About TRUC : Our History

Here is a narrative covering the early days of the TRUC as seen by a pillar of the Transient Data Analysis Community.

History of the Fault & Disturbance Analysis Conferences and TRUC

By Bob Burnett Jan 20, 2005

As requested by Bob Baldwin:
Along with side comments, observations, and recollections.


Since many nights have passed since the start of the following events, I can’t remember every person or event or promise correct spelling of names. I apologize for any I have forgotten. It was due to an old mind, not intentionally done. I also have not mentioned most of the vendor representatives that were involved during these years. That’s a separate story. This is geared more toward the utility side of things.

Prior to the formation of TRUC:

For many years in the late 70’s and early 80’s, Hathaway ( Denver, CO) conducted annual seminars for their users that had papers presented by users as well as internal Hathaway experts. Lou Carter of Hathaway was the King Guru of Oscillographs.

These seminars were mostly covering oscillographs; their uses, and analysis of records.

I was somewhat involved as well as John Boyle and Jack Chadwick, both of TVA.

1983, Sept 26, 27 Atlanta, GA

Sangamo Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Starting in 1983, Sangamo, which was making (started in 1968) the continuous monitoring mag tape fault recorders, started their own “Sangamo Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference”. This was for presentation of general papers on fault analysis. However, any papers geared toward the uses of the mag tape fault recorder systems were looked on with favor. Imagine that!

This conference was held in Atlanta (home office for Sangamo) on Sept 27 and 28.

The Sangamo representative coordinating the conference was Steve R. Jack (ex Hathaway employee; hence his idea).

Papers were presented by: John Boyle, TVA; R.O. Burnett, Jr., Ga Power; Andy Starling, Virginia Power & Electric; R.E. Gifford, Indiana & Michigan Electric Co; C.H. Griffin, Ga Power; Eddie Childs, Dallas Power and Light Co; John R. Linders, Consulting Engineer. Considerable time was spent on analyzing “problem oscillograms” brought by attendees.


1984, Sept 25, 26 Atlanta, GA

Sangamo Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Steve Jack organizer

This was the second of the Sangamo conferences and at this time was the only one being conducted on a national scope.

There were 55 in attendance. Some of the attendees very involved with the fault recorder/analysis business, as I remember, were John Boyle/TVA (presenter); Tak Ning/Southern Calif Edison (presenter); Eddie Childs/Dallas Power & Light (presenter); R.O. Burnett, Jr/Ga Power (presenter); Don McGinnis/Fla Power & Light; Martin Best/Duke Power (presenter); John Cease/Public Service Oklahoma (presenter);

W.C. “Bill” Kotheimer (presenter). Some of the others were M.A. Boney/FPL; Earl Chastant/CLECO; Robert Dempsey/ Potomac Electric Power Co; David Denison/ Tampa Electric; John V. Doughtery/Philadelphia Electric; Herbert Jacobi/ Bonneville Power Admin; Hermann Parrmann/Virginia Electric & Power; Carlton Rinehimer/ Pennsylvania Power; Chuck Riney/ Samgamo; Andy Starling/ Virginia Electric; Garl Zimmerman/ Seminole Electric.

I’m sure many of the above have retired by now and others moved on to other duties. I’m not aware of any one of the above that’s still an active utility employee still working in the fault recorder field. Not only that, but most of the names of the utilities have been changed. TVA, Duke, and Ga Power may be a few with names still intact.

1985, Oct 30, 31 Atlanta, GA

Sangamo Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Dave Koerber organizer

For the third year, Sangamo hosted and sponsored the fault conference. Presenters were Don McInnis/ FP&L; Wayne Barnett/ Texas Utilities Generating Co; Dr Don Russell/ Texas A&M; Jules Esztergalyos/ Bonneville Power Admin; R.O. Burnett, Jr/ Ga Power; John Boyle/ TVA; Larry Smith/AlaPower; Tak Ning/ Southern Calif Edison; John W. Pope/ Ga Power.

As with the previous year, there were 55 attendees. Most were repeats from the previous year but some new people were getting involved. Some new ones at this conference that went on to become active in fault recording were: Steve Conrad/Plains Electric; William “Bill” Reese/ Houston Lightning and Power; Glen Holt/Oklahoma Gas & Electric; Larry Smith/Ala Power.


