Shanghai is braced for the looming peak season of electricity usage — and robots and drones will play their part.
To ensure sufficient and smooth power supply during the summer, the city's power supplier — the State Grid Shanghai Electric Power Company — has launched a series of measures.
These include upgrading old substations in downtown and reconstructing power supply infrastructures of old residential buildings.
The city's maximum electricity load is expected to range from 31,500 to 32,500 megawatts over the peak period, up by 0.4 to 3.57 percent over last year, the supplier said. It measures the peak period as running from June 15 to September 23.
Shanghai's local power stations capacity is to reach about 20,000 megawatts of electricity, and about 15,380 megawatts from neighboring provinces are expected to support the city.
According to the meteorological bureau, this year's summer is expected to have more hot days than usual, as well as stronger winds and more rain. It said the city is expected to have 22 to 28 days when the temperature will be above 35 degrees Celsius this summer.
"Sweltering weather brings challenges to power supply," said Liu Yunlong, deputy manager of State Grid. "For days over 35 degrees, every 1 degree rise needs a 500 megawatt increase in electricity generation capacity."
The company has upgraded 220 old substations in seven downtown districts and expanded capacity of power transmission of the electricity grid to prepare for the peak season.
A three-year government project aimed at reconstructing power supply infrastructures covering more than 3 million households living in old residential buildings is expected to be completed before October.
To deal with power outages, the company has 173 repair stations with more than 1,600 staff on standby daily. Residents can report any problems by phoning the hotline 95598.
State Grid has also employed new technologies — including robots and drones — to provide smarter maintenance support. The maintenance robots have been placed in 45 city substations.