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The energy supply chain is also in turn dependent on a bunch of microcontrollers (and also macrocontrollers, if there's such a word), all the way from power plants to distribution networks. So if we want to keep those running, we'll need to make sure we have the ability to repair/replace that hardware, too.



> (and also macrocontrollers, if there's such a word),

Not really, but the idea is sound. There's a hierarchy of control in electricity generation.

* At the bottom level you have microcontroller driven control loops sitting within the plants themselves. These operate on a sub-second timescale and do things like balance air/fuel/etc. flow through the plant to keep it safely running and stable.

* The lowest level loops take their setpoints and controls from a higher level set of controls that work at the level of the generating unit. Those work along the lines of 'generator 1 produce 200MW and ramp to 300MW over the next 3 hours.'

* Above that are control loops run by the grid operator that dispatch plants to match the amount of generation. (And do so in a safe and economic way).

* Above that are (can be) a series of nested power markets ranging in duration from real time, daily, monthly, etc.

* Above that are (can be) long term capacity markets that help ensure there's enough capacity within a grid to serve future load needs.

(So there are a lot of things that might qualify as 'macrocontrollers'. :-) )




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