1986, Oct 30, 31 Denver, CO

Utility Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Sponsored by Rochester (RIS)

This was the first year that Rochester sponsored the conference. Note that it was held in Denver (home of Hathaway). In my opinion, there may have been other motives in choosing the location. In any case, fault recording systems were moving far away from the old light beam oscillographs and even the mag tape systems were soon to be made obsolete by the newer digital systems becoming available. Both Hathaway and RIS were becoming involved with the digital systems.

Papers started reflecting a wider range of topics. Presenters at this conference were: John Boyle; R.O.Burnett, Jr; Dale Douglass; David Lawrence; John Linders; Gordon Mosely; Dennis Norman; Larry Smith; E.A. Taylor; Ron Nutty; and R.Jay Murphy.

The paper review committee consisted of: Wayne Barnett/ Texas Utilities; John Boyle/TVA; R.O. Burnett/ Ga Power; Earl Chastant/ CLECO; Jules Esztergalyos/ BPA; Lyle Klein/BPA; Jay Murphy/Macrodyne; Jim Parker/Gulf Power; Bill Reese/Houston L&P; Larry Smith/Ala Power.

Note: It would appear to the casual observer that all we did was approve our own papers! However, it was somewhat difficult to find people that would present papers on the subjects desired so the “usual suspects” kept going until others came on board.

TRUC was initially discussed at this meeting during a side conference with Rochester. The initial group was hand picked invitees by RIS. RIS suggested a group of “users” to further the advances of the “Transient Recorders” coming on the market. They were primarily interested in advancing their own equipment – no surprise there- most users present were RIS customers. They mainly wanted a group to provide feedback, improvements, suggestions, etc to provide better systems to everyone.

Seems there were about 10 or 12 people present (including RIS reps) at the first meeting when TRUC was first established. I was tapped as the Chairman for the first year. Others I think I remember (that’s not too sure) being there were Bill Royse, Herb Jacobi, Bill Reese, Earl Chastant, Eddie Childs, Tak Ning, David Colson; Lyle Klein. One of the first issues was the perceived “exclusivity” of the group. The BPA folks couldn’t participate if only one vendor had representation. Discussions were to open membership to utilities having other than RIS equipment.

Since memory fades with time I apologize for any errors and/or omissions in the names.


1987, Oct 1, 2 Denver, CO

Utility Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Sponsored by Rochester/Stephen Byers coordinator

The second year with Rochester sponsoring and coordinating the fault conference.

More attendees for this conference than in years past. The word is getting out and more papers and a more diverse selection of papers. The “relay folks” are now starting to take notice and attending and presenting more papers. There were over 135 in attendance.

This was the first time at a public conference where the need for a “common data exchange format” was proposed by Dr Arun Phadke of Va Tech. He had been involved with a Cigre Working Group where this was being discussed. He proposed the utility industry get behind the “COMTRADE” proposal. Shortly afterward a new working group was established in the Power System Relay Committee to work on establishing an IEEE COMTRADE document and standard. Today, the result speaks for itself.

Papers were presented by Dan Hollands/RIS; Dale Douglass/PTI; Herb Jacobi/BPA; Dennis Taylor/Allegheny Power; George Bartok/Northeast Utilities; Bill Fero/Electric Research; Jack Doughtery/Philadelphia; Ron Bown/Atlantic Electric; Doug Kolbenschalg/Ga Power; Dr Arun Phadke/ Va Tech; Harish Meta/ Metah-Tech; Bob Schultz/NYPA; Jostein Gjermstad/Nortroll Co; Bill Hartis/TU Electric; J.Camargo/Interconexion Electra.

Papers were now coming from much wider sources and the audience was more than the “usual suspects”.

The paper review committee consisted of: Carlton Rinehimer; David Colson; Richard Curtner; R.O. “Bob” Burnett; Lyle Klein; Ed Gulachenski; Larry Smith; John Boyle; Bill Reese; Ed Taylor; Tak Ning; Ron Tutty; Jay Murphy; Bill Kennedy; Robert “Bob” Wilson; Gary Michael and Earl Chastant.

During this conference the official TRUC group met again and, I think, elected Bill Royse as the second year Chairman. Other manufacturers of recording equipment were now showing up at the conference and even presenting papers. It was no longer an exclusive RIS conference. Not that it was established that way to start with. The need for TRUC to address more than RIS issues was becoming very apparent.

Some other utility people that showed up for this year and went on to provide contributions were: George Bartok, Andy Bony, John Demco, David Denison, Ron Otto.

There were 121 attendees present.

