US energy firms collaborate on smart grid innovation


The collaboration is aimed at developing new solutions for smart grid utilities.

In a press statement, LiveData Utilities said it will integrate its data acquisition software RTI Platform with Space-Time Insight’s distribution intelligence software.

Integration of the two solutions by the US headquartered companies will allow global utilities to better manage distributed energy resources (DERs), grid automation systems as well as generate operational insights for improved customer services.

[quote]Ajay Madwesh, vice president of Utilities IBU and Solutions at Space-Time Insight said: “Utilities need new ways to adapt to DERs that cause large swings in transformer loading and voltage levels and threaten the stability of the network delivery of power.

“The more unreliable service becomes, the more a utility’s customers are motivated to defect to either competitive power suppliers or to generating their own power,” added Madwesh.

Brad Harkavy, LiveData Utilities General Manager also said: “There is a strong interest among smart grid utilities to expand the depth of their intelligence platform.”

The decision to integrate the companies’ solutions follows a successful pilot of the combined technology, demonstrated at the 2016 DistribuTECH conference held in Orlando (US).

Global smart grid adoption

Partnership of the two companies follows announcement by energy market research company, Frost and Sullivan that it predicts that global utilities’ increased smart energy adoption will drive the global demand response market growth.

In a press statement, the research company announced that it released a new study on the global demand response market stating that whilst US utilities are leading in implementation of demand response programmes, Europe and Asia are emerging as hot markets for smart meters and thermostats.

Pritil Gunjan, Frost & Sullivan Senior Industry Analyst said: “The higher investments in innovative technology will aid the smoother roll out of DR programs. Customer interfaces and automated technologies will enable a transparent and secure DR implementation.”

Renewable energy integration

The report predicts the increase in DR adoption will be due to increased calls by governments towards the increased integration of renewable energy sources onto utilities’ grids.

To date, the UK, China, Japan and South Korea are recognising the value of DR as a way to achieve their carbon emission reduction goals, while at the same time assuring clean and reliable power generation during peak times, states the report.

Gunjan added: “Extreme weather variations, declining energy reserves and the introduction of numerous distributed generation technologies have made it vital for utilities to seek newer models supporting energy efficiency and energy management initiatives.”