Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Smart grids, renewable resources integrated more easily thanks to technology
As technology improves, big data spreads and businesses invest in advanced computing solutions, utilities and smart grid deployments are benefiting from it. For consumers, this means better power management, less frequent blackouts and lower costs for energy. For utilities, it manes lower prices on their smart grid strategies and an easier time integrating renewable energy sources with their networks.
According to Renew Grid, more companies are partnering together to explore the potential of smart grid innovations and embrace this trend. The development of new standards, as well as communications solutions and other secondary systems that smart grids leverage for data flow and other operations is also improving the industry as a whole, while enhancing the overall framework for smart grid technologies to grow.
Furthermore, innovations in the consumer technology market are also driving smart grid growth. Smarter thermostats, refrigerators that can reduce their power consumption during certain parts of the day and other programmable or automated systems can reduce strain on the network, feeding information back to the utility provider which can then be leveraged for peak demand optimization and other efforts.
"This collaboration will help simplify and propagate demand response-based energy efficiency to millions of off-the-shelf commercial and consumer devices via the latest OpenADR data profile, benefiting energy consumers and utilities alike," Candi Controls CEO Steve Raschke told the news source regarding the firm's partnership with IPKeys toward this end.
In fact, smart grid solutions that drive the integration of wind and solar power with consumer networks was ranked in MIT Technology Review's top breakthrough technologies for 2014. According to the report, investments into this field are booming, and the amount of power the nation uses derived from wind alone has more than doubled since 2009. Furthermore, solar utilization has increased at a jaw-dropping rate, despite still lagging behind wind usage by nearly 10 years.
"We've got a line of sight to where we want to go in the long term with our energy and environment goals," Bryan Hannegan, director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado, told the news source regarding these improvements. "That's not something we've been able to say before."
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