Microgrids are popping up across the country, driven by energy cost savings, sustainability, reliability and resilience
From a municipal airport in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to a school district in Salinas, California, microgrid projects are popping up across the country, fueled by the desire for energy cost savings, sustainability, reliability and resilience.
Grid modernization is gearing up, with several states leading the charge
Grid modernization is getting into gear across the country as electric utilities continue to work to automate distribution and smarten the grid. Buoyed by validating data, states such as California, New York, Illinois and Massachusetts are leading the way, providing blueprints for other regions to follow.
Electric utilities are realizing that distribution modernization programs, also referred to as grid modernization, can no longer be put off. Overhauling the electric distribution system will require upgrades to OT, as well as to the networks that allow IT and OT components to communicate to improve reliability. The benefits are clear: Grid operators need advanced sensors, communications and automation so they can see what’s happening in real time, which will lessen disruption while enhancing efficiency, reliability, security and safety.
Government and utility leaders understand the importance of maintaining security across IT, OT networks
Intent on safeguarding the nation’s largest electric grids from potential mayhem, federal regulators have stepped up their oversight of the security of power utilities in an attempt to protect it from threats and incidents such as widespread, long-duration blackouts caused by digital saboteurs. Cyber threats linger, however, with operational technology (OT), including water systems that are far less centralized and, thus, more vulnerable.
System reliability & efficiency needs are driving utilities to rely on connected technology
Growing commitment to distributed energy resources (DER) is forcing continued modernization of the grid — and the effort shows no signs of letting up. Whether by regulatory mandate or stakeholder pressure, system upgrades are being made worldwide to support the increase in renewable energy, while making infrastructure smarter and more resilient. Historically, attention to the grid’s distribution system focused on poles and wire maintenance and upkeep, but growing connectivity between assets is requiring a more holistic approach.
New Strategic Directions Report reflects rising role of Big Data across infrastructure systems
OVERLAND PARK, Kan., January 16, 2018 /3BL Media/ - Big Data’s potential to improve community quality of life while making critical human infrastructure more efficient and sustainable is overcoming lingering fears about the costs of smart city solutions.
Financing upgrades to the nation's electrical infrastructure is a looming challenge
While the White House’s plans for a $1 trillion federal infrastructure program continue to coalesce, one recent estimate puts the depreciated value of the American electric infrastructure—including power plants, transmission lines, distribution lines, substations and transformers—at around $1.5 trillion to $2 trillion, with a replacement value of $4.8 trillion.
For years, utilities have struggled to define the more responsive operational systems and customer-centric performance models that would trumpet the arrival of Utility 2.0. Lacking a singular event marking the shift, it seems more likely a steady, incremental advance through technology deployments, analytics and a focus on customer engagement represents the path towards a continually evolving future state. As we have seen with the progress to date, further advances will require continuing coordination within utilities, their regulators and customers to ensure a sustainable path forward.
Boston, MA, October 21, 2014 /3BL Media/ — Energy Points, the source energy intelligence company, has achieved an unmatched level of granularity in automated electricity supply chain analysis, which will help companies reach emissions targets more quickly and get better overall results for their budgets. Those that are planning solar and other distributed energy projects in order to replace the grid’s emission-intensive energy sources have the most to gain.