In 2016, Newton-Evans Research Company completed a six-month research study and survey of protective relay usage patterns in the world community of electric power utilities. Findings from 114 large and mid-size utilities in 28 countries pointed to some newer trends in adoption and use of protection and control technology.
Among the key findings reported in the 2016 four-volume study were these:
- There was a receptive market for incorporating advanced technological capabilities.
- The role of synchrophasors and Teleprotection continued to expand; providing better situational awareness and visualization for control system operators.
- Most new and retrofit relay units being purchased were digital relays, but in some of the protection applications studied, such as motor protection and large generator applications, and in installations where electrical interference is strong, electro-mechanical and older solid state relays continued to have a niche market position.
- The annual world market for protective relays and related power systems protection devices continued to grow at a moderate pace that exceeded many other categories of electric utility investments for grid modernization.