical and extraordinarily complex part of the nation’s infrastructure. The National Academy of Engineering called the grid the world’s largest integrated machine and a central part of the greatest engineering achievement of the 20th century—electrification of modern society. Reliable electricity service is essential to health, welfare, national security, communication, and commerce. Because of its scale, geographic reach, and complexity, however, the grid also poses many security challenges in maintaining reliable operation. Furthermore, more than 90 percent of the U.S. power grid is privately owned and regulated by the states, making it challenging for the federal government to address potential vulnerabilities to its operation, and perhaps especially its vulnerability to terrorist attack.

This report, prepared by a committee of dedicated experts assembled by the National Research Council (NRC), addresses those vulnerabilities and how they can be reduced. The committee began work in the fall of 2004 and completed it in the fall of 2007 with the intention of releasing the report by the end of that year. As required under the contract, the report was submitted to the sponsor, the Science and Technology Directorate of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), for security classification review.

In August 2008, following protracted discussions regarding the information that would be suitable for public dissemination, DHS concluded that the report would be classified in its entirety under the original classification authority vested in the DHS undersecretary for science and technology. Because the committee believed that the report as submitted contained no restricted information, the NRC requested the formal classification guidance constituting the basis for the classification decision. That guidance was not provided, and so in August 2010, the NRC submitted a formal request for an updated security classification review. Finally, in August 2012, the current full report was approved for public release, reversing the original classification decision, except that several pages of information deemed classified are available to readers who have the necessary security clearance.

We regret the long delay in approving this report for public release. We understand the need to safeguard security information that may need to remain classified. But openness is also required to accelerate the progress with current technology and implementation of research and development of new technology to better protect the nation from terrorism and other threats.

Even though the committee’s work was completed in 2007, the report’s key findings remain highly relevant. We believe that we have a responsibility to make this report available to the public. Major cascading blackouts in the U.S. Southwest in 2011, and in India in 2012, underscore the need for the measures discussed in this report. The nation’s power grid is in urgent need of expansion and upgrading. Incorporating the technologies discussed in the report can greatly reduce the grid’s vulnerability to cascading failures, whether initi-

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initiated by terrorists, nature, or malfunctions. In fact the report already has helped DHS focus on research aimed at developing a recovery transformer that could be deployed rapidly if many large power transformers were destroyed. Electric utilities and other private sector entities, state and local governments, and others involved with electric power are also likely to find the information in this report very useful. Concurrent with the report’s release to the public, a workshop is being planned to address changes that have occurred since the report’s completion in 2007. It is of vital interest to us all to ensure that the risk of a widespread, long-term blackout is minimized. We hope that the effort reflected in this report will contribute to achieving that goal.

img

Ralph J. Cicerone Charles M. Vest
President, National Academy of Sciences President, National Academy of Engineering
Chair, National Research Council Vice-Chair, National Research Council
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Preface

The electric power transmission and distribution systems are the wires and associated equipment that carry power from central generators to end users. Such systems provide almost all of the electricity that is essential for the operation of the economy and for human well-being. They also are difficult to protect and have been attacked by terrorists elsewhere in the world. Therefore, it is important to think about what can be done to make them less vulnerable to attack, how power can be rapidly restored if an attack occurs, and how important services can be sustained while the power is out. This report explores all of these issues, describes the current situation, and makes recommendations for improvements.

This report was requested by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as part of its efforts to protect the nation’s critical infrastructure. The National Research Council (NRC) established the Committee on Enhancing the Robustness and Resilience of Future Electrical Transmission and Distribution in the United States to Terrorist Attack to conduct the study. The committee’s statement of task is given in Appendix A. Committee members were selected from academia, industry, state government agencies, and other organizations. They brought considerable expertise on electric power networks, their operation and regulation, security, and other issues. Biographical sketches of the committee members are presented in Appendix B.

The committee met six times in 2005 and 2006 to gather information from public sources (listed in Appendix C) and to discuss the key issues. It also held several conference calls.

Throughout the study the committee worked carefully to balance the need to explore issues with sufficient depth to ensure that key decision makers and other readers can understand the problem well enough to take informed action, while at the same time not laying out a “cookbook” that tells terrorists how to plan an attack that would do maximum damage. Thus, for example, the committee has been intentionally vague about some specific vulnerabilities or some modes of attack.

Chapter 1 frames the problem. It briefly describes the transmission and distribution systems; notes the differences between common disruptions and intentional attacks on the system; asks who might want to attack the system; and explores what the impact of such attacks might be.

