html{display:none} The SEL Difference | Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories

The SEL Difference

Beyond the Blue Box

Lifetime support, supply chain security, training, and education—the benefits that back our products and solutions.

sel-difference-hero

When you buy from SEL, you get our commitment to designing and manufacturing the highest quality products, the value of our ten-year warranty and lifetime support, and our dedication to empowering our customers with the educational tools they need to maximize their investment. It’s more than just a product—it’s SEL.

Service and Support

SEL backs our products and commitments with a ten-year warranty, no-charge diagnostic and repair services, local support, and a variety of test procedures and certifications.

It’s been this way at SEL for nearly 40 years and counting—a major reason why we’re North America’s most trusted provider of protective relays and ranked #1 in price, service, and support by international utilities.

SEL devices are designed for a working life of at least 20 years, and every SEL-manufactured device comes with a ten-year warranty—the best in the electric power industry. If it fails under warranty, repair and replacement are free.

We always do all that we can to repair any returned product, whether it meets our warranty or not.

Should a product failure occur, we encourage our customers to return the product. Our goal is a 72-hour turnaround to get to the root cause of the issue and either repair or replace the unit. When something goes wrong with a product, we want it back—this helps us better understand what our products must endure in the field and informs the ongoing improvements we make to our technologies and designs.

SEL devices are designed for a working life of at least 20 years, and every SEL-manufactured device comes with a ten-year warranty—the best in the electric power industry. If it fails under warranty, repair and replacement are free.

We always do all that we can to repair any returned product, whether it meets our warranty or not.

Should a product failure occur, we encourage our customers to return the product. Our goal is a 72-hour turnaround to get to the root cause of the issue and either repair or replace the unit. When something goes wrong with a product, we want it back—this helps us better understand what our products must endure in the field and informs the ongoing improvements we make to our technologies and designs.

Every device we manufacture comes with free lifetime technical support. We offer free, 24/7 emergency technical support for the life of your SEL products, even if they’re outside of our ten-year warranty.

SEL support teams are stationed in regional offices around the world and staffed with application engineers who are experts in our products and in power system applications. Even if you’re not yet an SEL customer, our application engineers are available to offer industry expertise and support on applications and best practices. 

Contact an SEL engineer in your region.

Many support questions may also be answered by visiting our video portal, where you’ll find how-to and support videos ranging from product set up and configuration to report retrieval and resource management.

For security bulletins and updates, we notify product owners of updates and security patches for the full life of the product. Software and firmware updates are distributed directly to our customers via secure file transfer, and their authenticity and integrity are verifiable through digital signatures and cryptographic hashes.

Read our process for disclosing security vulnerabilities and distributing updates and security patches.

Every device we manufacture comes with free lifetime technical support. We offer free, 24/7 emergency technical support for the life of your SEL products, even if they’re outside of our ten-year warranty.

SEL support teams are stationed in regional offices around the world and staffed with application engineers who are experts in our products and in power system applications. Even if you’re not yet an SEL customer, our application engineers are available to offer industry expertise and support on applications and best practices. 

Contact an SEL engineer in your region.

Many support questions may also be answered by visiting our video portal, where you’ll find how-to and support videos ranging from product set up and configuration to report retrieval and resource management.

For security bulletins and updates, we notify product owners of updates and security patches for the full life of the product. Software and firmware updates are distributed directly to our customers via secure file transfer, and their authenticity and integrity are verifiable through digital signatures and cryptographic hashes.

Read our process for disclosing security vulnerabilities and distributing updates and security patches.

SEL engineers hold more than 900 patents for developing innovative technologies related to solving challenges in the power system industry. Because of these technologies, SEL has gone on to win national and international awards, like first place in the National Renewable Energy Laboratory Microgrid Competition, first place in overall customer experience by the Newton-Evans Research Company, and named the number one microgrid control vendor by Guidehouse Insights.

SEL engineers hold more than 900 patents for developing innovative technologies related to solving challenges in the power system industry. Because of these technologies, SEL has gone on to win national and international awards, like first place in the National Renewable Energy Laboratory Microgrid Competition, first place in overall customer experience by the Newton-Evans Research Company, and named the number one microgrid control vendor by Guidehouse Insights.

With a history of support and partnership involving projects throughout the world, SEL Engineering Services offers turnkey solutions for power system protection, automation communications, and control. Every solution is custom-engineered with an array of field-proven SEL products—all backed by our ten-year warranty and 24/7 emergency technical support.

