Science and TechEnergy


What Makes The U.S. Power Grid So Vulnerable To Blackouts?

The U.S. power grid is extensive — and precarious.
Posted at 5:32 PM, Jul 13, 2022

Some have called it the biggest machine ever built .

At the dawn of the electric age in 1885, individual power plants like the Pearl Street Station in New York City served individual customers.  

By the 1930s, engineers connected homes and businesses to multiple power plants, to make the system more reliable 

Today’s grid includes more than 5,800 major power generators, usually big ones; more than 1600,000 miles of high voltage power lines that carry power long distances and 450,000 miles of electrical wires that then distribute the power to 145 million customers in homes and businesses. 

While our grid is impressive, it’s fraying at the edges.