IEEE Northern Canada PES/IAS Jt. Chapter


Archive for the ‘IAS/PES’ Category

Notice on People Changes

Friday, December 1st, 2017
Please be notified, effective January 1, 2018  a new board has been elected to the Northern Canada Section PES/IAS Jt. Chapter.
Position Name
Chair Colten Thurrott
Vice Chair Daniel Lang
Secretary Kelly Butz
Treasurer Piero Aquino-Meza
Thank you David Roth, Kyle Busby, Colten Thurrott for your dedication and chapter stewardship through 2016-2018 and congratulations to our in-coming 2018-2020 board.
Carl Lam, P.Eng, SMIEEE

2017 Annual General Meeting

Friday, November 3rd, 2017


It is our sincerest hope that you found the activities we planned this calendar year to benefit your professional career and development. The chapter is run by a group of dedicated volunteers that get personal growth from leadership opportunities and networking locally within Alberta, and broader, within IEEE as we serve the broader membership.

As an IEEE PES or IAS member, you’re invited to join us on Thursday, November 30th for our Annual General Meeting being held at NABI in St. Albert at 5:30 PM. Parking is free.

This year, we will be electing a new organizing committee for 2018-2020. If you are motivated, wish to network, or even want to take on a leadership role, please join us at our AGM.

To participate, registration is required so that we can get a reasonable head count as dinner is provided at no cost. Please indicate any diet sensitivities during registration.

For full details of the agenda, location, and registration please follow this link.

Grid Energy Storage: Policies and Applications

Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

Alberta established the regulatory framework for its electric system when generators and loads were clearly differentiated. Energy storage facilities are blurring those distinctions with their ability to rapidly switch between supplying electricity to the grid and withdrawing electricity from it. Requests to connect energy storage facilities to the transmission system have prompted the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) to examine the costs that should be attributed to energy storage facilities, the technical standards with which they must comply, and the rules under which they must operate. The AESO currently has initiatives underway to clarify and, where appropriate, develop tariff provisions, standards, and rules that apply to energy storage facilities. Although the existing regulatory framework provides some guidance, participants in Alberta’s electric industry can also contribute to the evolution of grid energy storage policy.


Energy Storage compensates for variations in generation within milliseconds and secures stable grid operation. Energy storage solutions make it possible to integrate an increasing amount of solar and wind power generation into distribution grids without the need for immediate extension. In addition to that, energy storage solutions ensure a self-sufficient and reliable energy supply in micro-grids with renewable generation. Energy-efficient processes are of the highest importance for industrial businesses in order to keep energy costs down and exceeding the maximum load only once can lead to incurring high costs. In addition to that, even the shortest interruption of energy supply can lead to a complete failure of production plants. The consequences can have an enormous impact on loss of quality, time, and finances.


The presentation will cover how Energy Storage solutions function as a modular system that combine cutting-edge power electronics for grid applications with high-performance lithium-ion batteries.

Outstanding Engineer Award 2017 Call for Nominations

Sunday, July 23rd, 2017

We are currently seeking nominations for the Northern Canada PES/IAS Outstanding Engineer of 2017 award. The award recognises the outstanding contribution of a local engineer to the power engineering profession, including, but not limited to:

– Outstanding technical contributions to the power engineering profession.

– Outstanding professional and leadership contributions to the power engineering profession

– Significant contributions to the local community representing the power engineering profession.

– Outstanding contributions in the area of power engineering education.

– Service to the Power & Energy Society and/or Industry Applications Society and/or IEEE.

PES allows giving out two OEA awards by categorising candidates in one of two categories:

  1. An IEEE PES member who is no longer an IEEE Young Professional (more than 15 years since university graduation)
  2. An IEEE PES member who is an IEEE Young Professional (15 years or less since university graduation)

To nominate your colleague(s) for this award please download and fill out the Nomination Form and send it us (details on the form) by September 18, 2017 by 5:00 PM. We will present the award at the Northern Canada Section IAS/PES event to held in November, 2017.

As per IEEE guidelines the winner needs to be both an IEEE and PES member in good standing and under the jurisdiction of the Northern Canada Section.

Distribution and Power Transformers up to 30 MVA

Sunday, July 9th, 2017

Northern Canada Section IAS-PES Chapter

Distribution and Power Transformers up to 30 MVA

Including facility tour at ABB Power Services (formerly PowerTran)

Lecturer: Mr. Guillermo Rodriguez, PES Distinguished Lecturer

This 3 day course (Sept 27-29) will provide a comprehensive overview of distribution and power transformers up to 30 MVA. The course will cover standards, theoretical, and practical aspects of transformers for several applications. The first day will also include a tour at ABB Power Services transformer shop.

