WAPA offers exciting careers in a variety of fields including:
Estimates firm energy load requirements based on current trends, weather forecasts and historical data. Coordinates with regional independent system operators to establish schedules and relieve transmission constraints through transmission loading relief or re-dispatch of generating units. Makes bulk electricity purchases or sales to balance fossil, hydro, and wind generation resources against loads within a defined geographic region, while adhering to environmental constraints and defined river release criteria. Takes advantage of hydro/thermal integration to maximize resources and revenue requirements, keeping adequate reserve margins to ensure reliable control area and transmission system operation. Function is staffed round-the-clock.
Using real-time computer systems and communication networks, monitors, maintains and manages the transmission, distribution and interchange of electric power and energy within an assigned geographic area of Western’s high voltage power grid. Coordinates with customers, neighboring utilities, regional independent system operators and reliability coordinators to establish schedules and relieve transmission constraints using congestion management tools or re-dispatching generating units. Directs switching operations, isolating and restoring faulted equipment. Responds to power system emergencies resulting from the loss of resources or transmission equipment and restores service to customers. Function is staffed round-the-clock by NERC-certified operators.
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Provides electrical engineering services for Western’s high-voltage transmission system. Generally specializes in one or more technical areas, including:
- Designing engineering additions, replacements and modifications to equipment and facilities.
- Performing all aspects of project management, including planning, overall approach, and scheduling of resources and material to ensure all parts of a project fit together and making necessary changes in the project schedule to accomplish the task.
- Providing field engineering for predictive and preventative maintenance programs, troubleshooting, facility enhancements and operations support.
- Planning and designing transmission facilities, such as substations and transmission lines.
- Conducting studies associated with all phases of the power system.
Provides electronic engineering associated with communication systems, including Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition systems. Ensures communication systems are adequate and operate correctly; investigates and reports on system performance and develops corrective actions for improper performance; studies communications systems for enhancements, additions or modifications; and reviews proposed changes or additions.
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Career opportunities include:
- Developing and implementing power marketing plans and policies following existing laws and regulations to distribute a finite resource within a Federal project.
- Analyzing and evaluating costs and designing rates that will recover costs assigned to a power project and developing and implementing rates in a public process involving Western employees, external customers, other Federal agencies and interested parties.
- Reviewing and implementing Federal policies and power marketing plans and criteria and developing contracts to sell power and/or ancillary services to wholesale customers.
- Using contract provisions, rate schedules and computing tools to develop and issue monthly bills to power and transmission customers.
- Preparing schedules for energy and transmission, completing energy settlement transactions and planning and managing a variety of projects.
Western offers careers in several Information Technology areas including:
- Cyber Security—Ensures confidentiality, integrity and availability of systems, networks and data by planning, analyzing, developing, implementing, maintaining and enhancing information systems security programs, policies, procedures and tools.
- Network Services—Plans, analyzes, designs, develops, tests, assures quality, configures, installs, implements, integrates, maintains and/or manages networked systems used to transmit information in voice, data and/or video format.
- System Administration—Plans and coordinates the installation, testing, operation, troubleshooting and maintenance of hardware and software systems.
- Data Management—Plans, develops, implements and administers systems to acquire, store and retrieve data.
- System Analysis—Applies analytical processes to plan, design and implement new and improved information systems to meet the business requirements of customer organizations.
- Application Software—Designs, documents, develops, modifies, tests, installs, implements and supports new or existing applications software.
- Internet Service—Plans, designs, develops, tests, implements and manages Internet, intranet and extranet applications, including systems/application development and technical management of Web sites.
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Maintains, repairs and tests power system metering, control, protective and recording equipment attached to the high-voltage transmission system. Checks out and places new facilities and additions to existing facilities in service.
Installs, maintains, repairs, tests, aligns, modifies, overhauls and troubleshoots communications equipment, control process computers and peripheral equipment, and/or supervisory control equipment, including automatic generation control equipment, supervisory control equipment and supervisory control and data acquisition systems. Installs, maintains, repairs, tests, aligns, modifies and troubleshoots VHF, UHF, microwave and fiber optic (voice and data) communications equipment, digital and analog telemetering equipment, surveillance equipment, telephone systems, multiplexors and towers, waveguide and coaxial cable and antennae.
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Maintains high-voltage (69-kV to 500-kV) transmission lines by replacing components (poles, cross arms, insulators, hardware, etc.) under de-energized or energized (hot stick and/or live line bare hand) conditions. Troubleshoots and repairs transmission line structures, often after storms. Assists with substation construction and/or maintenance activities. Assists with maintaining communication system equipment by repairing/replacing antennas or jumpers or re-lamping aerial warning lights. Erects transmission and distribution structures (steel or wood poles or steel lattice towers) and pulls conductor and overhead ground wires (including optical ground wire). Inspects electrical power lines and transmission line structures, including steel towers and wood poles, from vehicles, on foot or from aircraft.
Installs, operates, troubleshoots and repairs high-voltage (69- to 500-kV) electrical equipment including transformers, circuit breakers, current transformers, potential transformers and switches. Installs, troubleshoots and repairs lower voltage AC and DC power and control systems (including station batteries) and station grounding systems. Installs exterior and interior wiring and troubleshoots problems, using wiring diagrams, schematic diagrams, control board layout drawings and manufacturer’s manuals and/or instructions.
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