Members of TRUC in 1987 were:

Bob Burnett/Ga Power; Earl Chastant/CLECO; David Colson/Duke Power; Lyle Klein/BPA; Roger Koester/Illinois Power; Brad Paetz/Alberta Power; Bill Reese/Houston Light&Poweer; Ron Schaefer/San Antonio Public Service; Bob Wilson/BPA.


1988, Oct 4 & 5 Denver, CO

Utility Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Sponsored by Rochester/Stephen Byers coordinator

This conference was also sponsored by RIS with TRUC providing assistance with paper review, session chairs, etc. Presenters included: David Youngblood, Sergio del Pozo, George House, Robert Wilson, Fernando Rojas, Earl Chastant, Larry Smith, Barry Jackson, Morel Oprisan, Robley Melton, Jr, Dennis Keilbarth.

The paper review committee consisted of George Bartok, Bob Burnett, Bob Dempsey, Bob Haas, Bill Hartis, Herb Jacobi, Rodger Koester, Chuck Mozina, Jay Murphy, Dennis Norman, Bill Robey, Bob Schultz, Larry Smith, Andy Starling, Dennis Taylor, Paul Vaillancourt.

The TRUC meetings were geared toward getting feedback from users and presenting findings to various vendors. Vendors were invited to attend the TRUC meeting on an individual basis to discuss issues. Other TRUC duties continued as before. Some concern being raised about RIS being the sole sponsor for the conference. Although other vendors were attending and presenting papers. Discussions were held to consider a different location in the East.

1989, Sept 26 & 27 New Orleans, LA

Utility Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Sponsored by Rochester

After three years in Denver the Conference this year is in New Orleans. Rochester is still the primary sponsor and supporter. Paper presenters were: Larry Glass, Henry Sendaula, Joseph Mooney, Don Koval, David Lawrence, Phillip Barker, Dee Parrish, Jim Jenson, Steve Leistner, Jerry Nordstrom, Sergio del Pozo, Gerald Dietzen, Paul Russell, Yuguang Yang, Page Heller, Ketan Mehta, R.O. Burnett, Jr, Larry Smith, Michael Aucion, Kwang Jeon, Archi Mukherji.

The paper review committee members including TRUC were: George Bartok, Bob Burnett, Bob Dempsey, Herb Jacobi, Kazik Kuras, George Morgan, Jay Murphy, Bruce Pickett, Kent Redding, Carlton Rinehimer, Bill Robey, Ed Schild, Larry Smith (TRUC Chairman), Ed Taylor, Rick Taylor, Chris Walsh, Bob Wilson, and Jim Wilson.

The TRUC meeting was held in conjunction with the conference, Larry Smith /Ala Power, was the TRUC Chairman for this year’s conference. It was also decided to go to chairmanship terms of two years instead of the previous one. It was also decided to go to a rotating schedule like that used in some IEEE committees where the next persons in line of office would move up every two years and a new Secretary elected as the previous Chair rotated out.

Discussions continued on the RIS sponsorship and how to better spread the coordination duties to other than one vendor. It was felt a wider audience could be attracted as well if possibly university sponsorship was obtained.

1990, New Orleans, LA

Utility Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Sponsored by Rochester

This was the meeting where TRUC voted to utilize the services of Texas A&M at College Station TX to sponsor the future conferences. B. Don Russell of Texas A&M was to be the contact and coordinator. Don had been contacted previously to see if he would be receptive to A&M adding this conference to the existing Relay Conference they held each year. TRUC Chairman for this conference was Larry Smith /Ala Power. Bruce Pickett /FPL was elected Chair at this meeting.

The reasons TRUC desired to have university involvement was:

A&M is a top power oriented university.

A&M has fault recorder projects with EPRI and utilities.

Combining the Fault and the Relay conferences should increase participants and attendees.

Better justify attendance.

Provide evening equipment demos by various vendors.

(Note: In all the previous years of the conference, there were no demos and no rooms set aside for any of the vendors to show their wares. Many of the attendees were new to the field and desired an opportunity to see and compare different equipment at one venue.)

RIS did the industry a great service for the years they sponsored and supported the conference. They probably suffered some financial pain to the bottom line after the conferences but gained in goodwill and contacts. They are to be thanked, even today, for their contribution to the establishment and continuation of the Fault Conferences.


1991, April 17-19 College Station, TX

TexasA & M Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

This was the first fault conference sponsored by Texas A&M. It was held in conjunction with their Annual Relay Conference. There were 221 registered for both conferences.