Course Outline:

  1. Introduction – basic transformers theory
  2. Transformer Standards
  3. Pole mounted Transformers
  4. Underground Distribution
  5. Pad mounted Transformers
  6. Submersible Transformers
  7. Distribution Transformer Accessories
  8. Transformer Tests
  9. Dry Transformers
  10. Small Power transformers (up to 30 MVA)
  11. Transformer Loss evaluation
  12. Transformer Maintenance
  13. Why transformers fail?

Thank you for the thoughtful and positive feedback from our “graduates”.

Archived eNotice for a detailed course agenda.


Call for Presentations, Panel Discussions and Tutorials: 2018 ESTMP Workshop

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

The 2018 IEEE IAS Electrical Safety, Technical, Maintenance and Projects (ESTMP) Workshop takes place in Calgary, March 12-14, 2018.

The ESTMP Workshop provides a forum for exchanging and advancing industry knowledge in the areas of electrical safety, engineering, project optimization, maintenance and reliability of electrical systems. The Workshop is designed to share new and innovative concepts, best practices, successes and lessons learned that deliver value and stimulate innovation.

In addition to presentations, two panel discussions are planned, as well as half-day tutorials.  Potential topics include:
– Power system maintenance
– Project execution
– Safety
– Green Power
– Reliability in Design
Suggestions for other topics are welcome.

Printable Call for Presentations:

For more information, please visit:

Important Dates:
– Notice of intent to present – July 30, 2017
– Abstract of presentation due – September 30, 2017
– Notification of acceptance – October 15, 2017
– Draft Presentation due – December 15, 2017
– Final Presentation due – February 1, 2018

IEEE Recommended Practice for Motor Protection in Industrial and Commercial Power Systems: Overview and What’s New!

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017, 6:00 to 8:30pm, doors open at 5:30pm

IEEE Recommended Practice for Motor Protection in Industrial and Commercial Power Systems: Overview and What’s New!


Presented By: Lorraine K. Padden, PE and John A. Kay, C.E.T. 

Technical Seminar Abstract:

IEEE Std. 3004.8 covers the protection of motors used in industrial and commercial power systems. It is likely to be of greatest value to the power-oriented engineer with limited experience in the area of protection and control. It can also be an aid to all engineers responsible for the electrical design of industrial and commercial power systems. This recommended practice is an update to IEEE Std 242-2001 (Buff Book) chapter 10. A general update was made to the material from chapter 10 of the Buff Book. Material added or expanded includes details for reduced-voltage motor starting, recommended protection functions using multifunction motor protection relays for contactor controlled fused starters and breaker controlled starters along with single-line and three-line diagrams, adjustable speed drive applications, DC motor protection, motor bus transfer, partial discharge monitoring, and a detailed example of motor protection using a multifunction motor protection relay.

• A general overview will be presented highlighting the practical use of the recommended practice for selecting typical motor protection for low voltage and medium voltage motors.

• The use of multifunction motor protection relays is common place and the key setting differences will be highlighted for MV motors with contactor controlled fused starters vs. breaker controlled starters. Misapplication of protective settings can be detrimental to equipment and personnel.

• Protecting motors powered by Adjustable Speed Drives can be challenging. These challenges and recommended protection functions will be presented.

• Thought leaders in motor protection are identifying methods to detect motor problems prior to motor failure. These methods include vibration, winding temperature, on-line partial discharge, and others covered in the recommended practice.

• Information on reduced-voltage starting, motor bus transfer, applications in hazardous (classified) locations, and arc flash hazards for motors will be discussed.

Mak Hakim receiving the 2016 PES Outstanding Engineer Award from NCS Section chair Dr. Alex

U of A student branch co-chair receiving IEEE scholarship from Dr. Alex

Kelly presenting a token of appreciation to both Lorraine and John

Click here to download the presentation.

Click here to see the archived e-notice.

