tva logoTennessee Valley Authority

Voltage Optimization

Project Description

TVA proposes to promote a voltage optimization program with local power companies and directly-served customers that continuously optimizes distribution feeder voltages in the lower half of the ANSI standard voltage range (C84.1), thereby reducing energy consumption annually. TVA will incent local power companies to optimize end-of-line (EOL) distribution voltage by offsetting revenue losses with incentives paid based on measured reductions.

Voltage reduction will be typically accomplished by deploying Conservation Voltage Regulation (CVR) systems that leverage: EOL voltage monitoring, Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), and/or Volt/VAR Optimization. Distribution feeders that are primarily residential or small commercial are the most effective for CVR. It is estimated that the 15-year project that consists of 10-year contracts will produce approximately 4,671 billion KWh of energy savings.

In addition to incentives paid by TVA, the rate structure offers inherent financial benefits to operating CVR. TVA calculates that these inherent benefits to the local power companies can be up to $9,000 per distribution feeder per year. Incentives will also be used for directly-served customers to encourage optimization of end-of-line voltages to deliver energy savings.

Project Implementation

The project will begin by sending a Request for Interest (RFI) to all local power companies served by TVA. TVA will evaluate the responses with consideration given to:

  1. Local power companies’ desire to participate in the program.
  2. Local power companies with Load Tap Changing (LTC) transformers that control several distribution feeders, or local power companies that have voltage regulating transformers that control several distribution feeders.
  3. The duration of time required for a local power company to purchase, install, and place the CVR equipment in operation.
  4. Local power companies that can deliver the largest energy savings up to budget limitations per year.

TVA will contact the most qualified local power companies and secure a contract obligating both TVA and the qualified power company to certain specific requirements. Chiefly among these requirements, TVA will be obligated to pay the local power company financial incentives based on their monthly performance, and the local power company will be obligated to operate and maintain the CVR equipment for the contract period.

Once the system is installed and operating, TVA and the local power company will perform testing to determine the CVR impact. TVA will use data from the tests to determine the expected performance of the system and the appropriate payments.

Project Milestones Dates*
Develop RFI contract 45 days after approval
Submit RFI to local power companies 60 days after approval
Receive RFI responses 90 days after approval
Evaluate RFI responses Spring 2013
Contact most eligible local power companies Spring 2013
Evaluate local power companies and determine participants Summer 2013
Local power companies to purchase & install CVR equipment Fall 2013
CVR equipment installation complete & testing begins; CVR equipment to be enabled, tested, and validated Winter 2013 to fall 2014

* Dates are tentative and subject to change

EPA Agreement Five-Year Budget

$30 to $60 million



Contact Information


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