Services

DAI can supply a full range of utility project planning, development, and design services. Years of utility project experience, coupled with computer aided design, places DAI at the leading edge in the power field. Our design capabilities are enhanced with an impressive library of engineering software.

Our power systems analysis capability is founded in our depth of experience in load management, load growth, and system reliability assessment. This experience gives DAI the insight and ability for equipment specification, fault analysis, system protection coordination, power factor correction, and voltage studies. From these capabilities flow our expertise in substation, transmission, distribution, and SCADA design.

Implementation of design concepts into operational facilities is provided through our many years of experience in construction site planning and engineering. Stormwater and erosion control as well as thorough environmental assessment are factored into each project. Appropriate foundation types are chosen to solve a variety of site condition problems. This, coupled with DAI's wide-range knowledge of structural engineering, ensures that electrical facilities will be designed well. This is DAI's commitment to the power industry and to you.

DAI realizes that with all of the expectations and demands being placed on utility managers as a result of the continuing challenges in the utility industry, there are times when additional outside assistance becomes necessary. Issues may arise that a manager may not have time to address or which demand that an outside independent analysis be developed or professional opinion given. DAI can provide a broad range of support and assistance to managers in reviewing the policies, procedures, methods and general duties involved with managing a utility system. Inherent in DAI's 'partnership for success' approach, such services are always provided with close coordination to ensure that current business philosophies and requirements are sustained and supported. These professional management services include the following:

Operational Support
Power Supply Negotiations
Contract Negotiations
Financial Reviews
Rules & Regulations Reviews and Updates
Inventory Control
Job Order Review & Development
Program Development
Safety
Education

Staffing Reviews
Staffing Strength
Organizational Structuring
Job Descriptions
Compensation Analyses

Customer Service Reviews
Billing Procedures
Customer Service Policies
Collection Methods
Consolidation of Services

From the most basic request to the largest intensive review, DAI can provide complete support and assistance to meet the needs of utilities that are giving their best possible effort to provide the finest and most comprehensive service to their customers.

DAI is a member of PJM and is actively working to represent the interests of public power. PJM is diligently working to formulate new business and marketing rules and revise existing rules to make deregulated power supply more economical and reliable. PJM has an ever expanding region of influence that ranges from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mid-West. PJM encourages membership and involvement by public power and gives them voting status in the rulemaking process. PJM values input from public power utilities to help formulate fair and effective rules that will be used to govern deregulated power supply for many decades to come.

In order to represent public power clients, DAI is a member of the following PJM Committees:

Members Committee
Markets and Reliability Committee
Planning Committee
Markets Implementation Committee

In order to provide direct input on critical rulemaking that directly impacts public power, DAI has participated in the following working groups:

Open Access Transmission Tariff (OATT) Development Stakeholder Process
Intermittent Capacity Working Group
Behind-the-Meter Generation Working Group
Long-term Financial Transmission Rights Working Group

DAI monitors the following issues that greatly affect public power utilities:

Load Issues
Generation Issues
Demand Side Management Issues: (ALM) Load Drop, Load Management

PJM membership provides DAI with a continuous stream of information regarding the constantly changing deregulated power supply environment. This PJM information is utilized to help provide our clients with the best advice possible to aid in their power system planning.
From rate development to power supply economics, to provide viability assessment, DAI provides a broad spectrum of services through its Power and Financial Services division. Complex energy issues are addressed by experienced professionals ranging from MBA's to modeling specialists.

The ongoing deregulation and restructuring of the electric industry in the United States is proving to be an extremely complex process filled with risks and challenges. However, there are also numerous opportunities for benefits and growth. Based on many years of participation in the deregulation process, DAI assists numerous wholesale purchasers, energy associations, governments, and industries regarding state and federal deregulation issues.

DAI assists managers and policy makers in the analysis of their electrical load characteristics. Power supply opportunities can be maximized by actively participating in deregulated power supply markets. Our deregulation specialists have also worked with clients to preserve their existing rights during the development of major state restructuring legislation. Not since the birth of the electric industry in the 1880s has such rights advocacy been so fundamentally critical. The industry paradigm is in significant transition and DAI can help you navigate these perilous times.

