- Google Taking a Step Into Power Metering
Matthew L. Wald and Miguel Helft.
New York Times, 2009
Google will announce its entry Tuesday into the small but
growing business of "smart grid,"digital technologies
that seek to both keep the electrical system on an even keel
and reduce electrical energy consumption.
- Knowledge is power
The Economist, Vol. 391, No. 8631, 2009, pp. 40.
Clever meters could cut energy consumption—and prices
- A Little Give and Take on Electricity
Matthew L. Wald.
New York Times, 2009
Mr. Kieken is an early volunteer in an experiment in the
“smart grid” — a suite of technologies intended to even out
demand for electricity, cut expenses and make the electric
system more stable.
- Making Electric Grids Smarter
Brian Fisher Johnson.
Earth, Vol. 54, No. 5, 2009, pp. 36-43.
Val and Bud Peterson are passionate about saving electricity-a
seemingly hard thing to pull off given their lifestyle. The
couple lives in a 650-square-meter (7,000-square-foot) two-story
house in the mountains, provided by Bud's job as chancellor
of the University of Colorado at Boulder. They regularly entertain.
But to save energy Val and Bud don't subject their guests
to a low-set thermostat. And they don't freeze themselves
once the party's over. In fact, they're as comfortably warm
as ever-yet, recently, their electric bill decreased. That's
because their house is part of 'SmartGridCity,'the nation's
first fully integrated smart grid system, organized by Xcel
Energy of Minneapolis, Minn. The company is working with green
technology investors to outfit about 45,000 houses in Boulder
with smart grid technology. The Petersons volunteered for
all the bells and whistles of the program. 'I like to tell
people that we have donated our bodies to science,' Val says.
- Regional 'Smart Grid' Demo Project
Draws Idaho Power Players
The Idaho Business Review, 2009
Northwest utilities, power industry groups and university
representatives joined the Bonneville Power Administration
on April 14 in a plan to set up a region-wide "Smart Grid."
- Smart Grids To Get Jolt From IT
K. C. Jones.
Information Week, No. 1224, 23 Mar. 2009, pp. 18.
The federal stimulus bill is giving smart grid initiatives
a jump start, allocating about $11 billion for utilities to
shift their energy supply networks to digital technology,
increasing efficiency and reliability and cutting costs. The
bill includes $4.5 billion the Department of Energy will use
mostly to provide matching grants to utilities for smart grid
development and $6.4 billion that probably will be provided
to utilities as loans.
- Technology's Fingerprints on the Stimulus
Charlie Savage and David D. Kirkpatrick.
New York Times, 2009
While much of the sprawling $800 billion legislation consists
of tax cuts and broad spending increases for existing programs,
like $27 billion on highways and $8.4 billion on public transit,
the biggest outlay on initiatives is essentially a technology
industry wish list: in the Senate version, about $7 billion
for expanding high-speed Internet access, some $20 billion
for building a so-called smart grid power network and $20
billion for digitizing health records.
- Advanced Power Electronic Interfaces
for Distributed Energy Systems, Part 2: Modeling, Development,
and Experimental Evaluation of Advanced Control Functions for
Single-Phase Utility-Connected Inverter
S. Chakraborty, E. Kroposki and W. Kramer.
NRELTP55044313; DE2008944500, 1 Nov 2008, pp. 62.
Integrating renewable energy and distributed generations
into the Smart Grid architecture requires power electronic
(PE) for energy conversion. The key to reaching successful
Smart Grid implementation is to develop interoperable, intelligent,
and advanced PE technology that improves and accelerates the
use of distributed energy resource systems. This report describes
the simulation, design, and testing of a single-phase DC-to-AC
inverter developed to operate in both islanded and utility-connected
mode. It provides results on both the simulations and the
experiments conducted, demonstrating the ability of the inverter
to provide advanced control functions such as power flow and
VAR/voltage regulation. This report also analyzes two different
techniques used for digital signal processor (DSP) code generation.
