Glossary of Terms

Sales

The amount of kilowatthours sold in a given period of time; usually grouped by classes of service, such as residential, commercial, industrial, and other. Other sales include public street and highway lighting, other sales to public authorities and railways, and interdepartmental sales.

Sales for Resale

Energy supplied to other electric utilities, cooperatives, municipalities, and Federal and State electric agencies for resale to ultimate consumers.

Scheduling Coordinators

Entities certified by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that act as a go-between with the Independent System Operator on behalf of generators, supply aggregators (wholesale marketers), retailers, and customers to schedule the distribution of electricity.

Scheduled Outage

The shutdown of a generating unit, transmission line, or other facility, for inspection or maintenance, in accordance with an advance schedule.

Securitization

A proposal for issuing bonds that would be used to buy down existing power contracts or other obligations. The bonds would be repaid by designating a portion of future customer bill payments. Customer bills would be lowered, since the cost of bond payments would be less than the power contract costs that would be avoided.

Securitize

The aggregation of contracts for the purchase of the power output from various energy projects into one pool which then offers shares for sale in the investment market. This strategy diversifies project risks from what they would be if each project were financed individually, thereby reducing the cost of financing. Fannie Mae performs such a function in the home mortgage market.

Short Ton

A unit of weight equal to 2,000 pounds.

Small Power Producer (SPP)

Under the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA), a small power production facility (or small power producer) generates electricity using waste, renewable (water, wind and solar), or geothermal energy as a primary energy source. Fossil fuels can be used, but renewable resource must provide at least 75 percent of the total energy input. (See Code of Federal Regulations, Title 18, Part 292.)

Spinning Reserve

That reserve generating capacity running at a zero load and synchronized to the electric system.

Spot Purchases

A single shipment of fuel or volumes of fuel, purchased for delivery within 1 year. Spot purchases are often made by a user to fulfill a certain portion of energy requirements, to meet unanticipated energy needs, or to take advantage of low-fuel prices.

Stability

The property of a system or element by virtue of which its output will ultimately attain a steady state. The amount of power that can be transferred from one machine to another following a disturbance. The stability of a power system is its ability to develop restoring forces equal to or greater than the disturbing forces so as to maintain a state of equilibrium.

Standard Industrial Classification (SIC)

A set of codes developed by the Office of Management and Budget, which categorizes business into groups with similar economic activities.

Standby Facility

A facility that supports a utility system and is generally running under no-load. It is available to replace or supplement a facility normally in service.

Standby Service

Support service that is available, as needed, to supplement a consumer, a utility system, or to another utility if a schedule or an agreement authorizes the transaction. The service is not regularly used.

Steam-Electric Plant (Conventional)

A plant in which the prime mover is a steam turbine. The steam used to drive the turbine is produced in a boiler where fossil fuels are burned.

Stocks

A supply of fuel accumulated for future use. This includes coal and fuel oil stocks at the plant site, in coal cars, tanks, or barges at the plant site, or at separate storage sites.

Stranded Benefits

Benefits associated with regulated retail electric service which may be at risk under open market retail competition. Examples are conservation programs, fuel diversity, reliability of supply, and tax revenues based on utility revenues.

Stranded Costs

Prudent costs incurred by a utility which may not be recoverable under market-based retail competition. Examples are undepreciated generating facilities, deferred costs, and long-term contract costs.

Subbituminous Coal

A coal whose properties range from those of lignite to those of bituminous coal and are used primarily as fuel for steam-electric power generation. It may be dull, dark brown to black, soft and crumbly at the lower end of the range, to bright, jet black, hard, and relatively strong at the upper end. Subbituminous coal contains 20 to 30 percent inherent moisture by weight. The heat content of subbituminous coal ranges from 17 to 24 million Btu per ton on a moist, mineral-matter-free basis. The heat content of subbituminous coal consumed in the United States averages 17 to 18 million Btu per ton, on the as-received basis (i.e., containing both inherent moisture and mineral matter).

Substation

Facility equipment that switches, changes, or regulates electric voltage.

Switching Station

Facility equipment used to tie together two or more electric circuits through switches. The switches are selectively arranged to permit a circuit to be disconnected, or to change the electric connection between the circuits.

System (Electric)

Physically connected generation, transmission, and distribution facilities operated as an integrated unit under one central management, or operating supervision.

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