Our engineering teams provide consulting services and specialized solutions for projects of any scale, ranging from retrofits and upgrades to microgrids and nation-wide power systems. Offering onsite and remote support, SEL Engineering Services is your partner throughout the entire process—from design and testing to commissioning and maintenance.

Featured Services and Solutions

  • Substation automation, protection, and control solutions
  • Power management and microgrid control solutions
  • Cybersecurity services

Additional Offerings

  • NERC CIP compliance
  • Substation engineering services
  • SCADA systems and substation HMIs
  • Distribution Network Automation (DNA)
  • Wide-area monitoring system (WAMS)
  • Arc-flash solutions
  • Remote terminal unit (RTU) replacements
  • Digital fault recording (DFR) systems
  • System modeling and studies
  • Design and drafting services
  • Civil engineering services

With a history of support and partnership involving projects throughout the world, SEL Engineering Services offers turnkey solutions for power system protection, automation communications, and control. Every solution is custom-engineered with an array of field-proven SEL products—all backed by our ten-year warranty and 24/7 emergency technical support.

Our engineering teams provide consulting services and specialized solutions for projects of any scale, ranging from retrofits and upgrades to microgrids and nation-wide power systems. Offering onsite and remote support, SEL Engineering Services is your partner throughout the entire process—from design and testing to commissioning and maintenance.

Featured Services and Solutions

  • Substation automation, protection, and control solutions
  • Power management and microgrid control solutions
  • Cybersecurity services

Additional Offerings

  • NERC CIP compliance
  • Substation engineering services
  • SCADA systems and substation HMIs
  • Distribution Network Automation (DNA)
  • Wide-area monitoring system (WAMS)
  • Arc-flash solutions
  • Remote terminal unit (RTU) replacements
  • Digital fault recording (DFR) systems
  • System modeling and studies
  • Design and drafting services
  • Civil engineering services

Quality in Manufacturing

We design and manufacture all our electronic devices in the U.S.A. This allows for direct collaboration and short feedback loops between our Research and Development and Manufacturing divisions, as well as increased supply chain security.

SEL products are designed and manufactured for the world’s most challenging environments, exceeding all industry standards for temperature, shock, and electric stress. Many of our products are designed to withstand extreme operating temperatures of –40° to +85°C (–40° to +185°F).

An optional conformal coating for circuit boards adds an extra level of protection against contaminants in extreme environments. 

Our products have a mean time between returns for repair (MTBR) of more than 250 years, based on observed field performance. This means that if you have 250 SEL products installed in your systems, you can expect to have less than one unscheduled removal from service per year for any reason, whether it’s a defect or an external factor such as overvoltage, overcurrent, wildlife damage, or environmental exposure.

SEL products are designed and manufactured for the world’s most challenging environments, exceeding all industry standards for temperature, shock, and electric stress. Many of our products are designed to withstand extreme operating temperatures of –40° to +85°C (–40° to +185°F).

An optional conformal coating for circuit boards adds an extra level of protection against contaminants in extreme environments. 

Our products have a mean time between returns for repair (MTBR) of more than 250 years, based on observed field performance. This means that if you have 250 SEL products installed in your systems, you can expect to have less than one unscheduled removal from service per year for any reason, whether it’s a defect or an external factor such as overvoltage, overcurrent, wildlife damage, or environmental exposure.

SEL employs a five-part process to ensure safe and dependable supply chains for our products: building trusted supply networks, ensuring component integrity and availability, verifying software and firmware security, protecting operations and control access, and monitoring for quality and security vulnerabilities. 

Vertical integration also plays a major role in supply chain security at SEL. We manufacture our own critical components in our secure facilities in Washington, Idaho, Illinois, and Indiana to minimize external touchpoints on our devices. We also create our firmware and software internally, whenever possible.

SEL employs a five-part process to ensure safe and dependable supply chains for our products: building trusted supply networks, ensuring component integrity and availability, verifying software and firmware security, protecting operations and control access, and monitoring for quality and security vulnerabilities. 

Vertical integration also plays a major role in supply chain security at SEL. We manufacture our own critical components in our secure facilities in Washington, Idaho, Illinois, and Indiana to minimize external touchpoints on our devices. We also create our firmware and software internally, whenever possible.

SEL complies with the highest quality standards and constantly exceeds those requirements and customer expectations. To ensure superior, reliable functionality, we test our products thoroughly and verify that they will perform for decades under demanding and harsh conditions.