Initially, the DSP code was written in C programming language
using Texas Instrument's Code Composer Studio. In a later
stage of the research, the Simulink DSP toolbox was used to
self-generate code for the DSP. The successful tests using
Simulink self-generated DSP codes show promise for fast prototyping
of PE controls.
- Albany Hts Cable Project Long Term
In-Grid Operation Status Update
H. Yumura, T. Masuda, M. Watanabe, et al.
Advances in Cryogenic Engineering; Volume 53B, Vol. 53B (985),
No. , 2008, pp. 1051-1058.
High-temperature superconducting (HTS) cable systems are
expected to be a solution for improvement of the power grid
and three demonstration projects in the real grid are under
way in the United States. One of them is the Albany, NY Cable
Project, involving the installation and operation of a 350
meter HTS cable system with a capacity of 34.5kV, 800A, connecting
between two substations in National Grid's electric utility
system. A 320 meter and a 30 meter cable are installed in
underground conduit and connected together in a vault. The
cables were fabricated with 70km of DI-BSCCO wire in a 3 core-in-one
cryostat structure. The cable installation of a 320 meter
and a 30 meter section was completed successfully using the
same pulling method as a conventional underground cable. After
the cable installation, the joint and two terminations were
assembled at the Albany site. After the initial cooling of
the system, the commissioning tests such as the critical current,
heat loss measurement and DC withstand voltage test were conducted
successfully. The in-grid operation began on July 20th, 2006
and operated successfully in unattended condition through
May 1st, 2007. In the 2nd phase of the Albany project, the
30 meter section is to be replaced by a YBCO cable. The YBCO
cable had been developed and a new 30 meter cable was manufactured
by using SuperPower's YBCO coated conductors. This paper describes
the latest status of the Albany cable project.
- Analysis, control, and economic impact
assessment of major blackout events
Koji Yamashita, Sung-Kwan Joo, Juan Li, Pei Zhang,Chen-Ching
European Transactions on Electrical Power, Vol. 18, No. 8,
2008, pp. 854-871.
Recent large-scale blackouts in North America, Europe, and
other countries raised great concerns over the reliability
of our electric energy infrastructure and the economic impacts
of blackouts. These blackouts were caused by a cascading sequence
of events involving line outages, overloading of other lines,
malfunctions of protection systems, power oscillations and
voltage problems, and system separation and collapse. In this
paper, common characteristics of blackouts are identified
by analyzing the cascaded events of the blackouts. It is important
to take appropriate control actions to alleviate overload
and emergency conditions in a power system in order to avoid
catastrophic power outages. This paper discusses available
control procedures and emergency control systems needed to
help prevent catastrophic outages. Economic losses from these
blackouts in the U.S., Europe, and other countries were significant.
An evaluation of the economic costs of blackouts can be used
to estimate the benefits of emergency control systems that
can be installed to prevent blackouts. This paper provides
an overview of the assessment methods and procedures for evaluation
of the economic costs of blackouts. This paper also describes
the generic procedure of an event study to measure the economic
impact of blackouts on the values of the firms in financial
markets. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
- Bottling Electricity: Storage as a
Strategic Tool for Managing Variability and Capacity Concerns
in the Modern Grid
PB2009106438, Dec 2008, pp. 40
The ability to store energy in cell phones, personal digital
assistants such as Blackberrys, and other handheld devices
has become an essential component of business and daily life
for consumers in the United States. The rapid advancement
of communications and information processing technologies
illustrates how small-scale energy storage technologies (e.g.,
batteries in handheld devices) can become a critical platform
for the reliable performance of tools used for everyday life.
The same information and communications technologies will
be the primary drivers in transforming the U.S. electric power
grid into a more reliable, secure, and efficient network capable
of dealing with massive changes over the next two decades.
