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IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) Signs Memorandum of Understanding with Consumers Energy to Provide Synchrophasor Conformance Testing

IEEE, the world's largest professional organization dedicated to advancing technology for humanity, today announced that the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Michigan-based Consumers Energy. The MoU supports development of a synchrophasor conformity assessment program to provide testing of phasor measurement units’ (PMUs’) compliance with respect to IEEE C37.118.1™ “Standard for Synchrophasor Measurements for Power Systems.” Synchrophasors provide real-time measurement of electric power grids to help ensure stable operations and avert blackouts.

“The signing of this memorandum with Consumers Energy represents a significant milestone toward the establishment of a synchrophasor conformity assessment program. Consumers Energy’s experience and technical acumen were consistent with the demands and goals of this industry-supported synchrophasor conformity assessment testing program,” said Konstantinos Karachalios, managing director, IEEE-SA. “One way the IEEE-SA supports industry stakeholders throughout the standards lifecycle, even beyond development of a standard, is with the IEEE Conformity Assessment Program (ICAP) and its globally recognized testing and certification that drive accelerated deployment of products based on IEEE standards.”

Measurements recorded by synchrophasors include power flows, voltages, frequency and phase angle. The North American Synchrophasor Initiative (NASPI) Report of Task Force on Testing and Certification Final Report strongly recommends that users of synchrophasor measurements require that the PMUs producing the measurements be certified compliant with IEEE C37.118.1.

“The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been a contributor to the development of IEEE C37.118.1 standard and the synchrophasor Test Suite Specification (TSS),” commented Gerald FitzPatrick, group leader, Quantum Measurement Division, NIST. “NIST strongly supports the establishment of the ICAP program for PMU testing and certification. This synchrophasor certification program, adopting the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel’s (SGIP’s) Interoperability Process Reference Manual (IPRM), will advance our goals to support a resilient grid that can accommodate high penetration of renewable resources and yet maintain high reliability.”

Synchrophasor technology enables power system operators to accurately model and predict electrical deviations in the power grid, and manufacturers are quickly developing cost-effective PMU products to address this issue. The development of a test methodology based on the IEEE C37.118.1 standard, TSS, is intended to assure the PMU’s claim of compliance to the standard. The TSS was drafted by the Synchrophasor Conformity Assessment Steering Committee (SCASC), which is comprised of technical experts from the power grid industry. The primary role of the SCASC is to provide technical direction and guidance on the program construction.

“Key stakeholders such as utilities and manufacturers recognize and support the need for an industry-recognized PMU conformity testing process,” commented Robert Sawyer, department head, laboratory spokesperson, Consumers Energy. “We welcome the opportunity to collaborate in this program, and believe we can meet and deliver the services as required by this evolving market.”

ICAP will provide program management oversight, in addition to the development of policies and procedures that govern the operational characteristics of a certification program. ICAP ( is a program of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organization (IEEE-ISTO). For further information on the syncrophasor conformity assessment program, contact ICAP via email at [email protected].

To learn more about IEEE-SA, visit us on Facebook at, follow us on Twitter at, connect with us on LinkedIn at or on the Standards Insight Blog at

About the IEEE Standards Association

The IEEE Standards Association, a globally recognized standards-setting body within IEEE, develops consensus standards through an open process that engages industry and brings together a broad stakeholder community. IEEE standards set specifications and best practices based on current scientific and technological knowledge. The IEEE-SA has a portfolio of over 900 active standards and more than 500 standards under development. For more information visit

About IEEE

IEEE, a large, global technical professional organization, is dedicated to advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Through its highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities, IEEE is the trusted voice on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Learn more at

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