Singapore research agency launches smart grid research center


Lim Chuan Poh,
Chairman, A*STAR
Singapore — (METERING.COM) — July 19, 2010 – The Singapore Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) last week held the groundbreaking ceremony for a new smart grid research facility on Jurong Island aimed at paving the way for cutting edge R&D to develop Singapore as a “living laboratory” for smart grid solutions.

The S$38 million (US$27.5 million) Experimental Power Grid Center (EPGC) is being developed in a strategic partnership with four companies, power systems provider Rolls Royce, wind power developer Vestas, Singapore’s electricity and gas transmission and distribution network operator SP PowerGrid, and the local contract manufacturer CEI Contract Manufacturing.

“Smart grid R&D is critical to transforming Singapore into a smart energy economy and EPGC is an important enabling infrastructure that will bring us a step closer to realizing an intelligent national energy grid,” said Lim Chuan Poh, chairman of A*STAR. “With this infrastructure in place, Singapore will be well-positioned to take R&D in energy solutions to the next level.”

When completed in 2011, the EPGC is expected to be the first experimental smart grid research facility of its kind in southeast Asia. It will be built by a consortium led by Meiden Singapore. Together with the Command and Control Center in Fusionopolis, the EPGC, which will be located in A*STAR’s Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences (ICES), will be a world-class research center to usher in new smart grid technologies for intelligent and decentralized power distribution, interconnection and utilization.
Commenting on the R&D to be conducted at the center, EPGC program director Ashwin Khambadkone added that the Center’s activities will be positioned upstream, towards the research and development of new technologies with a view to future commercialization.

“By leveraging on the wide spectrum of existing research capabilities across A*STAR’s research institutes, from materials engineering and packaging to infocomms, data communications, and high performance computing, the center is able to accommodate a wide range of R&D activities in areas such as intelligent grids, integration of renewable power generation and vehicle to grid systems, and the development of new generation energy management systems.”

The EPGC also will work with partner agencies, including the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), Energy Market Authority (EMA), JTC Corporation (JTC) and National Environment Agency (NEA).

A*STAR is the lead agency for research in Singapore in the physical and biomedical sciences and engineering.