It is necessary to evaluate what type and amount of energy
storage technology will be needed to facilitate the electric
power delivery system transformation that will support this
growth and to deploy a Smart Grid.
- The Electric Power Grid: Today and
Massoud Amin and John Stringer.
MRS Bulletin, Vol. 33, No. 4, Apr. 2008, pp. 399-407.
In the coming decades, electricity's share of total global
energy is expected to continue to grow, and more intelligent
processes will be introduced into the electric power delivery
(transmission and distribution) networks. It is envisioned
that the electric power grid will move from an electromechanically
controlled system to an electronically controlled network
in the next two decades. A key challenge is how to redesign,
retrofit, and upgrade the existing electromechanically controlled
system into a smart self-healing grid that is driven by a
well-designed market approach. Revolutionary developments
in both information technology and materials science and engineering
promise significant improvements in the security, reliability,
efficiency, and cost effectiveness of electric power delivery
systems. Focus areas in materials and devices include sensors,
smart materials and structures, microfabrication, nanotechnology,
advanced materials, and smart devices.
- Microturbine based distributed generator
in smart grid application
A. K. Saha, S. Chowdhury, S. P. Chowdhury and P. A. Crossley.
IET Seminar Digests, Vol. 2008, No. 12380, January 2008,
- Power system design: basis for efficient
smart grid initiatives
A. Sensing, A. Bose and W. Wittig.
IET Seminar Digests, Vol. 2008, No. 12380, January 2008,
- Power System Smart Control and Verification
S. Bhattacharyya, J. Nutaro, L. E. Miller, T. Kuruganti and
Proceedings of the Tenth IASTED International Conference
on Power and Energy Systems, 2008
Power system control faces new challenges as the demand on
the power grid increases. The demands are met by emergency/standby
generation during short term peak loads or blackouts/failure.
Smarter automated control responds within a reasonably fast
duration to such faulty transients. Automation reduces human
intervention but strongly emphasizes the need for a formal
modeling paradigm which supports verification of the design.
We propose modeling the power system and its control as hybrid
system modules. The hybrid model supports verification of
the design using formal methods like temporal logics to prove
correctness of the design. The verification involves traversing
the states of the system as it evolves to verify the correctness
of the specification. We illustrate our method on a relay-circuit
breaker model and then on automated distributed generation.
- Probabilistic online risk assessment
of non-cascading and cascading transmission outage contingencies
Stephen T. Lee.
European Transactions on Electrical Power, Vol. 18, No. 8,
2008, pp. 835-853.
Power grids have traditionally been designed to withstand
without resulting in cascading events transmission outage
contingencies of the N-1 or N-2 kind. However, in actual operation,
power grids are potentially vulnerable to cascading outages.
Reliable operations therefore require a risk-based approach
to monitoring and managing the probability and impact of potential
cascading outages. This paper defines and quantifies a measure
that relates to the vulnerability of the power grid to cascading
outages. The approach is to simulate and identify potential
cascading modes (PCM) and to compute the probability and impact
of each stage of the cascade and display the risk of each
potential cascade stage on the two-dimensional display of
likelihood and consequences. In this display, the traditional
N-1 or N-2 contingencies will also be plotted for comparison.
This approach enables grid operators to be fully aware of
not only the contingencies for which they are required to
assess and mitigate but also the potential cascading modes.
This places both types of potential adverse events on the
same basis for comparison. When the risk level of a potential
cascading mode approaches or exceeds the risk level of all
the N-1 contingencies (or N-2, if it is the reliability standard),
then the operators will be well advised to take corrective
actions to manage the overall risk of blackouts. Computation
examples of applying this method are illustrated in this paper.
Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
- Smart Power
IndustryWeek, Vol. 257, No. 4, Apr. 2008, pp. 20.
Could the day come when manufacturers adjust their production
schedules according to real-time electricity price rates?
