Posts Tagged ‘Hurricane Forecasting Models’

Improving Power Recoveries After Major Storms

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

Researchers have developed a computer model that may predict power failures prior to major storms, which insight may allow for better facilities planning for the benefit of consumers. Geography professors Seth Guikema of Johns Hopkins University and Steven Quiring of Texas A&M University examined data from five hurricanes that caused power losses, some for more than ten days: Dennis (1995), Danny (1997), Georges (1998), Ivan (2004) and Katrina (2005). They considered the locations of the power failures, the configurations of the power systems and the specific characteristics of the individual hurricanes, such as wind speeds. They believe that the data they have collected result in a model to improve the accuracy of predicted power failures, allowing utility companies to better utilize resources in advance of a storm with crews assigned to the areas likely to be affected. More accurate forecasts can reduce the millions of dollars utility companies pay in power restoration to the benefit of the hundreds of thousands of affected residents and businesses. With hurricane season just around the corner, small businesses located in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast states should ask their utility providers for specific details of their contingency plans for major storms. Make sure that your electricity and gas providers are aware of this research, it could make a difference to your business.