Online Learning: Learning Paths

Electric System Fundamentals

Length: 4.5 hours
Subscription: 2 months - 12 months
Cost: $295 - $350
Prerequisites: None

This Electric System Fundamentals online course bundle focuses on the physical electrical system and takes learners on a tour from generator to customer meter. It seeks to help learners answer the question “What is the electrical power system and how does it work?” Topics covered include common industry jargon and the basic physical laws of electricity, how generators work, which generation types are commonly used and why, how a system of generators is used to serve a customer load curve, the components that make up transmission and distribution systems, how transmission and distribution systems are designed and operated, the different types of service configurations and when they are used, and how electricity is metered.

This course comprises the following modules:

  • Introduction
  • Basic Concepts of Electricity
  • Generating Electricity
  • The Electrical Transmission System
  • The Electrical Distribution System
  • Electrical Services
  • Electric Meters and Metering

Following is a more detailed outline of content contained in the Electric System Fundamentals online course.

Basic Concepts of Electricity

  • What is electricity?
  • Direct current (DC)
  • Alternating current (AC)
  • Conductors
  • Insulators
  • Electrical terms and units (voltage, current/amps, resistance/ohms, frequency/hertz, real power/watts, apparent power/volt-amps, reactive power/volt-amps reactive, power factor)
  • Resistive, inductive and capacitive loads
  • Energy (kWh, MWh) and Demand (kW, MW)
  • Watt’s Law
  • Ohm’s Law
  • Circuits and circuit components (source, path, load, control devices, and protective devices)
  • Overview of the electric delivery system

Generating Electricity

  • Key quantities used in discussing generation (rated capacity, output, capacity factor, voltage, and frequency)
  • Methods for creating electricity (electromagnetic induction, electrochemistry, photoelectric effect)
  • Key generation technologies (photovoltaic cells, fuel cells, batteries, turbines, reciprocating engines)
  • Key generation fuels (renewables, nuclear, coal, natural gas, oil, hydro)
  • Centralized vs. distributed generation
  • How generators work (steam turbine, combustion turbine, combined-cycle turbine, coal gasification (IGCC) turbine, water turbine, wind turbine, photovoltaic cells, reciprocating genset, fuel cells and batteries)
  • Combined heat and power (CHP)
  • Overview of physical, financial and environmental characteristics of each generation type
  • Generation costs (capital, fixed and variable)
  • The generation dispatch stack and how dispatch decisions are made

The Electric Transmission System

  • The role of transmission
  • Overview of the transmission system layout
  • What transformers do and how they work
  • Station transformers
  • Switchyards (switches, breakers, transformers, busbar)
  • Transmission lines
  • Transmission substations
  • Monitoring and metering equipment
  • Protective equipment (circuit breakers, fuses, switches)
  • How a transmission system is configured
  • North American power grids
  • How the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) sets standards for reliable operation
  • The role of FERC in overseeing reliability
  • The role of the transmission owner (TO) and entities that are TOs
  • The role of the system operator and entities that are system operators
  • Which regions of North America operate under ISOs/RTOs

The Electric Distribution System

  • The role of distribution
  • Overview of the distribution system layout
  • Distribution substations
  • Distribution lines (overhead and underground, single phase and three phase, wye and delta)
  • Advantage and disadvantages of each distribution line option
  • Other distribution components (lightning arrestors, voltage regulators, line and service fuses, reclosers, capacitor banks)
  • System design (how primary and secondary feeds are used and laid out)
  • Types of secondary feeds (radial, dual feed, loop and network)
  • How systems are designed to balance cost and reliability objectives
  • Service transformers

Electrical Services

  • The role of services
  • Overview of how a service is laid out
  • Overhead and underground services
  • Single phase and three phase services
  • Wye and delta services
  • Service voltages (transmission, primary and secondary)
  • Service components (service conductors, meter loop, meter, ground wire/rod, main disconnect, breaker/fuse box)
  • Circuits (feeder and branch)
  • Designing services to adequately match a specific customer load

Electric Meters and Metering

  • The role of metering
  • Categories of meters
  • Single-phase vs. three-phase meters
  • Operating technologies (induction, solid state, hybrid)
  • Data communication (manual vs. remote)
  • Automated meter reading (AMR)
  • Smart meters
  • Registers (energy, time-of-use, demand, solid state)
  • Net meters
  • Transmission, primary and secondary meters
  • Installation types (self contained vs. transformer rated)
  • Master and sub-meters
  • Current transformers (CTs) and potential transformers (PTs)
  • Meter operations and management
  • Regulatory requirements
  • Accuracy and testing
  • Diversion and tampering

Contact us at 866-765-5432 or e-mail for more information.

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