Austin, TX, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — December 15, 2008 – The Pecan Street Project has been launched in Austin, TX to develop a city-wide smart grid.
Partners in the project, which is being led by Austin Mayor Pro Tem Brewster McCracken, include the City of Austin, Austin Energy, The University of Texas’ Austin Technology Incubator, the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).
Corporate partners include Dell, GE Energy, IBM, Intel, Oracle, Cisco Systems, Microsoft, Freescale Semiconductor and GridPoint.
“Austin has the opportunity to play the same role in the evolution of America’s energy economy that it did with the semiconductor boom in the ’80s,” said McCracken. “The Pecan Street Project will bring together the best talent from Texas and across the country to address the infrastructure, technology and policy challenges that stand between us and a cleaner, reliable, affordable and modernized electricity system.”
Austin is not the only city embarking on a smart grid project. But what makes it different is that because Texas has its own grid, modifications to the power system do not require federal approval. And because the City Council is Austin Energy’s board of directors, Austin is in a unique position to implement technology changes more quickly and offer its electric grid as a real-world proving ground for tomorrow’s clean energy technology.
The project scope includes designing a system that delivers plentiful, reliable and affordable energy to Austin’s growing citizenry; is responsible with Texas’ most precious natural resources, like air and water; can eliminate the need for more power plants; produces a power plant’s worth of energy, generated within the city limits via renewable resources; and that Austin intends to share its experience with cities across America and around the world.
The corporate partners will assist the project team by providing staff resources and strategic guidance within their areas of expertise. Partners will also help the project team identify technologies that can be pilot-tested on the local electrical grid once the initial phase of the project is completed.
In addition to the corporate partnerships announced today, the Pecan Street Project will tap the expertise of SEMATECH, a leading advanced technology consortium, to help structure the clean energy R&D consortium.