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#138775 09/28/03 12:18 AM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,691
SvenNYC Offline OP
According to Italy's national grid operators, a cable between France and Italy broke. Plunged the entire country into darkness.

#138776 09/28/03 02:36 AM
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,432
Likes: 3
That must have been one helluva cable break, if it took out a whole country.
Surely Italy is fed from more than one source?.
Is the feed Overhead?.
Just wondering.

#138777 09/28/03 06:12 AM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,392
no doubt the diplomats will need a special luncheon now....

#138778 09/28/03 06:54 AM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
I guess everyone is going to want blackouts now, so as not to feel left out!

I would assume that they don't rely on France for all their power, so was it another cascade effect as staion after station shut down with the increased load?

#138779 09/28/03 11:23 AM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,498
Guess it's time to look for a generator now... [Linked Image] I could always set it up in the garden and run a long cord through my window to power the most important items such as CH boiler, refrigerator and most of all computer...
Seriously, I read a newspaper article where the links between France and Italy were considered the most critical links in the European grid. Italy relies on them as they import about 70% of their power. They even feared the entire network could collapse, fortunately only Italy seems to be affected. I think some small areas near the border also import power from Austria, but not much.

#138780 09/28/03 11:26 AM
Joined: Aug 2003
Posts: 1,374
Texas_Ranger...I've got to ask. How did you come up with your screen name? I notice that you live in Vienna, are you from the states?

Ryan Jackson,
Salt Lake City
#138781 09/28/03 02:51 PM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 1,253
djk Offline
I wonder if all these incidents have something in common?

Are people just using way more power all of a sudden?

Warns of exactly this situation occuring in italy due to undercapacity.

[This message has been edited by djk (edited 09-28-2003).]

#138782 09/28/03 03:20 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 382
I wonder if all these incidents have something in common?

Bean-counters I suspect. They are the same the whole world over, have risen greatly in influence within businesses over the past 15 years and abhor overcapacity. Everything is for the short term benefit of the shareholders and when that little extra capacity is required, either by demand or local failure, the system fails catastrophically. In the case of electrical utilities, their failures are dramatically obvious to all, coupled with the daisy-chain collapse that seems inherent in these systems. I wonder how much this little lot cost ? - plus NE US, Gtr London, Denmark-Sweden?

#138783 09/28/03 03:58 PM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 1,253
djk Offline
The EU rush to deregulate power industries has also caused a few problems.

For example in Ireland, ESB is a state owned company which has happily been supplying good quality service at a very compeditive price since 1927 when a nationalised power system was setup aimed at boosting the economy, helping industry and raising living standards etc.

It was a monopoly supplier. However, as a semi-state company it didn't really behave as a commercial monopoly, like for example Microsoft does. It was founded on the basis of public service not to squeeze every last drop of profit out of the network and its customers as possible.

When deregulation came into vogue in Ireland legislation was passed which effectively prevented the ESB from expanding their generating capacity by either augmenting exsisting plants or going ahead with planned new plants. This was because as the former monopoly supplier and as they had a very high market share they were not allowed to increase it further. However, the private companies that came in did not manage to get large enough plants on stream fast enough to keep the network at a comfortable capacity. The result was that due to rapid growth in electry consumption coupled with the fact that the ESB was legally hog tied that the network has come very close on a few occasions to exceeding capacity.

Emergency measures had to be implemented on a number of occasions e.g. ESB had to hire generator ships and moor them in harbours around the country to augment supply.

Legislation was also passed in breech of EU directives to allow the ESB to fill the gap by expanding power plants as it would be extremely damaging to the Irish economy if we had power failures, much more so than having the ESB remain the dominant player in the market.

ESB's a weird company in some ways. It tends to do everything in-house including fully designing their own power plants and network using a subsiduary ESBI. Stranger still, they're actually designing plants for their compeditors!

I think we have to really think about how electricity is supplied. As a resource it's almost as important as Air and Water! A power failure could cripple a country and cause tens of millions of Euro/dollar/pounds/yen of damage.

[This message has been edited by djk (edited 09-28-2003).]

#138784 09/28/03 04:27 PM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,498
No, I've never been to Texas. But my first name is Ragnar (scandinavian name), many people think it is spelled Ragner (Okay, I hate them for it, but you can't do more than tell them) and everybody here knows the TV series "Walker Texas Ranger". So one of my classmates invented that nickname. Some people who just know me as Ranger even think it has something to do with Power Rangers :MAD:
The only place in the US I've ever been to is NYC (a 10 days school exchange with a public High School from Brooklyn).

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