Smart grid projects continue to grow

Smart grids offer advantages in every area utilities might need them.

By Donna Donnowitz
March 21, 2014

Regardless of economic climates, government changes and the weather, smart grid deployments are soldiering on across the United States. New projects and developments continue to pop up, and utilities are demonstrating increased resiliency and stability as they invest in terminal servers, smart meters and the other hardware necessary to bring a smart grid to life.

Colder power
According to Smart Grid News, Ice Energy in California has partnered with Moreno Valley Electric Utility to pilot an energy storage solution for their customers. The success of the initiative allows Ice Energy to provide its thermal storage units as an alternative to more costly infrastructure solutions. When paired with serial to Ethernet converters and other smart grid efforts, these tools will provide cheaper, more reliable power and support green, renewable solutions across the state.

Cheaper power
Utility Partners of America has also started working on a smart grid program that would reduce the cost of utilities by installing smart meters with automation controls for delivery, peak demand and other management issues that affect consumer utility costs. By accessing more data about user habits, UPA will be able to automate shutoffs and demand cycles in order to offer customers lower prices for their power, water and gas. This, in turn, will help support future utility efforts, such as investments into renewable energy sources.

Cleaner power
Smart grid efforts of all types help utilities optimize the flow of power to the consumer, reducing waste, improving control over distribution and helping them operate greener. Furthermore, these initiatives allow providers to harness renewable energy sources more effectively, such as wind and solar, and redistribute them across their networks in order to reduce the use of non-renewable resources overall. This, in turn, will enhance environmentally-friendly efforts across the globe.

By turning to smart grids for more than improve operational flow, utilities can spread the benefits around wider and start leveraging them for significant returns in other areas that will have broad advantages for consumers and businesses alike.

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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