Paper presenters were: Ed Schweitzer/SEL , Steve Basler & David Lawrence/PTI, Tony Ranson/Metha, Larry Mankoff, EPRI, Mike Xavier /EMax, Mike Hines /Southwestern Public Service, Richard Grier /Hathaway, John Demco & J.P. Chrysty & R.G. Farmer /Arizona Public Service, Mike Aucion & B. Don Russell & Carl Benner /Texas A&M, Mark Adamiak /GE, Jerry Jodice /Doble, Larry Smith /Ala Power.

The TRUC officers and members were:

Bruce Pickett /Chair;

Roger Koester & Donna Williams/Co Vice-Chair

Herb Jacobi /Secretary

Members: Blaine Beisiegel; Bob Burnett; Earl Chastant; David Colson; Gerald Robinson; Bruce Cude; John Demcko; Bob Lunsford; Dung Nguyen, George Morgan; Don Wardlow; Dennis Norman; Forrester Betts; Larry Smith; Tom Wakeley.

Vendors attending the TRUC individual vendor sessions were:

Rochester; Hathaway; Utility Systems; Mehta; E-Max; Electronic Instruments; and Macrodyne.

1992, April 15-17 College Station, TX

TexasA & M Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

As was in the previous year, this was held in conjunction with the Relay Conference. There were about 171 in attendance. Other names that would continue were: Mike Brag; Jeff Garber; Wally Echols; Larry Johnson; Jeff Littman; Mark Taylor;

Paper presenters were: Adly Girgis; David Lawrence; Danny Julian; Christopher Fallon; Hirohiko Hayano; R.O. Burnett, Jr; Mike Bragg; K.S. Julien; Doug Kolbenschlag; Page Heller; Surja Sutanto; R. Jay Murphy; Patrick Sterlina; Peter Lemme; Bill Andre; Robyn Smith; Frank Phillips; David Arguelles; Daniel Drogo; B. Don Russell; Jerry Nordstrom; Kevin Carr; John Pease; Jerry Jodice; Bob Ryan; Walter Hinman.

A “Users” meeting was held as part of the TRUC session – no vendors allowed. Individual meetings with vendors to discuss issues. Vendor after hours demos were well attended.


1993, April 14-16 College Station, TX

TexasA & M Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

Donna Williams /Illinois Power was the TRUC chair at this time.

Paper presenters were: Henry Sendaula; M. Kezunovic; Solveig Mahrs; Sherry Goiffon; R.O. Burnett, Jr; Bob Wilson; Damir Novosel; Robert Gough; David Lawrence; M.A. Xavier; Dr Arun Phadke; R. Jay Murphy; Patrick Sterlina; Elwin Johnson; Jeff McElray; Donna Williams; Rich Bart; Joe Mooney; Karl Zimmerman.

The format of the TRUC meetings remained as the previous year.

1994, March 23-25 College Station, TX

TexasA & M Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference

There were 161 attendees.

Paper presenters included: Roger Gillespie; Murlyn Meaux; Mike Adams; M.A. Xavier; Mark Taylor; M. Kezunovic; Larry Smith; Bob Burnett; David Bertagnolli; Richard Spain; Kenneth Fodero; John Demcko; Lenord Cavero; James Garrity; John Ladronka.

TRUC members were:

Herb Jacobi /Chair; John Demcko /Vice-Chair; Bill Royse /Sec; Donna Williams /Editor of TRUC Newsletter. Bruce Bordelon; David Colson; George Bowden; Jiulian Ferrari; Bob Burnett; Sherry Goiffon; Jim Jenson; Brice Pickett; Larry Johnson; Larry Smith; Greg Krajnik; Jon Sykes; Jeff Littman.

The TRUC members voted at this meeting to look at other venues for the conference. It seemed a change of scenery may be in order and move to a different location. It was felt after so many years at Texas A&M there were people that may attend at a different location. Don Russell and people at Texas A&M were excellent hosts and did an outstanding job in conducting the conferences. Subsequent discussions led to the 1995 conference being in Arlington, VA in conjunction with a Va Tech conference.


1995, Nov 7-10, 1995 Arlington, VA

Fault and Disturbance Analysis and Precise Measurements in Power Systems Conference

Sponsored by the Center for Power Engineering, Va. Tech, Dr. Arun Phadke

Dr Jaime De La Ree organizer

This was a joint conference organized by Va Tech and TRUC. The theme of the “Precise Measurements” was mainly due to the rise and interest in the newer Phasor Measurement Units (PMU’s) being investigated and applied to power systems. These systems were being developed by Macrodyne and Hathaway. EPRI projects were also underway using this technology. Under the direction of Dr. Phadke, Va Tech and others were very instrumental in expanding this technology. The combined meeting of the two topics seemed a good match for the time.

