Welcome to the inaugural issue of PACworld

I suspect many of you might question another industry magazine in the age of information overflow. And you are right. There is information overflow. But what I am talking about is not just information -it is communications. It is discussions and exchange of ideas.

I remember many years ago, when I was in collage and later making my first steps as a protection engineer in a small country behind the "Iron Curtain",  and was trying to keep up with what is going on around the world - my only window was the IEEE Transactions. So I will go to the library, find the latest issue and look for papers on protection or power system control. At the time the papers were followed by comments or questions from industry experts on the subject and the author's response at the end. What I liked to do, was first to read the comments and closing remarks and then the paper. The discussion was helping me concentrate on the key issues not just based on the opinion of the authors, but also on the usually different point of view of the experts providing the comments. Such discussions do not exist any more in the Transactions. Unfortunately, they are very limited and sometimes completely missing even at the different conferences. And this is making it difficult, especially for engineers with little experience, to reach a conclusion regarding the ideas presented in a paper.

I have been thinking about this for many years, while reading articles or listening to papers at conferences. And when being cut-off  while trying to initiate a discussion - lack of time is the usual argument. So when I was asked if I would be interested in starting an independent magazine, focused on the issues of our protection, automation and control world, I couldn't resist it. There is no such magazine anywhere in the world and we really need it. We have witnessed the electric power industry go through significant changes: corporate restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, downsizing, loss of expertise, and technological advancements. In order to not only survive in this ever-changing environment, but to achieve the best results possible, we, as an industry, need to speak up and talk about the issues of today, the past and the future. We need to learn from our mistakes and successes, and to build a community that will help each individual become a better professional and a better person.

So far some of this has been possible to achieve through local and international conferences, as well as in the working groups of international organizations, such as IEC, CIGRE and IEEE. The problem is that the participation in such activities is very limited and even in the case of international conferences it is dominated by local attendance. Since the number of conferences dedicated to power system protection, automation and control is very small, the number of papers discussing issues applicable to power system technology is very limited. And, we have all been to a conference presentation where there just isn't enough time for detailed discussions that may result in the clarification and conclusion of the topics addressed in the papers.

At the same time, the efforts of many working groups produce important reports that can help protection, automation and control professionals around the world in doing a better job. However, the fact that such reports exist is usually known only by the members of the organizations that created these reports.   
These types of comments are what inspired us to try and improve the way we, as an industry, communicate with each other - by creating an independent international magazine.  We hope that it will become the forum of the worldwide community of electric power systems Protection, Automation and Control (or to introduce a new three letter acronym - PAC) professionals. And since we (as specialists in our domain) believe that we always have to have a Primary and Backup solution, preferably with different operating principles, we decided to have PACworld as a quarterly magazine and at the same time a continuously updated web site. Both will be a place for all of us to discuss the issues we are passionate about, share our good and bad experiences, learn about new technology and what is going on in our industry. All of that, I hope, will help us create a global PAC community and define the future of our industry. And we can do all this while still HAVING FUN!

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Relion advanced protection & control.
BeijingSifang June 2016