DAI performs cost-of-service analyses for utilities. We are equipped to provide interruptible, controllable, and numerous other standard rate strategies, as well as creative and innovative approaches to rate design for the benefit of utilities and ratepayers alike. Metering data can be collected in computer ready format for plotting, graphing, and analysis. These can be important tools for planning and cost mitigation as well as for customer and load response development.

DAI can assist utilities as well as end users in adhering to the various regulatory and legislation requirements. From expert testimony at Public Service Commissions to Engineering Certification of financial stability, and everything in between, DAI can help you.

Market Research and Analyses
Hourly marginal pricing
Congestion costs and underlying fundamentals
Transmission tariff rates and costs
Market rules, requirements, and implications
Cost mitigation strategies and programs

Budgets and Forecasting
Assistance with development of annual financial budgets
Review and evaluation of performance indicators and measures
Capital budget development and schedule implementation
Power supply cost forecasts and monitoring
Revenue forecasts and normalization
Bonding/financing support and representation

Project Evaluation and Sensitivity Analyses
Capital cost quantification and present value development
Cost and revenue performance over project life
Sensitivity analyses for project cost/revenue drivers
Probability assessment of risk/reward
Representation before stakeholder groups and governmental agencies

Expert Representation and Financial Testimony
Power supply contract development and negotiation
Testimony before federal, state, and local government
Project Certification and support
Representation and advocacy for market business rules and development

Retail Rate Cost to Serve and Design
Verification and reconciliation of data, revenue, expenses
Development of cost to serve
Allocation, functionalization and classification of costs and expenses
Standard and innovative rate design
Development of programs for cost mitigation and value

Strategic Planning
Five year financial planning and forecasting
Capital financing and scheduling
Alternatives analyses
Integrated Resource Planning

DAI is equipped to provide services tailored to your specific needs and requirements. The flexibility of an ala cart of services allows you the option to request single scope projects that fulfill a specific need or, like many DAI clients, develop relationships that span decades of strategic planning and development services over multiple years. The choice is yours.

The Power and Financial Services division utilizes a cross functional process that focuses, not only on power and financial issues but also integrates significant business, engineering, and technical expertise into all projects. Integration of these services allows DAI to provide additional insight and clarity to all projects.
DAI has provided critical inspection, testing, and checkout services for utilities and industries. The ability of the DAI technical staff to perform total startup and acceptance testing has made DAI highly regarded throughout the power industry.

DAI has installed, tested, and maintained a wide range of metering, relaying, and communications equipment as well as generator controls. Ongoing programs are established to routinely inspect, test, and maintain all types of electrical and electronic equipment. Our modern test and calibration equipment is verified to ASTM standards at regular intervals. DAI is listed as an approved Electric Meter Test Shop by the Maryland Public Service Commission.

          Generation and Distribution Substation Relay Testing
          On-site Troubleshooting of Substation Equipment and Control Problems
          Start-up and Commissioning of New Substations
          KWH Meter Programming, Calibration and Testing
          Transformer Testing: Power Factor; Megger TTR; Bushing Tests
          Insulating Fluid Diagnostics: Transformer; Tap Changer; OCB; Voltage Regulator
          High Potential Testing: Cables; Bus Work
          Power Quality and Load Surveys and Analysis
          Ground System Resistance
          Power Circuit Breaker Tests: SF6; Vacuum; Oil; Air
          Voltage Regulator Tests
          SCADA Installation/Upgrades, Tests
          Design and Install Relay Retrofit Upgrades
          Infrared Survey of Energized Substation Equipment
          Battery System Testing and Maintenance

Our technical service employees are highly trained and qualified in all aspects of installing, maintaining, trouble-shooting and repairing a vast array of electrical equipment, be it high voltage, low voltage or a combination of thereof.

Whether your needs are large or small DAI is ready to provide these services and many similar other types of assistance in a timely and professional manner.
Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) is revolutionizing the way utilities operate. With recent advances in technology, it is now possible for even the smallest utilities to have total centralized control over their systems. DAI has specified, installed, programmed, tested, and maintained economical SCADA systems for progressive electric, water, and waste water systems.

