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Innovations delivering major growth across smart grid-related sectors

By Max Burkhalter
May 15, 2014

The energy industry, specifically the sectors attached to smart grid deployments, is expected to see major growth over the next few years, driven by innovations with smart grid technologies and other energy efficiency trends. As more utilities, cities and nations invest in smart grids and the serial to Ethernet converters and similar hardware needed to support these deployments, the opportunities for growth presented by them will skyrocket.

Electric vehicle purchases continue to rise
Navigant Research's recent study on electric vehicles has found that the market is going to continue its meteoric growth rate, reaching just under 100,000 units sold in 2013 in North America alone, with global sales of light duty EVs expected to exceed 514,000 by 2023. This rapid adoption rate is being driven by incentivized EV ownership and driving, as well as continued innovations within this market. With a predicted CAGR of 24.6 percent, the EV market is expected to significantly outperform traditional light duty vehicles, with only a 2.6 percent CAGR.

This trend will have a major impact on smart grid distribution investments, based on how and where EVs are purchased, the firm noted.

Distribution automation growing
Continued investments into distribution automation systems are also expected to have a heavy impact on smart grid deployments, with an anticipated 8.67 percent CAGR in global distribution automation markets from 2013 to 2018. This growth is specifically being driven by power loss assessment needs, TechNavio noted in its recent "Global Distribution Automation Market 2014-2018" report. This trend will directly influence smart investments as firms seek to optimize their grid infrastructure with advanced terminal servers and the connectivity hardware necessary to support automation.

Smarter cities means smarter energy
On a global scale, smart city investments are also expected to rise, with a CAGR of 14.1 percent from 2014 to 2019 in global smart city markets. According to MarketsandMarkets' "Smart Cities Market - Worldwide Market Forecasts and Analysis (2014 - 2019)," this trend will drive smart grid and related investments to exceed $1,266.58 billion - an impressive deployment change over the $654.57 billion expected to be invested in smarter city infrastructure this year.

Perle offers a range of cost effective serial-to-Ethernet converters to help meet NERC-CIP compliance for the protection of critical cyberassets in substations. The IOLAN SDS HV/LDC Terminal Server is designed to meet harsh environments associated with Power Substations with attributes such as support for substation AC and DC voltage ranges, extended operating temperatures and meeting emission, immunity and safety approvals associated with substation IT equipment.


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