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Federal FERC Order No. 792 Process for Interconnection (8-FD-b)

The Small Generator Interconnection Procedures (SGIP) contains the technical procedures that the Interconnection Customer (IC) and Transmission Provider (TP) must follow once the IC requests interconnection of its Small Generating Facility. The SGIP provides three ways to evaluate the Interconnection Request. They are:
  1. The default Study Process that can be used by any Small Generating Facility no larger than 20 megawatts (MW);
  2. The fast track process for a certified Small Generating Facility that meets the eligibility requirements; and
  3. The 10 kW Inverter Process for a certified inverter-based Small Generating Facility no larger than 10 kW.

All three ways to evaluate the Interconnection Request are designed to ensure that the proposed interconnection will not endanger the safety and reliability of the TP's Transmission System.

See FERC Order No. 792.


FERC Order No. 792 Process for Interconnection Process

8-FD-b.1 - Pre-Application Report

Informal Request

An Interconnection Customer (IC) presenting a proposed project for a specific site can make informal requests to the Transmission Provider (TP) for information concerning the application process and electric systems other than the TP’s Transmission System that may be affected by the proposed interconnection. The TP will designate an employee or office from which the information can be obtained. The name, telephone number, and e-mail address of such contact employee or office will be made available on the TP’s website. Electric system information provided to the IC should include relevant system studies, interconnection studies, and other materials useful to an understanding of an interconnection at a particular point on the TP’s Transmission System, to the extent such provision does not violate confidentiality provisions of prior agreements or critical infrastructure requirements. The TP will comply with reasonable requests for such information.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 1.2.1.

Formal Request

In addition to an informal request, an IC may also submit a formal written request to the TP for a pre-application report on a proposed project at a specific site. The IC must submit a non-refundable fee of $300 along with information required to sufficiently identify the location of the purposed point of interconnection. The IC must include the following information in the request:

  • Project contact information, including name, address, phone number, and email address,
  • Project location (street address with nearby cross streets and town),
  • Meter number, pole number, or other equivalent information identifying proposed Point of Interconnection, if available,
  • Generator Type (e.g., solar, wind, combined heat and power, etc.),
  • Size (alternating current kW),
  • Single or three phase generator configuration,
  • Stand-alone generator (no onsite load, not including station service),
  • Is new service requested? If there is existing service, include the customer account number, site minimum and maximum current or proposed electric loads in kW (if available) and specify if the load is expected to change.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Sections 1.2.2.1 – 1.2.2.8.

Once the TP has received the completed written request and payment of the $300 fee, the TP must provide the pre-application data within twenty (20) business days. The TP must identify the substation/area bus, bank, or circuit likely to serve the IC’s purposed point of interconnection. The pre-application report only needs to include existing data and represent the best available information at the time of reporting; there is no obligation for the TP to conduct a study or other analysis in the event that the data is not readily available.

The TP must include the following information in the pre-application report:

  • Total capacity (in MW) of substation/area bus, bank or circuit based on normal or operating ratings likely to serve the proposed point of interconnection,
  • Existing aggregate generation capacity (in MW) interconnected to a substation/area bus, bank or circuit (i.e., amount of generation online) likely to serve the proposed point of interconnection,
  • Aggregate queued generation capacity (in MW) for a substation/area bus, bank or circuit (i.e., amount of generation in the queue) likely to serve the proposed point of interconnection,
  • Available capacity (in MW) of substation/area bus or bank and circuit likely to serve the proposed point of interconnection (i.e., total capacity less the sum of existing aggregate generation capacity and aggregate queued generation capacity),
  • Substation nominal distribution voltage and/or transmission nominal voltage if applicable,
  • Nominal distribution circuit voltage at the proposed point of interconnection,
  • Approximate circuit distance between the proposed point of interconnection and the substation,
  • Relevant line section(s) actual or estimated peak load and minimum load data, including daytime minimum load and absolute minimum load, when available,
  • Number and rating of protective devices and number and type (standard, bi-directional) of voltage regulating devices between the proposed point of interconnection and the substation/area. Identify whether the substation has a load tap changer.
  • Number of phases available at the proposed point of interconnection. If a single phase, distance from the three-phase circuit.
  • Limiting conductor ratings from the proposed point of interconnection to the distribution substation,
  • Whether the point of interconnection is located on a spot network, grid network, or radial supply, and
  • Based on the proposed point of interconnection, existing or known constraints such as, but not limited to, electrical dependencies at that location, short circuit interrupting capacity issues, power quality or stability issues on the circuit, capacity constraints, or secondary networks.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Sections 1.2.3.1 – 1.2.3.13.