Presentations were by: H. Perez; M. Thomaston; A. Baker; M Sendaula; A. Depew; D. Zugris; Dave Bertagnoli; E. Becker; R.T. Dickens; Jim Brandt; J. Hauer; D. Trudnowski; M. Donnelly; J. Patton; Jerry Jodice; Bob Ryan; D. Fedirchuk; M Kezunovic; Jeff Littman; Bob and Larry; Mark Taylor; John Demcko; S. Pillutla; A. Keyhami; L. Allfather.

D.r Dave Sharma, the Administrator for Research and Special Programs with the U.S. Dept of Transportation was the conference dinner speaker.

There were 13 vendors represented with equipment demos. Everyone was in the same ballroom. Good food (free) in the middle of the room and all the exhibitors lined around the walls. For us Southern folk, it sure was cold in Arlington.

The TRUC members were:

John Demcko /Chair; Bill Royse /Vice-chair; David Colson /Sec; George Bowden; Bob Burnett; Sherry Goiffon; Herb Jacobi; J.R. Jensen; Larry Johnson; G.G. Krajnik, Jeff Littman; H. Melson; A. Nazarian; Donna Williams; Bruce Picket; R. Roualt; Larry Smith; Jon Sykes.

Since this was a one time deal, TRUC discussions continued on finding another venue for the conference. Continued desires were to spread the conference around to make it more convenient for some people some of the time. No way to make all happy all the time.

Around this time I contacted Dr. Sakis Meliopoulos of Ga Tech to discuss their interest in hosting and sponsoring the Fault Conference in conjunction with the annual Ga Tech Relay Conference. He was very receptive and wanted this to happen. Membership discussion continued.



Apparently future plans still in discussion – I don’t have anything formal for this year. Maybe my mind has failed me. That was our year of the Summer Olympics in Atlanta and things were hectic to say the least. Somewhere in this time, discussions were underway to expand the TRUC committee membership to include vendor representatives.

1997, April 30

There was a TRUC meeting in Atlanta held during the Ga Tech Relay Conf where representatives from the Ga Tech Continuing Education Dept along with Sakis to discuss formal planning for a joint Ga Tech conference in 1998. We met in Room 359 at the Student Center. During lunch. I’m still hungry.

1998, May 4-5 Atlanta, GA

Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference at Ga Tech

This conference was immediately preceding the Ga Tech Relay Conf which was held on May 6-8. It was sponsored by the Continuing Education Dept (ECE) at Ga Tech and Dr Sakis Meliopoulos was the conference organizer and Dr Roger Webb was the ECE Chairman. There were 120 registered attendees.

Presenters were: Phil Gale; Lou Hannet; Donna Williams; Ben Tremerie; Mike Miller; Angela Rothweiler; Maria Makki; Mark Taylor; Elmo Price; Kevin Stalsberg; John Merron; Sakis Meliopoulos; George Cokkinides; Rowland James; Mladen Kezunovic; I. Rikalo; B. Vesovic; Sherry Goiffon; M. Carpenter; Lynn Schroeder; Rodney; Ballentine; Tim Littler; Mark Taylor; Bob Burnett and Larry Smith.

I believe Larry Johnson was the TRUC Chair at this time but not positive.

There was an award for the Best Paper which went to Sherry Goiffon.

About this time, I could see the light at the end of the tunnel and decided to scale back on TRUC activities and recommended my replacement be Mike Bragg /Ga Power due to his extensive experience and knowledge in the fault recording field. Mike became the Ga Power representative on TRUC somewhere in the 1997-1998 period.

Ga Tech did an admirable job in organizing the Fault Conference. TRUC desired to continue it for the next year as well.


1999, May 3-4 Atlanta, GA

Fault and Disturbance Analysis Conference at Ga Tech

This was also held in conjunction with the Ga Tech Relay Conf and plans were to continue on in the future. There were 112 registered attendees at the Fault Conference.

Presenters were: Geoffrey Garber; Larry Smith; Leland Walker; R. Jay Murphy; John Merron; Bob Ryan; Sazali Karim; Sakis Meliopoulos; Jim Ingleson; Lyndon Harfoot; Mohamed Ibrahim; Mohamed El-Hadidy; Maria Makki; Mike Xavier; Mark Taylor; Larry Johnson.


This brought to a close my enjoyable participation in Fault Conferences.

April 1, 2000 I retired.