Chapter 2 analyzes the structure and operation of the transmission and distribution system affecting the vulnerabilities that it faces. In the three chapters that follow the committee discusses the vulnerabilities of the system in terms of physical attack (Chapter 3); cyber security for guarding against/thwarting attacks on communications, sensors, and controls (Chapter 4); and the people who run, or have access to, the system (Chapter 5).

Chapter 6 focuses on how the system can be protected and how it can be modified to minimize the damage if it is attacked.

Once portions of the transmission and distribution system have been disrupted, restoring service becomes important. Chapter 7 discusses how this is currently done, how restoration

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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after a terrorist attack might be different, and what preparations need to be taken to deal with such events.

Because the nation’s electric power transmission and distribution systems cannot be made completely impervious to harm from natural or terrorist causes, Chapter 8 explores a different part of the problem—how to ensure that critical services can be maintained if and when the power system is disrupted, especially for a lengthy period.

New technology can do much to reduce the vulnerability of the nation’s electric power system to the risks posed by accidental and natural disruption and terrorist attack and reduce the costs of countering those risks. Chapter 9 explores research needs for reducing vulnerability and puts those in the context of overall electric power system R&D needs.

Chapters 2 through 5, which lay out the problems, end with a set of conclusions but no recommendations. Chapters 6 through 9 consider possible solutions to these problems. They end with both findings and recommendations. Chapter 10 draws these recommendations together and highlights those that the committee views as most important.

I greatly appreciate the efforts made by the many highly qualified experts on the committee. The committee operated under the auspices of the NRC Board on Energy and Environmental Systems and is grateful for the able assistance of James Zucchetto, Alan Crane, Panola Golson, and Duncan Brown of the NRC staff, and of Penelope Gibbs of the NAE Program Office staff.

M. Granger Morgan, Chair

Committee on Enhancing the Robustness and Resilience of Future Electrical Transmission and Distribution in the United States to Terrorist Attack

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Acknowledgments

The Committee on Enhancing the Robustness and Resilience of Electrical Transmission and Distribution in the United States to Terrorist Attacks is grateful to the many individuals who contributed their time and effort to this National Research Council (NRC) study. The presentations at committee meetings provided valuable information and insight on electricity technologies and system operations. The committee thanks the following individuals who provided briefings:

Edward V. Badolato, Integrated Infrastructure Analytics Inc.,

William Ball, Southern Company Services,

Tom Bowe, PJM Interconnection,

John Caskey, National Electrical Manufacturers Association,

Christopher L. DeMarco, University of Wisconsin-Madison,

James Fama, Edison Electric Institute,

Joseph Fiorito, Caterpillar Inc.,

Clark Gellings, Electric Power Research Institute,

Michehl R. Gent, North American Electric Reliability Council,

David Hall, Tennessee Valley Authority,

David Hawkins, California ISO,

Bruce A. Hedman, Energy and Environmental Analysis Inc.,

David Meyer, U.S. Department of Energy,

Scott Mix, KEMA Inc.,

Dave Nevius, North American Electric Reliability Council,

David K. Owens, Edison Electric Institute,

William Parks, U.S. Department of Energy,

Lou Rana, Consolidated Edison Company of New York,

William Rees Jr., U.S. Department of Homeland Security,

Julio Rodriguez, Idaho National Laboratory,

Robert Schainker, Electric Power Research Institute,

Gene Tsudik, University of California, Irvine, and

Joseph Weiss, KEMA Inc. (via telephone).

This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the NRC’s Report Review Committee. The purpose of the independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report:

Daniel Bienstock, Columbia University,

Earl Boebert, Sandia National Laboratories (retired),

Tom Bowe, PJM Interconnection,

Doug Chapin (NAE), MPR Associates,

Thomas Garrity, Siemens Power Transmission & Distribution,

Michael Greenberg, Rutgers University,

Thomas Overbye, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,

Larry Papay (NAE), Science Applications International Corporation (retired),

Walter Robb (NAE), Vantage Management,

Hal Scherer (NAE), Commonwealth Electric Company (retired),

Rick Sergel, North American Electric Reliability Corporation, and

Irvin (Jack) White, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (retired).

Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Chris Whipple, Review Monitor, and Naraim G. Hingorani, Review Coordinator. Appointed by the National Research Council, they were responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution.

The individuals listed below responded to the committee’s questionnaire on research and development needs for transmission and distribution systems, as discussed in Chapter 9. This exercise was important in helping the committee to prioritize R&D needs for countering terrorism.