Our quality practices include:

  • Monitoring and controlling processes to exceed the ISO 9001 quality management systems standard.
  • Developing robust, repeatable, and scalable manufacturing processes to address process errors.
  • Ensuring that our test and calibration laboratories use the latest equipment and follow National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) traceable standards for accuracy and maintenance.
  • Partnering with our suppliers for the highest possible quality and value.

Our ISO certifications include:

  • Quality Management System—ISO 9001:2015
  • Environmental Management System—ISO 14001:2015
  • Occupational Health and Safety Management System—ISO 45001:2018

SEL complies with the highest quality standards and constantly exceeds those requirements and customer expectations. To ensure superior, reliable functionality, we test our products thoroughly and verify that they will perform for decades under demanding and harsh conditions.

Our quality practices include:

  • Monitoring and controlling processes to exceed the ISO 9001 quality management systems standard.
  • Developing robust, repeatable, and scalable manufacturing processes to address process errors.
  • Ensuring that our test and calibration laboratories use the latest equipment and follow National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) traceable standards for accuracy and maintenance.
  • Partnering with our suppliers for the highest possible quality and value.

Our ISO certifications include:

  • Quality Management System—ISO 9001:2015
  • Environmental Management System—ISO 14001:2015
  • Occupational Health and Safety Management System—ISO 45001:2018

SEL tests the final implementation of every custom-engineered solution before shipping, reducing overall project costs and engineering time and contributing to easier and faster commissioning.

We invite customers to the SEL Solutions Center at our Pullman, Washington, U.S.A., headquarters to watch as we run their equipment and systems through a series of factory acceptance tests (FATs). Our model power system laboratory houses real-time digital simulator (RTDS) racks used exclusively for hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) testing of a customer’s protection and control systems. This provides factory testing under realistic conditions and allows us to test over 1,000 fault cases in less than 24 hours. This level of testing provides the equivalent of many years of operating history.

Upon customer request, logic settings validation, complete functional testing, and system integration testing are also performed.

Upon system delivery, SEL factory-trained and industry-experienced engineers perform on-site setup and commissioning from installation and wiring to site acceptance testing (SAT).

Learn more about:

sel-difference-FAT

SEL tests the final implementation of every custom-engineered solution before shipping, reducing overall project costs and engineering time and contributing to easier and faster commissioning.

We invite customers to the SEL Solutions Center at our Pullman, Washington, U.S.A., headquarters to watch as we run their equipment and systems through a series of factory acceptance tests (FATs). Our model power system laboratory houses real-time digital simulator (RTDS) racks used exclusively for hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) testing of a customer’s protection and control systems. This provides factory testing under realistic conditions and allows us to test over 1,000 fault cases in less than 24 hours. This level of testing provides the equivalent of many years of operating history.

Upon customer request, logic settings validation, complete functional testing, and system integration testing are also performed.

Upon system delivery, SEL factory-trained and industry-experienced engineers perform on-site setup and commissioning from installation and wiring to site acceptance testing (SAT).

Learn more about:

sel-difference-FAT

Cybersecurity Best Practices

We have a long history of solution and product design for operational technology (OT) environments. This has allowed us to build a deep understanding of the security considerations specific to OT networks, such as assumed trust between devices, deviation from baseline status, and how the concepts of confidentiality, integrity, and availability should relate to each other based on the application.

We build layers of defense and maintain the integrity of each layer’s purpose—in other words, we apply the right technology at the right layer. We believe simpler products are easier to defend and that the safety of the power system and availability of the protection and control devices come first.

SEL solutions incorporate layered cyber defenses to help keep your system secure. 

These defenses incorporate security features that support the specific purpose of each part of the system, such as:

  • OT software-defined networking (SDN).
  • Role-based access controls.
  • Integration with multifactor authentication systems and one-time-password solutions.
  • Encrypted external communications via VPN with IPsec.
  • Hardened engineering access and HMI systems.

SEL solutions incorporate layered cyber defenses to help keep your system secure. 

These defenses incorporate security features that support the specific purpose of each part of the system, such as:

  • OT software-defined networking (SDN).
  • Role-based access controls.
  • Integration with multifactor authentication systems and one-time-password solutions.
  • Encrypted external communications via VPN with IPsec.
  • Hardened engineering access and HMI systems.

Deny-by-default is the strongest approach to designing communications paths in an OT zero-trust network architecture. We achieve this through our OT software-defined networking (SDN) solution, which is part of the Department of Defense Information Network’s Approved Product List. Products in this list are tested, validated, and certified to the cybersecurity and interoperability standards of the Defense Information Systems Network. 

