National Grid selects Itron for infrastructure upgrade

US power utility National Grid selected energy management solutions firm Itron as a potential supplier of an advanced metering functionality (AMF) in Massachusetts.

The utility serving 3,4 million electricity and 3,6 gas consumers in New England and New York has proposed the use of Itron’s OpenWay smart grid platform to upgrade its grid network.

In a combined statement, the power company said it believes that Itron’s technology will help in the real time acquisition, processing and management of grid data.

The solutions provider claims that its technology will help National Grid to improve outage management, demand optimisation, distributed resources integration, workforce and asset management.

[quote] The selection of Itron means the firm will design and implement a communications network and cybersecurity infrastructure plan, which the power utility will submit for approval by the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities.

The development follows an order placed by the Department of Public Utilities for the state’s power firms to file their 10-year grid modernisation plans.

The mandate falls under the state’s efforts to ensure grid security in line with its objectives of lowering carbon emissions and increasing its use of smart energy.

National Grid said it selected Itron following a successful trial of the firm’s smart grid technology in Worcester. [Energy efficiency: National Grid’s pilot saves Worcester $1.25m].

National Grid infrastructure upgrades

The news follows a mid-July announcement by the National Grid that it has partnered with ABB to complete the upgrade of its transmission system to ensure the optimal operation of the grid network.

National Grid said it successfully completed its upgrade of a 960-mile (1544.9km), 450KV high voltage direct current transmission system supplying clean energy from Canada to the US state of New England.

The programme to upgrade the transmission lines began in 2013 and has costed $27 million in total.

The plan to upgrade the system falls under the utility’s efforts to replace all of its aging grid assets with new smart grid infrastructure.

The project included the replacement of the transmission system’s HVDC control equipment with new models. The HVDC system protects the entire system from grid malfunctions through detecting and isolating defective lines and other grid assets connected to it. [National Grid and RES launch frequency response service].

Rudy Wynter, COO of National Grid’s FERC regulated business, said: “This Canada-US HVDC system has been an important supplier of carbon-free energy to New England since it began operation 25 years ago.”


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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.