API 541 5th Edition – Understanding the Changes and Updates to the Petroleum Industry’s Premier AC Induction Motor Specification

Friday, April 7th, 2017

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017, 6:00 to 8:30pm, doors open at 5:30pm

API 541 5th Edition – Understanding the Changes and Updates to
the Petroleum Industry’s Premier AC Induction Motor Specification

Presented By: Bart Saur 

Concurrently, Tuesday, May 9th, 2017, 5:00 to 6:00pm

Guided tour of the University of Alberta’s District Energy System


Technical Seminar Abstract:

In December of 2014, the American Petroleum Institute (API) released its 5th Edition of the API Standard 541, Form-wound Squirrel Cage Induction Motors – 375 kW (500 Horsepower) and Larger specification. Since its first release as a recommended practice in 1972, API 541 has been commonly viewed as the premier specification for AC induction motors in the petroleum market.
This presentation will provide an overview of the API 541 specification starting with the content of the 4th Edition (which remains widely used in the industry), and then progressing to design, accessory and testing changes associated with the 5th Edition, before closing with a detailed look at the motor data sheet transformation. Questions will be welcomed throughout the seminar.


Bart accepting a token of appreciation from Blaine

Click to download the API 541 – IEEE-Edmonton presentation.

Click here for the archived e-notice.

Effects of Modern Variable Speed Drives on Motor Winding Insulation

Friday, March 17th, 2017

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017, 6:00 to 8:30pm, doors open at 5:30pm

Effects of Modern Variable Speed Drives on Motor Winding Insulation


Presented By: Blake Lloyd, P.Eng., F.IEEE, Past-president IAS 

IAS Distinguished Lecturer Technical Seminar Abstract:

For over 70 years, researchers have understood that fast rise-time voltage surges from a circuit breaker closing can lead to an electrical breakdown of the turn insulation in motor stator windings.  Rapid advances in power electronic components in the past decade have lead to a new source of voltage surges.  Inverter-fed drivers (IFDs) of the pulse width modulated (PWM) type that use insulated-gate bipolar junction transistors (IGBTs) can create tens of thousands of fast rise-time voltage surges per second.  Anecdotal evidence suggests that the large number of voltage surges from IFDs can lead to gradual deteriorations and eventual failure of the turn insulation—both in low voltage (less than 1,000V) and medium voltage (2.3 to 4.16kV) motors .  This presentation describes the characteristics of voltage source PWM drives Impact on random wound (LV) motor stators  as well as the impact on form wound (MV) stators.  It will also describe the relevant standards to qualify insulation systems for converter fed motors

Young Professional Opening Talk: Alberta`s Safety Code and Quality Management Plan

A high level view of how public safety is protected and the interfaces between engineering professionals and Alberta government Acts, Regulations, and processes.

Presented By: Carl Lam, P.Eng., M.IEEE, PES & IAS Chapter Chair 


Carl presents Blake with a token of appreciation


To download the presentation slides, please click here 

To view the archived event notice, please click here


“Variable Voltage Transformers for MV Heater Control” & “Power and Instrument Transformer Failures – Root Causes and Modern Methods Used to Mitigate Risk”

Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017, 6:00 to 8:30pm, doors open at 5:30pm

Wednesday Back-to-Back Technical Seminars

First Hour: “Variable Voltage Transformers for MV Heater Control”

Presented By: Timothy Bichler

Technical Seminar Abstract:

Power electronic devices are the standard solution for low voltage heater control, however, cost and harmonic issues are amplified for medium voltage heater applications. To provide a medium voltage alternative at significantly less cost, this paper details modifications and testing that evolved part range, load tap changing, voltage regulators into full range variable voltage transformers for medium voltage heater control. From the initial minor modifications that converted autotransformers into 16 tap isolation transformers, the development moves on to inclusion of secondary base windings that bring 32 taps into play for refined control. Three-phase solutions and addition of medium voltage interrupters from the utility industry round out an economical solution for stand-alone, medium voltage heater operation that avoids the harmonic issues of other heater control technologies.

Second Hour: “Power and Instrument Transformer Failures – Root Causes and Modern Methods Used to Mitigate Risk”

Presented By: Dr. Tamer Mellik and Scott Basinger

Technical Seminar Abstract:

This presentation will examine recent power and instrument transformer failures involving primary circuit switching. Risk factors including circuit breaker current chop /re-strike, system configurations, transformer characteristics as well as transient and ferroresonance effects that contributed to these equipment failures will be explained. This presentation will share experiences gained from fifty world-wide distribution system studies using EMTP and PSCAD transient analysis software. The presenter will describe actual equipment failure case studies (power transformers and voltage transformers) to illustrate root causes, simulations, field measurements, and recommended solutions that have proven successful in mitigating breaker switching transients. This seminar is directed to those EE professionals involved in the design, specification, implementation and protection of critical industrial power systems with inherent characteristics associated with switching transient events.

From left to right: Piero Aquino-Meza (IAS/PES volunteer), Tamer Mellik, Scott Basinger, Tim Bichler

To download the presentation slides, please click here

To view the archived event notice, please click here