Gone are the days when crews would have to 'ride the lines' looking for the cause of trouble calls. With a properly designed SCADA system, a system operator can immediately pinpoint troubles and dispatch repair crews to the site of system problems. Often, utility management will know the location and type of problem on the system before the phone even rings.

DAI programs enhanced features into each electric SCADA system to control breakers and tie switches to allow ease of load transfers from one feeder or substation to another. Utility managers can now know the exact configuration and operational status of the system at all times.

For municipal water systems, DAI has programmed enhancements into SCADA control systems to allow utilities to keep their water towers filled at proper levels no matter what the season or how many wells and water towers are on the system. Pumping cycles, well drawdowns, and gallons pumped can be recorded and reports generated.

For waste water systems, the operation of pumps and liquid levels at lift stations can be monitored. Duty cycles on pumps can be balanced. Access to each pump or lift station can be monitored and strictly controlled.
As electric power loads and delivery system stresses increase, Regional Transmission Organizations (RTO) and national reliability counsels are developing major improvements to the transmission systems within the control areas. Investor-owned utilities, electric cooperatives, and municipal electric systems will be required to complete major transmission system improvements in order to accomplish future mandates resulting from current planning. Transmission system alterations may result in overloading the in-house engineering and design teams of many utilities. If this happens to you, let DAI provide you with expert engineering and design services.

In order to meet your projects design, budgetary, and time requirements, our experienced team of engineers and designers utilize software such as:

          Power Line System products (PLS-CADD, TOWER, PLS-POLE, SAGSEC, SAPS,
                CAISSON)
          Autodesk products (AutoCAD, Civil 3D, Raster Design)
          MicroStation products (Ver. 8 Edition /w Bentley Architecture, Structural and Building
                                                                                     Mechanical Systems)

DAI engineers have successfully designed transmission and distribution lines utilizing tubular steel poles, pre-stressed concrete poles, and wood poles. Our transmission and distribution projects require us to perform project tasks such as:

          Project Planning and Scheduling
          Routing Design
          Environmental Studies
          Right-of-Way Acquisition
          Pole Construction Details
          Material List Development
          Material Procurement
          Construction Specifications
          Construction Management

You may not require a total design. If there is one or more particular aspects of your transmission/distribution project that your staff feels would benefit from specialized expertise or additional resources, contact DAI. We will furnish a professional engineer, designer, or team experienced in the design task you are planning.

          Distribution System Review and Planning. 
          Site Selection, Planning and Permitting. 
          Preliminary Project Layout and Design. 
          Project Schedules and Budgets. 
          Structure and Equipment Layout Design. 
          Bus Design.
          Grounding System Design and Soil Resistivity Testing. 
          Detailed Specification for Material, Equipment and Construction. 
          Control and Relay Design, Specification and Setting Development. 
          SCADA and Communications Design, Integration and Testing. 
          Metering System Design.
          Capacitor VAR Support and Design. 
          IPP Interconnection Projects. 
          Distributed and Peak Shaving Generation Interconnection. 
          Substation Project Construction Management. 
          Project Startup and Commissioning. 
          Project Record Documentation.
          Substation Operational Training.

DAI has planned and designed numerous electrical substations for municipals and cooperatives. We excel in providing total design packages.

Our total design package begins with an assessment of the Owner's needs and ends with the final checkout of all the substation equipment. We are experienced in working alongside your staff complimenting their abilities to complete the desired goal on time and within budgetary constraints. Working closely with your staff provides for a cost effective design solution, while also developing additional capabilities for your staff.

Maybe you don't need a total design plan. If there are particular aspects of your substation project that would benefit from specialized expertise or additional resources, contact DAI. Always remember no project-related task is unimportant or too small. Each task is an integral link in the chain, and the total success of any project depends on successful completion of each project task.
Additional Questions?
We are here through every step of the process, including the information gathering stage. In fact, we understand this to be one of the most important aspects of locating a consultant capable of handling your project.

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