8-FD-b.2 - Interconnection Request, Processing Fee, and Certification

The IC must submit its Interconnection Request to the TP, together with the processing fee or deposit specified in the Interconnection Request. The Interconnection Request will be date- and time-stamped upon receipt. The original date- and time-stamp applied to the Interconnection Request at the time of its original submission will be accepted as the qualifying date- and time-stamp for the purposes of any timetable in these procedures. The form is available at FERC Order No. 792 - Interconnection Request.

The IC will be notified of receipt by the TP within three (3) Business Days of receiving the Interconnection Request.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 1.3.

Certification of Equipment Packages

All generating facilities requesting interconnection from a TP must meet the certification criteria contained in Attachment 3 and Attachment 4 in FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, as well as be approved by the TP that the proposed facility is safe to operate.

Small Generating Facility equipment proposed for use separately or packaged with other equipment in an interconnection system will be considered certified for interconnected operation if:

  1. It has been tested in accordance with industry standards for continuous utility interactive operation in compliance with the appropriate codes and standards referenced below by any Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) recognized by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration to test and certify interconnection equipment pursuant to the relevant codes and standards listed in FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 3.
  2. It has been labeled and is publicly listed by such NRTL at the time of the interconnection application, and
  3. Such NRTL makes readily available for verification all test standards and procedures it utilized in performing such equipment certification, and, with consumer approval, the test data itself.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 4.

8-FD-b.3 to 8-FD-b.4 – Review Interconnection Request

The TP will notify the IC within ten (10) business days of the receipt of the Interconnection Request as to whether the Interconnection Request is complete or incomplete. If the Interconnection Request is incomplete, the TP will provide, along with the notice that the Interconnection Request is incomplete, a written list detailing all information that must be provided to complete the Interconnection Request. The IC will have ten (10) business days after receipt of the notice to submit the listed information or to request an extension of time to provide such information. If the IC does not provide the listed information or a request for an extension of time within the deadline, the Interconnection Request will be deemed withdrawn. An Interconnection Request will be deemed complete upon submission of the listed information to the TP.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 1.3.

8-FD-b.5 - Assign Queue Position

The TP assigns a Queue Position based upon the date- and time-stamp of the Interconnection Request. The Queue Position of each Interconnection Request will be used to determine the cost responsibility for the upgrades necessary to accommodate the interconnection. The TP must maintain a single queue per geographic region. At the TP’s option, Interconnection Requests may be studied serially or in clusters for the purpose of the system impact study.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 1.3.

8-FD-b.6 - Is the Facility Eligible for the Fast Track Process?

A Small Generating Facility that is eligible for the fast track process may avoid the lengthier and more costly study process that ineligible facilities are required to follow. A facility must be fast track eligible and pass the fast track process screens in order to take advantage of the streamlined process.

Fast track eligibility is determined based on the generator type, the size of the generator, voltage of the line, and the location of and the type of line at the point of interconnection. The initial restrictions of fast track eligibility include that:

  • All Small Generating Facilities connecting to lines greater than 69 kilovolts (kV) are ineligible for the fast track process regardless of size;
  • Synchronous and induction machines must be smaller than 2 MW in order to be eligible, regardless of location; and for
  • Certified inverter-based systems, the size limit varies according to the voltage of the line at the proposed point of interconnection. Inverter-based facilities located within 2.5 electrical circuit miles of a substation and on a mainline are eligible for the fast track process under the higher thresholds according to the table listed on FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.1, page nine (9).

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.1.

8-FD-b.7 - Is the Facility a Certified, Inverter-Based Generator no Larger than 10 kW?

If the facility is a certified, inverter-based generator no larger than 10 kW, it may proceed under the 10 kW Inverter Interconnection Process found in FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 5.

If the facility has an inverter larger than 10 kW, has a capacity over 2 MW, or is otherwise not certified, it must proceed under the default Study Process for interconnection. See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C.

8-FD-b.8 - Conduct Technical Screening

Within fifteen (15) business days after the TP notifies the IC it has received a complete Interconnection Request, the TP will perform an initial review using the screens set forth below, notify the TC of the results, and include with the notification copies of the analysis and data underlying the TP's determinations under the screens.

