Hot weather and power outages continue

There are a few tens of thousand families at this time around the country who
wouldn't see any humor in this. Local to me, the problems that began eight days
ago in Queens NY persist to this day, and the best ETAs now being given by the
City and Con Ed is at least two more days. But that's what was projected last
Friday, or three days ago.

Some lawmakers in the affected districts are calling for the resignation of Con
Ed's CEO, while some blackout victims are calling for his imprisonment.

The article doesn't go far enough to inform the reader that many of the
"restored" residential and small business units that are holding their own (as
opposed to sputtering out within two hours, like many that were placed back onto
the grid) are being fed by a slew of portable truck-mounted generators that are
tied directly into the local low-voltage feeder networks going to customer

A report on CNN (IIRC) earlier today focused on a range of "hot-spots" around the
country, from Beverly Hills to St. Louis to New England, noting that for the most
part the electric power problems that are being encountered (as roads and rails
buckle from the heat) do NOT point to supply as much as they do to the inability
of distribution networks in the last mile to withstand the increased loads being
caused by mounting demand from air conditioning (and while no other application
was mentioned at that point, you've got to know what other drains on power went
through my mind).

As a society we've already taken ample note of the aging (in many instances,
crumbling) infrastructure, ranging from sewer systems, roads and rails, water
tunnels, bridges and so on that are still working decades beyond their time. Has
anyone given serious focus to the underspaces and overheads that house the
nation's last mile electrical distribution systems, in toto? If so, what does it
say about Queens' ability to handle summer loads?


Come on Sean, this "very few disruptions" stuff is below your usual
standards. The least you can do to help us pass the time in this damn heat
is to recount a few good stories about routers you could scramble eggs on.

there is a funny story of some dial devices on fire, and still passing

Frank A. Coluccio
DTI Consulting Inc.
212-587-8150 Office
347-526-6788 Mobile

20 - 30 years ago, Air Conditioning in a house was more of a luxury. For
us, it was a Swamp Cooler. Most new houses today are built with AC and
it is becoming standard practice to install them on older houses. So the
load on the system will only get worse if things start to heat up.

Back when Exodus was building a couple of Datacenters in Santa Clara,
the goal was to put a power generating plant right in the back yard of a
Datacenter, they even 'bought' the land:

While some Silicon Valley companies make noises about leaving the area,
Exodus recently announced plans to build its own onsite plant that it
hopes will supply power for several new IDCs.

Aging distribution plants are have caused lots of problems. We had an 18-hour power outage in Oakland (neighborhood just east of downtown Pittsburgh) about 10 days ago when two separate 25kV feeders from the local substation blew at the same time. Local utility crews ended up having to replace around 400' of fried underground feeder cable.

Our core sites are on redundant power, but in many cases this didn't include the chiller plant. Some of the rooms got hot, but we didn't lose any core equipment.

Other large organizations in the area were not so lucky.