That's the hope of Gridwise Alliance, a consortium of automation
and utility companies exploring technologies that will revolutionize
the nation's electricity grid. While still in the development
stages, the eventual goal is to utilize information technologies
that will result in a 'smart grid'that will provide flexible
and adaptive power for all consumers.
- Smart Power
IndustryWeek, Vol. 257, No. 4, 2008, pp. 20.
A smart grid could allow manufacturers more control over
their power consumption.
- Under surveillance The world power
Vladimir Brandwajn, Magnus Johansson and Marina Ohrn.
ABB Review, pp. 55-58. Dec. 2008, pp. no. 4.
SCADA and EMS are the primary building blocks for a modern
power grid control system B. SCADA consists of measuring devices,
communications and control systems, while EMS comprises various
power system analysis functions. By working hand in hand,
SCADA and EMS can create a highly visible transmission system
for power system operators, allowing them to collect, store
and analyze data from hundreds of thousands of data points
in national or regional networks, to perform network modeling,
simulate power operation, pinpoint faults, pre-empt blackouts
and participate in energy trading markets.
- Basic research needs for superconductivity.
Report of the basic energy sciences workshop on superconductivity,
May 8-11, 2006
J. Sarrao, W. K. Kwok, E. Bozovic, I. Mazin and G. Lellogg.
Star, Vol. 45, No. 13, 9 July 2007, pp. .
As an energy carrier, electricity has no rival with regard
to its environmental cleanliness, flexibility in interfacing
with multiple production sources and end uses, and efficiency
of delivery. In fact, the electric power grid was named the
greatest engineering achievement of the 20th century by the
National Academy of Engineering. This grid, a technological
marvel ingeniously knitted together from local networks growing
out from cities and rural centers, may be the biggest and
most complex artificial system ever built. However, the growing
demand for electricity will soon challenge the grid beyond
its capability, compromising its reliability through voltage
fluctuations that crash digital electronics, brownouts that
disable industrial processes and harm electrical equipment,
and power failures like the North American blackout in 2003
and subsequent blackouts in London, Scandinavia, and Italy
in the same year. The North American blackout affected 50
million people and caused approximately $6 billion in economic
damage over the four days of its duration. Superconductivity
offers powerful new opportunities for restoring the reliability
of the power grid and increasing its capacity and efficiency.
Superconductors are capable of carrying current without loss,
making the parts of the grid they replace dramatically more
efficient. Superconducting wires carry up to five times the
current carried by copper wires that have the same cross section,
thereby providing ample capacity for future expansion while
requiring no increase in the number of overhead access lines
or underground conduits. Their use is especially attractive
in urban areas, where replacing copper with superconductors
in power-saturated underground conduits avoids expensive new
underground construction. Superconducting transformers cut
the volume, weight, and losses of conventional transformers
by a factor of two and do not require the contaminating and
flammable transformer oils that violate urban safety codes.
Unlike traditional grid technology, superconducting fault
current limiters are smart. They increase their resistance
abruptly in response to overcurrents from faults in the system,
thus limiting the overcurrents and protecting the grid from
- Modernising the Power Grid
J. D. Sawyer.
American Ceramic Society Bulletin, Vol. 86, No. 9, 2007,
A smarter approach to how and where electrical energy is
generated and distributed in North America is needed. Various
novel technologies are briefly discussed. They include: a
partnership between American Honda Motor Co. and Climate Energy
LLC to make a micro-combined heat and power (m-CHP) unit powered
by a fuel cell for residential use; a smart grid, where every
electrical outlet not only delivers power but receives and
imparts information about energy use and availability, allowing
a better match of supply and demand; the use of high-capacity
high-temperature superconducting (HTS) cable placed underground
in dense urban environments, advocated by Nexans; the use
of oxy-coal combustion as a retrofit to an American Electric
Power (AEP) plant, which is being assessed by Babcock & Wilcox
Co. (B&W) on a pilot scale, to reduce carbon emissions; and
increased use of nuclear power through new investments in
capacity to mine uranium and facilities to process it.