The initial review is evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • The proposed Small Generating Facility’s point of interconnection must be on a portion of the TP’s distribution system that is subject to the tariff.
  • For interconnection of a proposed Small Generating Facility to a radial distribution circuit, the aggregated generation, including the proposed Small Generating Facility, on the circuit shall not exceed 15 % of the line section annual peak load as most recently measured at the substation. A line section is that portion of a TP’s electric system connected to a customer bounded by automatic sectionalizing devices or the end of the distribution line.
  • For interconnection of a proposed Small Generating Facility to the load side of spot network protectors, the proposed Small Generating Facility must utilize an inverter-based equipment package and, together with the aggregated other inverter-based generation, shall not exceed the smaller of 5 % of a spot network's maximum load or 50 kW.
  • The proposed Small Generating Facility, in aggregation with other generation on the distribution circuit, shall not contribute more than 10 % to the distribution circuit's maximum fault current at the point on the high voltage (primary) level nearest the proposed point of change of ownership.
  • The proposed Small Generating Facility, in aggregate with other generation on the distribution circuit, shall not cause any distribution protective devices and equipment (including, but not limited to, substation breakers, fuse cutouts, and line reclosers), or IC equipment on the system to exceed 87.5 % of the short circuit interrupting capability; nor shall the interconnection be proposed for a circuit that already exceeds 87.5 % of the short circuit interrupting capability.
  • The TP will review the type of electrical service provided to the IC, including the line configuration and the transformer connection to limit the potential for creating over-voltages on the TP's electric power system due to a loss of ground during the operating time of any anti-islanding function. For a "three-phase, three wire" primary distribution line, the type of interconnection must be "3-phase or single phase, phase-to-phase" in order to pass the screen. For a "three-phase, four wire" distribution line, the type of interconnection must be "effectively grounded 3 phase or single-phase, line-to-neutral" in order to pass the screen.
  • If the proposed Small Generating Facility is to be interconnected on single-phase shared secondary, the aggregate generation capacity on the shared secondary, including the proposed Small Generating Facility, shall not exceed 20 kW.
  • If the proposed Small Generating Facility is single-phase and is to be interconnected on a center tap neutral of a 240 volt service, its addition shall not create an imbalance between the two sides of the 240 volt service of more than 20 % of the nameplate rating of the service transformer.
  • The Small Generating Facility, in aggregate with other generation interconnected to the transmission side of a substation transformer feeding the circuit where the Small Generating Facility proposes to interconnect shall not exceed 10 MW in an area where there are known, or posted, transient stability limitations to generating units located in the general electrical vicinity (e.g., three or four transmission busses from the point of interconnection).
  • No construction of facilities by the TP on its own system shall be required to accommodate the Small Generating Facility.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.2.1.

8-FD-b.9 - Does the Transmission Provider Approve the Request?

If the proposed interconnection passes the screens, the Interconnection Request will be approved and the TP will provide the IC an executable interconnection agreement within five (5) business days after the determination.

If the proposed interconnection fails the screens, but the TP determines that the Small Generating Facility may nevertheless be interconnected consistent with safety, reliability, and power quality standards, the TP will provide the IC an executable interconnection agreement within five (5) business days after the determination.

If the proposed interconnection fails the screens, and the TP does not or cannot determine from the initial review that the Small Generating Facility may nevertheless be interconnected consistent with safety, reliability, and power quality standards unless the IC is willing to consider minor modifications or further study, the TP will provide the IC with the opportunity to attend a customer options meeting.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Sections 2.2.2 – 2.2.4.

8-FD-b.10 - Interconnection Agreement

Once the TP approves the IC’s Interconnection, the TP will provide the IC with an executable Interconnection Agreement. The Standard Small Generator Interconnection Agreement is found at FERC Order No. 792 - Interconnection Agreement.

8-FD-b.11 – Hold Customer Options Meeting

If the TP determines the Interconnection Request cannot be approved without minor modifications at minimal cost; or a supplemental study or other additional studies or actions; or at significant cost to address safety, reliability, or power quality problems, within the five (5) business day period after the determination, the TP will notify the IC and provide copies of all data and analyses underlying its conclusion.

Within ten (10) business days of the TP’s determination, the TP will offer to convene a customer options meeting to review possible IC facility modifications or the screen analysis and related results to determine what further steps are needed to permit the Small Generating Facility to be connected safely and reliably.

At the customer options meeting the TP must either:

  1. Offer to perform facility modifications or minor modifications to the TP’s electric system (including things like changing meters, fuses, relay settings) and provide a non-binding good faith estimate of the limited cost to make the modifications. If the IC agrees to pay for the proposed modifications, the TP will provide the IC with an executable interconnection agreement within ten (10) business days of the customer options meeting,
  2. Offer to perform a supplemental review (Discussed Below), or
  3. Obtain the IC’s agreement to continue evaluating the Interconnection Request under the Study Process.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.3.

8-FD-b.12 - Conduct Supplemental Review

The TP will offer to perform a supplemental review if the TP concludes that the supplemental review might determine that the Small Generating Facility could continue to qualify for interconnection pursuant to the fast track process.