Deny-by-default is the strongest approach to designing communications paths in an OT zero-trust network architecture. We achieve this through our OT software-defined networking (SDN) solution, which is part of the Department of Defense Information Network’s Approved Product List. Products in this list are tested, validated, and certified to the cybersecurity and interoperability standards of the Defense Information Systems Network. 

Cyber services support contracts can include incident response, audits, system hardening, patch/update management, and more, depending on your anticipated needs.

SEL cybersecurity professionals will work with you directly to develop a secure solution that is tailored to your priorities and objectives.

We help with:

  • Services and solutions that ensure compliance with NERC CIP requirements.
  • Assessment services and risk remediation plans based on National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), NERC CIP, and IEC 62443 cybersecurity frameworks.
  • Design and implementation of secure communications networks, access management, and remote access solutions.
  • OT system baselining.
  • Threat management solutions, including logging and monitoring, visualization, reporting and alerting, incident response plans, and data backup and recovery.
  • Cybersecure transition from serial communications to Ethernet—and streamlining the maintenance and compliance requirements that follow.

We practice secure supply chain management and help our customers comply with applicable supply chain and cybersecurity standards (for instance, NERC CIP-013 for certain North American utilities).

Contact SEL Cyber Services

Cyber services support contracts can include incident response, audits, system hardening, patch/update management, and more, depending on your anticipated needs.

SEL cybersecurity professionals will work with you directly to develop a secure solution that is tailored to your priorities and objectives.

We help with:

  • Services and solutions that ensure compliance with NERC CIP requirements.
  • Assessment services and risk remediation plans based on National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), NERC CIP, and IEC 62443 cybersecurity frameworks.
  • Design and implementation of secure communications networks, access management, and remote access solutions.
  • OT system baselining.
  • Threat management solutions, including logging and monitoring, visualization, reporting and alerting, incident response plans, and data backup and recovery.
  • Cybersecure transition from serial communications to Ethernet—and streamlining the maintenance and compliance requirements that follow.

We practice secure supply chain management and help our customers comply with applicable supply chain and cybersecurity standards (for instance, NERC CIP-013 for certain North American utilities).

Contact SEL Cyber Services

Training and Education

A partnership with SEL doesn’t end at commissioning. We’re dedicated to continuous teaching and training opportunities, including education courses through SEL University, advanced documentation like technical papers and application notes, and webinars and conferences.

Earn continuing education units (CEUs) while learning about SEL innovations and technologies through SEL University (SELU). SELU is an International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET)-accredited provider. CEUs awarded through SELU meet the internationally recognized American National Standards Institute (ANSI)/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard.

SELU courses and many of our seminars provide professional development hours (PDHs) for maintaining Professional Engineering (PE) licenses. Courses and seminars can be delivered in various formats, including self-paced online learning, virtual classrooms, live and recorded webinars, and in person.

We can also work with you to develop training that is customized to the specific needs of your workforce.

View current SELU course offerings

SEL University covers topics such as:

  • Introduction to SEL relays
  • Cybersecurity and securing OT networks
  • SEL Real-Time Automation Controller (RTAC) applications and configuring a communications scheme
  • Protecting power systems for engineers

Earn continuing education units (CEUs) while learning about SEL innovations and technologies through SEL University (SELU). SELU is an International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET)-accredited provider. CEUs awarded through SELU meet the internationally recognized American National Standards Institute (ANSI)/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard.

SELU courses and many of our seminars provide professional development hours (PDHs) for maintaining Professional Engineering (PE) licenses. Courses and seminars can be delivered in various formats, including self-paced online learning, virtual classrooms, live and recorded webinars, and in person.

We can also work with you to develop training that is customized to the specific needs of your workforce.

View current SELU course offerings

SEL University covers topics such as:

  • Introduction to SEL relays
  • Cybersecurity and securing OT networks
  • SEL Real-Time Automation Controller (RTAC) applications and configuring a communications scheme
  • Protecting power systems for engineers

SEL experts host various webinars throughout each month, covering topics such as new software releases, product settings, and forthcoming technologies and solutions. These webinars provide participants the opportunity to gain an in-depth understanding of how SEL solutions can be applied to their systems.

View our upcoming and recorded webinars here.

We also participate in conferences and tradeshows and host live and virtual seminars throughout the year.

SEL experts host various webinars throughout each month, covering topics such as new software releases, product settings, and forthcoming technologies and solutions. These webinars provide participants the opportunity to gain an in-depth understanding of how SEL solutions can be applied to their systems.

View our upcoming and recorded webinars here.

We also participate in conferences and tradeshows and host live and virtual seminars throughout the year.