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Thread: SmartGrids - What do they have to offer?

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    Post SmartGrids - What do they have to offer?

    While approaching towards the end of this year, I have been reading quite a few articles on SmartGrids. Some of them mention naming Smart Grid as "Smart" as one of the top ten blunders in 2011 while many of them mentions Smart Grids as one of the top technologies in the future. However both of them are different.

    Better visibility and control over the energy consumption is the requirement of both residents (energy consumers) as well as the utility companies (energy producers). In order to make this much more energy efficient and greener 2012, SmartGrid is one attempt of many. I would say this is still a kid and yet much work is to be done to make it SMART.

    Take a look at a paper published around this here:
    http://www.slideshare.net/NaziaG/sma...rgy-management

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    The Smart Grid is really about moving to renewable energy like solar and wind power, they're unreliable so you either need a lot of storage or demand-response (DR) control. The DR aspect - controlling power consumption to match the energy supply is where the intelligence is required.

    Where we now transport oil and gas around the planet, in the future we will transport electricity, the Smart Grid will span the planet and probably be one of the largest engineering projects undertaken by mankind.

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    Quote Originally Posted by simguru View Post
    The Smart Grid is really about moving to renewable energy like solar and wind power, they're unreliable so you either need a lot of storage or demand-response (DR) control. The DR aspect - controlling power consumption to match the energy supply is where the intelligence is required.

    Where we now transport oil and gas around the planet, in the future we will transport electricity, the Smart Grid will span the planet and probably be one of the largest engineering projects undertaken by mankind.
    I disagree to the Smart Grid definition that you have provided.
    The "Smart Grid Dictionary" (Hertzog, 2011) defines Smart Grid as follows:
    A bi-directional electric and communication network that improves the reliability, security, and efficiency of the electric system for small- to largescale generation, transmission, distribution, and storage. It includes software and hardware applications for dynamic, integrated, and interoperable optimization of electric system operations, maintenance, and planning; distributed energy resources interconnection and integration; and feedback and controls at the consumer level.

    As far as I understand from this, it is more about having a definite control over the energy usage and distribution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ngadhia View Post
    I disagree to the Smart Grid definition that you have provided.
    The "Smart Grid Dictionary" (Hertzog, 2011) defines Smart Grid as follows:
    A bi-directional electric and communication network that improves the reliability...

    As far as I understand from this, it is more about having a definite control over the energy usage and distribution.
    That's what's required, my comment is more to do with the motivation. The grid becomes unstable at ~ 25% renewable energy if it can't do DR, and many states/countries have mandates in place.

    "Smart Meters" do not a "Smart Grid" make. To succeed with the Smart Grid we need most domestic appliances to be controllable with respect to power usage, and preferable without user/owner intervention. That's a lot of electronics and software that doesn't exist yet.

    My Smart Grid project is not expecting much of the controllable hardware to be in place for several years.

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    Your solution is very much useful to individuals using renewable energy. For those, who wish to monitor and control their AC and DC appliances, the electronics and software are in the market now. Visit SLS Smart Home: Smart Energy Management Products for your homes

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    Here on Maui, there are a couple of interesting Smart Grid projects coming up. Please see my post on the topic:

    http://nardllc.com/smart-grid-pilot-projects-on-maui/

    DR is one aspect of the solution. I agree in general with simguru on the general technical objectives. I believe the communication technology and device processing capabilities are at a price point where it is feasible. The utility distribution system is ill suited to support dispersed energy sources like PV installation. There is a greater need to control the system at a finer level. Hence the need to monitor what's going on down to the individual household.Cisco is undertaking a major push into the Smart Grid arena and broad support for Zigbee protocols will accelerate the penetration into the market.The industry has done a good job on the technology side of things. They need more work on facilitating customer acceptance.Best Regards,Jim

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    Last edited by jsn_nardllc; 01-15-2012 at 09:23 PM. Reason: Formatting problems...
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsn_nardllc View Post
    ...Cisco is undertaking a major push into the Smart Grid arena and broad support for Zigbee protocols will accelerate the penetration into the market.
    I think they bailed on that - in two years of working on Smart Grid I failed to get any contacts in Cisco (who had anything to do with it), one ex-Cisco person said it was mostly marketing hype. Also, Zigbee is pretty much irrelevant - SG is about stuff wired into the grid, not battery powered things.

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