In order to accept an offer of a supplemental review, the IC must agree in witting and submit a deposit for the estimated cost of the supplemental review within fifteen (15) business days of the offer. If the IC fails to take either action within the timeframe, the Interconnection Request will continue to be evaluated under the Study Process.

Within thirty (30) business days following the receipt of the deposit for a supplemental review, the TP must:

  1. Perform a supplemental review using the screening process listed below;
  2. Notify the IC in writing the results of the review; and
  3. Include copies of the analysis and data underlying the TP’s determinations of the screens.

The TP must evaluate and analyze the proposed generating facility using three screens: a minimum load screen, a voltage and power quality screen, and a safety and reliability screen. The details of the screening processes are available at FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section- 2.4.4.1 - 2.4.4.3, page 13.

Unless the IC provided instructions for how to respond to the failure of any of the supplemental review screens at the time the IC accepted the offer of the review, the TP must notify the IC following any failure of any screen within two (2) business days of making such determination. The notification must obtain the IC’s permission to either:

  1. Continue evaluating the proposed interconnection under the remaining screens;
  2. Terminate the supplemental review and continue evaluating the Small Generating Facility using the Study Process; or
  3. Terminate the supplemental review upon the withdrawal of the Interconnection Request by the IC.

If the purposed interconnection passes all of the supplemental screens the Interconnection Request is approved and the TP will provide the IC with an executable Interconnection Agreement.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.4.4.

8-FD-b.13 - Does the Transmission Provider Approve the Request?

The TP will determine if the Small Generating Facility can be interconnected safely and reliably. If so, the TP must forward an executable interconnection agreement to the IC within five (5) business days.

If not, the Interconnection Request will continue to be evaluated under Study Process, unless the IC withdrawals the request.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 2.4.5.3.

8-FD-b.14 - All-in-One 10 kW Inverter Process Document

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 5 for more information and for application form.

8-FD-b.15 - Conduct Technical Screening

(See above 8-FD-b.8 - Technical Screens).

8-FD-b.16 to 8-FB-b.17 - Review Application Materials

Unless the TP determines and demonstrates that the Small Generating Facility cannot be interconnected safely and reliably, the TP approves the application and returns it to the IC.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 5.


8-FD-b.18 - Certify Construction is Complete

After installation, the IC returns the Certificate of Completion to the TP.


8-FD-b.19 - Inspect Construction

Prior to parallel operation, the TP may inspect the Small Generating Facility for compliance with standards which may include a witness test, and may schedule appropriate metering replacement, if necessary.

The IC has no right to operate in parallel until a witness test has been performed, or previously waived on the Application. The TP is obligated to complete this witness test within ten (10) business days of the receipt of the Certificate of Completion. If the TP does not inspect within ten (10) business days or by mutual agreement of the Parties, the witness test is deemed waived.

The TP notifies the IC in writing that interconnection of the Small Generating Facility is authorized. If the witness test is not satisfactory, the TP has the right to disconnect the Small Generating Facility.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 5.

8-FD-b.20 - Interconnection Authorization

(See above 8-FD-b.10 - Interconnection Agreement)


8-FD-b.21 - Interconnection Request, Processing Fee, and Certification

(See above 8-FD-b.2 – Interconnection Request, Processing Fee, and Certification)

8-FD-b.22 - Assign Queue Position

(See above 8-FD-b.5 - Assign Queue Position).

8-FD-b.23 -Hold Scoping Meeting

A scoping meeting will be held within ten (10) business days after the Interconnection Request is deemed complete, or as otherwise mutually agreed to by the parties. The TP and the IC will bring to the meeting personnel, including system engineers and other resources as may be reasonably required to accomplish the purpose of the meeting.

The purpose of the scoping meeting is to discuss the Interconnection Request and review existing studies relevant to the Interconnection Request. The parties will further discuss whether the TP should perform a feasibility study or proceed directly to a system impact study, or a facilities study, or an interconnection agreement. If the parties agree that a feasibility study should be performed, the TP shall provide the IC, as soon as possible, but not later than five (5) business days after the scoping meeting, a feasibility study agreement (See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 6), including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding good faith estimate of the cost to perform the study.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 3.2.

8-FD-b.24 - Interconnection Study Agreements

Feasibility Study

The feasibility study identifies any potential adverse system impacts that would result from the interconnection of the Small Generating Facility. A deposit of the lesser of 50 percent of the estimated feasibility study costs or earnest money of $1,000 may be required from the IC. The scope of and cost responsibilities for the feasibility study are described in the feasibility study agreement form. FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 6.

