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Making the future smarter

By Max Burkhalter
December 11, 2013

The smart grid industry continues to expand and evolve at an impressive rate, but having some additional insight into where it's heading can help utility firms, governments and others interested in deploying these technologies and their supporting hardware - such as terminal servers - more effectively.

According to Smart Grid News, several markets within the smart grid industry are expected to grow quickly over the next few years. Cybersecurity considerations are predicted to have a CAGR of 29.43 percent from 2012-2016, while smart grid investments in the water utility industry is anticipated to triple from $1.1 billion in 2013 by 2022.

Research and Markets recently forecast that the overall smart grid market is expected to surpass $400 billion in value by 2020, with alternative power sources, such as wind, driving this growth with their own increases. The small-wind power market is predicted to see massive growth from 2012 to 2020 from $690 million to over $3 billion.

All of these investments and explosive growths lend themselves toward one specific trend however, increased adoption of smart grid technologies by cities and utility providers across the globe. According to FierceSmartGrid, more cities are exploring smart grid options every day, and supporting these efforts with increased deployment of high-quality information and communication technologies.

With ICT investments on the rise, cities are able to support the data traffic that smart grids require to keep costs low and pass those savings on to consumers. The efficiency of these systems rely on swift, uninterrupted flow of data as well, which is why cities and providers have to invest in high-quality serial to Ethernet converters as well. By getting smart grid technologies interconnected and able to communicate on a broad scale, these systems become more effective at reducing power consumption and distributing it in the most efficient manner.

Advanced ICT investments, exploration of smart grid opportunities and increased interest in the related markets is a global trend that will continue to skyrocket as the search for more sustainable, cleaner energy continues. By embracing these trends now and being prepared, organizations can optimize power flow and ensure they are meeting the needs and expectations of a greener, more informed community.

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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