New trends are emerging in the shaping of smart grid technology. The implementation of smart grids across the country is rather complex. However, the main goal is to make an energy grid intelligent so that consumers are using the grid’s produced electricity in the most efficient manner possible. The new trends are seen in the overall automation of the distribution of electricity, data analysis, demand response, carbon management, home energy management, and the implementation of electric vehicles to the grid.
The automation of the distribution of electricity involves the movement of electricity from substations to consumers. This form of technology will sense, report, and control the distribution of electricity. The automation will include smaller power sources such as renewable energy projects and solar panels being used more effectively within the grid. The new distribution will greatly reduce the costs of powering a given system, and increase reliability. For individual consumers, automation will reduce overall energy consumption and system losses. Which will mean an overall reduction in energy bills.
Data analysis is used as an important way for energy companies to collect, sort out, understand, and track all the information collected by the smart grid. This new data will make it easier for energy companies to provide services for its consumers and track peak demand.
The implementation of the demand response within a smart grid is crucial to energy delivery. The demand response will connect consumers to to their overall energy use through real time pricing. Consumers will have the option of turning on their intelligent appliances when energy rates are at their lowest. This new trend should push companies to create newer energy efficient products as well.
Carbon management and reduction is one of the main goals of the smart grid. The new grids will need technology to measure and monitor carbon emissions through carbon management technology such as smart meters and energy dashboards. Carbon footprints will be greatly reduced in production processes and individual consumption.
Home energy management is usually the part of a smart grid that consumers are most familiar with. Many companies are offering tools or services to track individual energy use. Recent sales figures have shown that consumers are not exactly purchasing energy dashboards in bulk. However, with the rise of smart appliances and electric vehicles, tools for home energy management will play a larger factor in the shaping of local smart grids.
The final trend in the shaping of smart grid technology will be electric vehicles. It is believed by many experts that the electric vehicle will be the final push for the general public to have smart grid technology in mainstream consciousness. As electric vehicles become more popular, energy companies will need to find ways to enable systems to handle increased loads. Having thousands or even millions of vehicles plugged in at once is no small issue. How energy companies adjust to meet this new usage pattern will directly impact the ability of consumers to adopt these new car technologies.
Photo Source: trade.gov