- Preventing Blackouts
M. AMIN and P. F. SCHEWE.
Scientific American, Vol. 296, No. 5, pp. 60-67, 2007, May.
Since 1990, the frequency of significant electrical power
outages has been steadily increasing, rising even more sharply
after the mid-1990s. On August 14, 2003, the eastern U.S.
experienced the largest blackout in the nation's history,
a massive chain-reaction outage that ultimately left 50 million
people in eight states and two Canadian provinces without
electricity. In the months following this disaster, the U.K.,
Denmark, Sweden, and Italy also experienced major blackouts.
The increase in major outages is attributed to the increasing
disparity between the demand for power and transmission capacity.
While demand for power has expanded dramatically in recent
decades, the U.S. electrical grid has not been upgraded to
keep pace with this demand. Most of the equipment responsible
for controlling the distribution of electricity is more than
30 years old. Compounding this problem is the effect that
deregulation of the power industry in the 1990s has had on
the power infrastructure. Before deregulation, a single power
company typically controlled the generation and distribution
of power for a given region. Today, scores of smaller utilities
exist, thus creating a fragmented system in which most investment
is going to power generation, while little is spent on the
distribution infrastructure. Transmission lines originally
designed to support local power loads may now carry large
loads of power across great distances. Even if new transmission
lines are constructed, increased capacity will do little good
if the distribution control technology is not overhauled.
Most current power plants and transmission lines are controlled
by a system called supervisory control and data acquisition
(SCADA), which consists of a network of sensors and controllers.
SCADA systems are several decades old and are generally not
fast enough to meet current distribution challenges. To prevent
blackouts, a self-healing smart grid must be developed that
can monitor the system and respond to problems in real-time;
anticipate potential problems and institute appropriate responses;
and isolate failures in the network so that the domino effect
that occurred in the 2003 blackout cannot happen. The greatest
obstacle to developing and implementing a self-healing smart
grid is cost. The testing and installation of such a system
for the entire U.S. would cost about 3 billion a year for
10 years. In addition, operators must be trained for the new
system. Although the cost is high, the current annual cost
of power outages in the U.S alone is 0-120 billion. On any
given day, an estimated half-million Americans are without
electricity for at least 2 hours. Meanwhile, the threat of
super blackouts remains unacceptably high.
- The Safety of Electricity Networks
Today and in the Future
Zbigniew A. Styczynski, Antje Orths and Rainer Krebs.
Magdeburger Wissenschaftsjournal, 48. 2007, pp. 24-31.
Today, electric energy systems are in the scope of public
debate. A disturbance in this critical infrastructure can
lead to enormous damage within a society. New renewable energy
resources, as e.g. wind generators, supply an increasing share
of electrical energy at grid nodes, which originally have
not been designed for this purpose. The Otto-vonGuericke University
Magdeburg executed a lot of scientific work together with
its partners as e.g. Vattenfall Europe Transmission, Siemens
AG or Energinet.dk (Denmark), searching for new, problem oriented
and intelligent methods which allows optimal planning and
operation of the future's power system (Smart Grid).
- Riding the sine wave
EDN, Vol. , No. 23, 10 Nov. 2005, pp. 39-40, 42, 44, 46,
Proponents of BPL (broadband-over-power-line) technology
insist that the best wires for last mile were strung and connected
long ago. But BPL still faces technical hurdles, a potentially
nasty standards fight, and angry amateur-radio operators.
To many of us that lived the DSL-versus-cable battles, the
broadband fight is history. But as alternative schemes such
as WiMax are demonstrating, a place still exists for new last-mile
broadband technologies. BPL advocates insist that the power
grid is the best option yet. The technology offers the potential
advan tage of a ubiquitous "broadband outlet" on every wall
of a house or a business. Moreover, a smart grid could enable
applications such as automatic meter reading, load balancing,
and even remote con trol of power-hungry appliances such as
air conditioners - in turn subsidizing the Internet service.