If the feasibility study shows no potential for adverse system impacts, the TP must send the IC a facilities study agreement, including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding estimate of the cost to perform the study. If no additional facilities are required, the TP must send the IC an executable interconnection agreement within five (5) business days. If the feasibility study shows the potential for adverse system impacts, the review process shall proceed to the appropriate system impact study(s).

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 3.3.

System Impact Study

A system impact study identifies and details the electric system impacts that would result if the proposed Small Generating Facility were interconnected without project modifications or electric system modifications, focusing on the adverse system impacts identified in the feasibility study, or to study potential impacts, including but not limited to those identified in the scoping meeting. A system impact study evaluates the impact of the proposed interconnection on the reliability of the electric system.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 3.4.

If no transmission system impact study is required, but potential electric power Distribution System adverse system impacts are identified in the scoping meeting or shown in the feasibility study, a distribution system impact study must be performed. The TP will send the Interconnection Customer a distribution system impact study agreement within fifteen (15) Business Days of transmittal of the feasibility study report, including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding good faith estimate of the cost to perform the study, or following the scoping meeting if no feasibility study is to be performed.

In instances where the feasibility study or the distribution system impact study shows potential for transmission system adverse system impacts, within five (5) Business Days following transmittal of the feasibility study report, the TP will send the IC a transmission system impact study agreement, including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding good faith estimate of the cost to perform the study, if such a study is required. The form is available at FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 7.

If a transmission system impact study is not required, but electric power Distribution System adverse system impacts are shown by the feasibility study to be possible and no distribution system impact study has been conducted, the TP will send the IC a distribution system impact study agreement.

If the feasibility study shows no potential for transmission system or Distribution System adverse system impacts, the TP shall send the IC either, a facilities study agreement FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 8, including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding estimate of the cost to perform the study, or an executable interconnection agreement, as applicable.

In order to remain under consideration for interconnection, the IC must return executed system impact study agreements within thirty (30) Business Days. A deposit of the estimated costs for each system impact study may be required from the IC. The scope of and cost responsibilities for a system impact study are described in the attached system impact study agreement.

Where transmission systems and Distribution Systems have separate owners, such as is the case with transmission-dependent utilities ("TDUs") – whether investor-owned or not – the IC may apply to the nearest TP (Transmission Owner, Regional Transmission Operator, or Independent Transmission Provider) providing transmission service to the TDU to request project coordination. Affected Systems must participate in the study and provide all information necessary to prepare the study.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Sections 3.4.1 – 3.4.9.

Facilities Study

Once the required system impact study(s) is completed, a system impact study report must be prepared and transmitted to the IC along with a facilities study agreement within five (5) Business Days, including an outline of the scope of the study and a non-binding estimate of the cost to perform the facilities study. In the case where one or both impact studies are determined to be unnecessary, a notice of the fact will be transmitted to the IC within the same time frame. An example of the facilities study agreement is available at FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 8. The facilities study will specify and estimate the cost of the equipment, engineering, procurement and construction work (including overheads) needed to implement the conclusions of the system impact study(s). A deposit of the good faith estimated costs for the facilities study may be required from the IC.

In order to remain under consideration for interconnection, or, as appropriate, in the TP's interconnection queue, the IC must return the executed facilities study agreement or a request for an extension of time within thirty (30) Business Days.

Design for any required Interconnection Facilities and/or Upgrades will be performed under the facilities study agreement. The TP may contract with consultants to perform activities required under the facilities study agreement. The IC and the TP may agree to allow the IC to separately arrange for the design of some of the Interconnection Facilities. In such cases, facilities design will be reviewed and/or modified prior to acceptance by the TP, under the provisions of the facilities study agreement. If the parties agree to separately arrange for design and construction, and provided security and confidentiality requirements can be met, the TP shall make sufficient information available to the IC in accordance with confidentiality and critical infrastructure requirements to permit the IC to obtain an independent design and cost estimate for any necessary facilities.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Attachment 8.

8-FD-b.25 - Perform Applicable Studies

The TP will perform any of the studies that have been agreed upon and will notify the IC of the results. Each study is done separately and independently. The IC is responsible for the costs of any of the studies performed.

FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 3.1.

8-FD-b.26 - Agree to Fund any Needed Upgrades

Upon completion of the facilities study, and with the agreement of the IC to pay for Interconnection Facilities and any upgrades identified in the facilities study, the TP will provide the IC an executable interconnection agreement within five (5) Business Days.

See FERC Order No. 792 - Appendix C, Section 3.5.7.

8-FD-b.27 - Interconnection Agreement

(See above 8-FD-b.10 - Interconnection Agreement)




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