Michael F. Ahern, Northeast Utilities,

Kenneth Anderson, Tri-State Generation & Transmission Association Inc.,

Navin B. Bhatt, American Electric Power Service Corp.,

Steve DeCarlo, New York Power Authority,

John L. Del Monaco, Public Service Electric & Gas Co.,

Douglas R. Fitchett, American Electric Power Service Corp.,

Brice Freeman, Electric Power Research Institute,

Paul Hines, Carnegie Mellon University,

Jim Hunter, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers,

Ed Jakubiak, Detroit Edison Co.,

Gregg Lawry, Alliant Energy Corporation,

Glenn L. McCullough Jr., TVA (retired),

William E. Muston, TXU Power,

James T. Rhodes, Virginia Power (retired),

David E. Schleicher, PPL Electric Utilities Corp.,

David G. Victor, Stanford University, and

Thomas M. Wick, We Energies.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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3 PHYSICAL SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS FOR ELECTRIC POWER SYSTEMS

The Threat

Power System Choke Points and Vulnerabilities

Points of Vulnerability

Countermeasures

Repair and Restoration

Consequence Management

Post 9/11 Power Industry Physical Security Enhancements

Conclusions

References

4 VULNERABILITIES OF SYSTEMS FOR SENSING, COMMUNICATION, AND CONTROL

Sensing, Communication, and Control Subsystems

Functions of Sensing, Communication, and Control Elements of a Typical Power System

Threats and Risk

Toward Secure Systems for Sensing, Communication, and Control

Conclusions

Bibliography

5 VULNERABILITIES RELATED TO THE PEOPLE WHO RUN THE ELECTRIC POWER SYSTEM

Security Threats from Insiders

Planning, Training, and Rehearsal

Preparatory Activities

First Responders

Errors and Automation

Aging Workforce, Recruiting, and Training

Workforce Vulnerability to Pandemics

Conclusions

References

6 MITIGATING THE IMPACT OF ATTACKS ON THE POWER SYSTEM

Bulk Power System Engineering

Substation Design and Modernization

Power System Protective Relaying

Sensors

Automatic Controls for Power Systems

Power System Operations and Energy Management Systems

Distribution Engineering

Distributed Generation/Energy Sources

Findings and Recommendations

Findings

Recommendations

Bibliography

7 RESTORATION OF THE ELECTRIC POWER SYSTEM AFTER AN ATTACK

Planning for the Aftermath of a Terrorist Attack

Ensuring Access to Physical Equipment for Restoration

Organizing for Restoration

Coordination of Essential Services

Crisis Communication

Partnering for Mutual Assistance

Additional Special Considerations

Testing for Restoration—Drills

Restoration Considerations

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Service Restoration

Black-Start Equipment

Restoring Damaged Infrastructure

Communications with the Public

Findings and Recommendations

Findings

Recommendations

References

8 STRATEGIES FOR SECURING CRUCIAL SERVICES AND CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE EVENT OF AN EXTENDED POWER OUTAGE

The Need for Planning for Outages

Strategies for Securing Crucial Services

Assessing and Mitigating Vulnerabilities

Improving the Reliability of Services

The Importance of Federal Leadership

Findings and Recommendations

Finding

Recommendations

References

9 RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT NEEDS FOR THE ELECTRIC POWER DELIVERY SYSTEM

R&D for Meeting Three Broad Goals

Thwarting Attacks

Reducing Vulnerability to Attacks

Reducing the Impact of an Attack

Major Technology Areas for Reducing Vulnerability to Natural Disasters and Terrorist Attacks

Technologies That Allow Significant Increases in Power Flow

Equipment That Allows Greater Control of Energy Flows

Advanced Monitoring and Communications Equipment

Technologies That Enable Increased Asset Utilization

Technologies That Are Particularly Intended to Enhance Security

Technologies That Enable Greater Connectivity and Control

Technologies to Reduce Demand on the Power System

Distributed Energy Resources and Power Technologies

R&D Priorities

How Much Research?

Funding Research and Development

Current Situation and Challenges

A Possible Path Forward

Alternative Views of How Power Systems Could Evolve

The Decentralized Approach

The Centralized Approach

Findings and Recommendations

Findings

Recommendations for R&D to Reduce Vulnerability to Terrorism

References

10 RECOMMENDATIONS

Specific Recommendations for the Department of Homeland Security

Additional Recommendations

Additional Recommendations Primarily for Active Participation by DHS

Recommendations Primarily for Utilities, System Operators, and Law Enforcement

Recommendations Primarily for Congress and/or State Legislatures

Recommendations Primarily for Standards-setting Groups

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Tables, Figures, and Boxes

TABLES

S.1 Examples of Options for Minimizing Vulnerability

1.1 Some Worldwide Examples of Cascading Power Failures with Potential or Actual Widespread Impact

2.1 Major Industry Players in the U.S. Electric Industry

8.1 Examples of Critical Social Services That Depend on the Availability of Electric Power

9.1 Promising Research Technologies for Reducing Vulnerability

H.1 Research Area Options Primarily for the Existing Bulk Power (Transmission) System Architecture

