Tonga Power’s networks were first built in the middle of the last century. The changes in control and communication technologies provide exciting opportunities to modernise the network, and build a truly “Smart Grid”. For example in most cases we do not know that power is off to a home until the customer calls us, with the smart grid technology available today we will be able to monitor the quality of supply to each home, and can get information of an outage sent out automatically.
Tonga Power is planning a phased implementation of the smart-grid, which commenced with a World Bank funded project that will install US$950,000 worth of infrastructure required to make the first step towards remote and automated switching in more remote areas. A fully developed smart grid will also enable optimising of the generation plant, manage losses and power quality, and enable customer demand side participation.