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Several innovations expected for smart grid development

By Donna Donnowitz
February 28, 2014

SmartGridNews recently covered several innovations expected to revolutionize the smart grid industry and enhance the many advantages offered by these technologies. These developments will help utilities improve their management and distribution of power, service control and much more.

New transformer technology developed by Siemens is focused on green efforts, providing environmentally-friendly support for grid operations that uses vegetable oil for insulation and cooling, rather than non-renewable resources. According to the news source, this will help support sustainability efforts and improve connection between 380 kV extra-high voltage levels and the 110 kV subordinate distribution grid.

Paired with GE's recent efforts to improve its Flexible AC Transmission System, these two developments could reduce global impact of energy systems and provide key technology innovations for new grid deployments. FACTS is focused on improved technical performance and execution capabilities, allowing utilities to enhance the reliability and efficiency of their power systems.

Continued innovation in the smart grid industry is critical for maintaining the versatility and efficiency of these systems and continuing to migrate uses away from legacy, more costly power solutions. Many cities are advancing their deployment of terminal servers and related smart grid hardware in order to support these deployments, and turn to renewable sources of energy. From outage management to peak demand control, these solutions reduce the unnecessary drain of power and ensure that customers gain the benefits of cheaper, more reliable power as well.

From smart meters to the hardware infrastructure that makes the transmission of power and data possible, utilities need to be sure they are investing in solutions that are innovative and scalable. This will keep costs down over time while ensuring the stability of these systems. Considering how critical the nation's power grid is, this importance cannot be overstated.

Of course, with continued innovation within the smart grid industry to be expected, it may not seem worth the initial investment into these solutions in a cost-to-performance balance. For utilities that don't start deploying smart grid solutions like serial to Ethernet converters and smart meters, many consumers will begin to look for alterative power providers, because of the high demand for support.

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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