Smart grid forecasts are making headlines this week with US market research company Navigant Research projecting revenue from the global protective relay market to grow from US$5.5 billion in 2015 to US$9.7 billion in 2024.
Meanwhile, Technavio predicts that the global smart grid data analytics market will grow at a CAGR of 20.6% from 2014 to 2019.
Navigant's research report analyses the global market for digital protective relays, devices designed to trip a circuit breaker when a fault is detected, which are changing the management of transmission and distribution grids.
The report finds that widely deployed supervisory control and data acquisition systems collect grid status data at 4 to 5 second intervals, which the study says are too infrequent to reveal the many disturbances that cause protective relays to trip.
Traditionally, disturbances affecting transmission and distribution grids went undetected by T&D system operators, which have been not been able to respond or complete an analysis after outages occur.
Today, protective relays are more advanced, and are equipped with intelligent modules helping T&D operators to manage grids more effectively and monitor grid conditions in real-time, Navigant said.
Advanced protective relays enable advanced sub-second monitoring, data collection, communications and possess phasor measurement unit capabilities.
With advancements in relay technology, the company expects "replacement cycles to provide a growing revenue stream or vendors over the next decade."
Smart grid data analytics
Meanwhile, global technology research company Technavio has estimated the global smart grid data analytics market to grow at CAGR of 20%, from 2014-2019.
Data analytics has become a key consideration for utilities developing smart grid infrastructure and undertaking smart meter deployments.
In a recent report by C3 Energy, the smart grid analytics SaaS solutions provider stated that "data is becoming a valuable asset for utilities, and with that comes a focus on analytics in order to reveal and act on insights from the increasing volumes of data."
The California-based company, revealed that European utilities spent about €190 million (€0.66 per meter) on smart grid data analytics in 2012 versus about €230 million (€1.31per meter) in North America, or about half as much per meter.
C3 goes onto say,"Smart grid data analytics investment in Europe has generally lagged behind North America, but that will change as European utilities are faced with multiple technology drivers, dynamic business models, and the growing necessity to realize measurable returns from smart grid investments."