Proponents even claim that BPL systems can deliver video and
voice over IP in addition to Internet services. Relatively
small deployments of BPL are under way worldwide. But let's
fully examine the real challenges that BPL still must face
to go mainstream. Depending on whom you listen to, BPL is
either apanacea or a plague. Back in earl tuber, ComTek (Communicaechnologies)
held a press conference in conjunction with the city of Manassas,
VA, to announce a citywide BPL network. The hype was thick.
ComTek Founder and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Fergus opened
saying, "It's certainly a pleasure being here today to welcome
you all to this great event, this historic event in the history
of this nation .. to announce an achievement of a major national
technology milestone - the first citywide commercial deployment
of BPL. It is no exaggeration to say that Manassas now has
the distinction of being plugged into the Internet in a way
that is truly unlike any other city in America."
- Agents negotiating for load balancing
of electricity use
F. Brazier, F. Cornelissen, R. Gustavsson, et al.
The 1998 18th International Conference on Distributed Computing
Systems; Amsterdam, Neth; Neth; 26-29 May 1998; The 1998 18th
International Conference on Distributed Computing Systems
Emerging technologies allowing two-way communication between
utility companies and their customers, as well as with smart
equipment, are changing the rules of the energy market. Deregulation
makes it even more demanding for utility companies to create
new business processes for mutual benefit. Dynamic load management
of the power grid is essential to make better and more cost-effective
use of electricity production capabilities, and to increase
customer satisfaction. The compositional development method
DESIRE has been used to analyze, design, implement and verify
a multi-agent system capable of negotiation for load management.
- Biden, Commerce Secretary announce
next step in stimulus
Smart Grid Today
- Building the Smart Grid
Energy: By promoting the adoption of renewable-energy technology,
a smart grid would be good for the environment—and for innovation
- Greenbox Delivers Energy Usage Understanding
to Utility Customers
Erich W. Gunther.
2009, Nov 1
Greenbox Technology Inc. is demonstrating an integrated Internet
service that lets residential customer view, interpret, and
act on their everyday utility consumption — including non-electric
utility services, distributed generation, and remote appliance
control from a Web browser. Have they succeeded at creating
a truly useful energy portal?
- IBM: Welcome to Smart Grid Island
2009, Oct 31
The island nation of Malta will soon be able to call itself
the first smart grid island (reality TV show anyone?) IBM
is planning to build the first national smart grid network
on Malta complete with 250,000 smart meters that will enable
the national utilities and their customers to better manage
energy and water use. The deal is for 70 million euro ($90
million) and the network is supposed to be completed by 2012.
- It's Your Smart Grid
2009, No. Oct 31
This website answers frequently asked questions about the
- Leader or Follower? The Four Essentials
of a Safe-and-Sane Smart Grid Plan
SmartGridNews.com, 2009, Nov 1
Technology and market forces are converging to fundamentally
change the way the grid operates, with consequences we will
feel for generations. We must make decisions as significant
as those wrestled over by Edison and Westinghouse as they
debated DC versus AC power distribution. To make those decisions
and to quickly capture the benefits of the Smart Grid, utilities
need to get organized and act with urgency. They must understand
the challenges; and then they can apply four approaches that
will help them get past the roadblocks.
- More Power To The GRID
2009, Oct 31
Working with industry, ORNL is testing advanced conductors
and developing superconducting cables to improve the efficiency
of the U.S. electric grid.
- A Renewable Grid is a Secure Grid
The good news is that we can make decisions now to build
a renewable grid that is inherently secure and highly resistant
not only to cyberattack but to conventional sabotage.
- Strategic Vision for Advanced Distribution
2009, Oct 31
This article is excerpted from EPRI's "Assessment of the
Case for IEC 61850 in Advanced Distribution Automation" The
utility industry is rapidly moving to modernize their distribution
systems, including wider use of advanced distribution automation