H.2 Research Area Options for Enabling New Bulk Power (Transmission) System Architecture

H.3 Research Area Options Primarily for Existing Distribution System Architecture

H.4 Research Area Options for Enabling New Distribution System Architecture

H.5 Research Area Options Primarily for Existing Device and Building Systems

H.6 Research Area Options for Enabling New Device and Building Systems Architecture

FIGURES

1.1a System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) indicators for U.S. utilities for the period 1992 to 2001 (excluding major events)

1.1b System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI) indicators for U.S. utilities for the period 1992 to 2001 (excluding major events)

1.2a System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) indicators internationally for the period 1992 to 2001 (excluding only interruptions caused by major storms and hurricanes)

1.2b System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI) indicators internationally for the period 1992 to 2001 (excluding only interruptions caused by major storms and hurricanes)

1.3  Relative frequency of electrical outages in the United States between 1984 and 2000

1.4 Frequency of electrical outages in the United States over time

1.5 Annual number of transmission loading relief events since 1997

1.6 Illustrative analogy of electric transmission and distribution

1.7 Simple classification of potential power system attackers

2.1 The NERC regions, along with the interconnection areas

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4.1 Perceived threats to power system control centers as reported in a survey of electric utilities conducted by EPRI in 2000

4.2 Simplified diagram of the sensing, communication, and control systems associated with a typical power system

4.3 Road map for achieving secure control systems in the energy sector

5.1 Typical power industry employee age distribution

6.1 Protection and control system characteristics

6.2 Power system stability controls

6.3 Modern emergency management system

6.4 Balancing areas

6.5 Reliability coordinators

9.1 Diagrammatic means for estimating potential terrorist attack cost mitigation resulting from investment in R&D

9.2 Alternative ways in which power systems could evolve

9.3 Development path for the perfect power system

9.4 Evolution of possible configurations and relevant nodes of innovation enabling the power system

F.1 One-line diagram of main and transfer bus scheme

F.2 One-line diagram of breaker-and-a-half bus configuration

F.3 One-line diagram for ring bus configuration

F.4 One-line diagram of double breaker-double bus configuration

G.1 Power system stability controls

G.2 August 14, 2003, voltage profile from west to east across northern Ohio

G.3 August 14, 2003, reactive power production and reserves

BOXES

3.1 Security Criteria to Be Considered in Evaluating Substation Security

3.2 Examples of Security Protocols and Mitigation Measures Intended to Provide Protection Against Current Terrorist Threats

3.3 Steps Taken by Most U.S. Utilities to Limit Access to Facilities and Information

3.4 Examples of Technical Physical Security Skills and Practices Being Developed and Implemented by Electric Power Industry Security Personnel

4.1 Addressing Control System Vulnerabilities

8.1 The Pittsburgh Study

9.1 Questionnaire Respondents’ Views on General R&D Needs for the Power Delivery System Needed Specifically to Address Terrorism

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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Research Council. 2012. Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/12050.
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The electric power delivery system that carries electricity from large central generators to customers could be severely damaged by a small number of well-informed attackers. The system is inherently vulnerable because transmission lines may span hundreds of miles, and many key facilities are unguarded. This vulnerability is exacerbated by the fact that the power grid, most of which was originally designed to meet the needs of individual vertically integrated utilities, is being used to move power between regions to support the needs of competitive markets for power generation. Primarily because of ambiguities introduced as a result of recent restricting the of the industry and cost pressures from consumers and regulators, investment to strengthen and upgrade the grid has lagged, with the result that many parts of the bulk high-voltage system are heavily stressed.

Electric systems are not designed to withstand or quickly recover from damage inflicted simultaneously on multiple components. Such an attack could be carried out by knowledgeable attackers with little risk of detection or interdiction. Further well-planned and coordinated attacks by terrorists could leave the electric power system in a large region of the country at least partially disabled for a very long time. Although there are many examples of terrorist and military attacks on power systems elsewhere in the world, at the time of this study international terrorists have shown limited interest in attacking the U.S. power grid. However, that should not be a basis for complacency. Because all parts of the economy, as well as human health and welfare, depend on electricity, the results could be devastating.

Terrorism and the Electric Power Delivery System focuses on measures that could make the power delivery system less vulnerable to attacks, restore power faster after an attack, and make critical services less vulnerable while the delivery of conventional electric power has been disrupted.

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